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Old 01-27-2012, 07:23 PM    (permalink
bearsfan_51
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to make it into one of the most respected state universities in the country
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Old 01-27-2012, 08:26 PM    (permalink
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Lol and agree.
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Old 01-27-2012, 08:45 PM    (permalink
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wait what?
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Old 01-28-2012, 04:18 AM    (permalink
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All I have to say
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Old 01-28-2012, 11:49 AM    (permalink
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Yes, because when people are ranking state universities, they base it off of one op-ed by a completely obscure person in the Wall Street Journal.

A lot of the time, I'm willing to concede that what I hold are debatable opinions. In this case, not only do I work in academia, but there are countless quantified measures of ranking universities. The best, and most highly regarded, is the ARWU by Shanghai Jiao Tong University (China..go figure). The ARWU is heavily biased towards the sciences (China...go figure), so as someone in the liberal arts, I wish there was something more balanced that is held in the same esteem, but there isn't. Anyway, here are the top 20 public universities in the United States for 2011:

1) University of California, Berkeley
2) UCLA
3) University of Washington
4) University of Wisconsin, Madison
5) University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
6) University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
7) University of Minnesota (how the hell we slipped below Illinois.....)
8) University of Colorado, Boulder
9) University of California, Santa Barbara
10) University of Texas, Austin
11) University of Maryland, College Park
12) University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
13) Pennsylvania State University- University Park
14) University of California, Davis
15) University of California, Irvine
16) University of Pittsburgh
17) Rutgers University
18) Purdue University
19) Ohio State University
20) University of Florida

I'm actually surprised that it's as high as 13. Usually, Penn State is at the bottom of the Big Ten with Michigan State and Iowa (Nebraska doesn't count). Penn State must have a particularly high engineering or natural sciences department, because I know as someone in the field that their humanities are not particularly high up there.

In any event, if by "one of the most respected" he meant 13th, then ok, I'll give him that.

Also for those scoring at home, here's the conference breakdown:

Pac-12: 4
Big Ten: 7
Big 12: 1
ACC: 3 (if you count Pittsburgh)
Big East: 1
SEC: 1 (barely)
Big West: 3
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Old 01-28-2012, 01:33 PM    (permalink
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Might suck to be a Big Ten football fan right now, but it's certainly nice to be a student.
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Old 01-28-2012, 03:10 PM    (permalink
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I'm actually surprised that it's as high as 13. Usually, Penn State is at the bottom of the Big Ten with Michigan State and Iowa (Nebraska doesn't count). Penn State must have a particularly high engineering or natural sciences department, because I know as someone in the field that their humanities are not particularly high up there.

In any event, if by "one of the most respected" he meant 13th, then ok, I'll give him that.
Penn State is really good for engineering/technology and social sciences. Also pretty good for life and natural sciences but yea, we're middle of the road for humanities and liberal arts and stuff like that.

Given the amount of public universities in the United States, I feel like you are really nitpicking because they aren't too highly rated in your field...I don't really understand how you can make an argument that any of those 20 schools on your list aren't one of the most respected universities in the country.
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Old 01-28-2012, 03:48 PM    (permalink
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Penn State is really good for engineering/technology and social sciences. Also pretty good for life and natural sciences but yea, we're middle of the road for humanities and liberal arts and stuff like that.

Given the amount of public universities in the United States, I feel like you are really nitpicking because they aren't too highly rated in your field...I don't really understand how you can make an argument that any of those 20 schools on your list aren't one of the most respected universities in the country.
"One of" is a vague term, but it usually doesn't mean top 20. I know a lot of people, but if I said someone was "one of my favorite people" I wouldn't imagine that I could think of more than 10 people I like more than them.
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Old 01-28-2012, 04:35 PM    (permalink
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A quick Google search shows there are 619 4 year public universities. 13/619 = .02 or 2%. Being in the top 2% of your field is pretty statistically significant. Given the sample size, looking at things in a simple top 10 or top 20 list is doing schools like Florida or Ohio State a major disservice. I would argue that everyone in the top 60 SHOULD be considered "one of the top academic universities in the country." Then again, we aren't even looking at the top academically, we're talking about the most respected. "Respected" is equally as vague as "one of." Based on that ranking system you posted, Minnesota is a better academic university than Penn State but ask an average person in Utah, who do you think they will say?

If you were making the argument that Penn State is no longer one of the most respected universities in the country anymore because of the Sandusky scandal and subsequent fall-out, I'd actually have little to no issue with it but statistically, your argument makes little to no sense.
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Old 01-28-2012, 09:14 PM    (permalink
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\Based on that ranking system you posted, Minnesota is a better academic university than Penn State but ask an average person in Utah, who do you think they will say?
Minnesota. If you asked 100 college professors which was the better research university, 100 of them would say Minnesota over Penn State. You could say the same for Michigan, Wisconsin, and Illinois (or Northwestern, if we're including private schools).

As for the statistical argument based on the number of public schools, I mean, c'mon. 500 of those 600 schools don't even try to be respected to the degree that a school like Penn State does. It's like comparing a minor league baseball team to the Phillies or something.
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Old 01-28-2012, 09:48 PM    (permalink
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Minnesota. If you asked 100 college professors which was the better research university, 100 of them would say Minnesota over Penn State. You could say the same for Michigan, Wisconsin, and Illinois (or Northwestern, if we're including private schools).
I said average person, not college professors but you made my point by having to change the demographic. There are quantifiable studies that show who ranks best at academics and research but the truth is, your average Joe doesn't know a single thing about those studies and when you tell the average person that you have a degree from Penn State, they respect that. Just like they would if you said you had a degree from Ohio State or Florida or UCLA or Michigan, etc etc. Perception is reality.
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Old 01-28-2012, 09:50 PM    (permalink
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I said average person, not college professors but you made my point by having to change the demographic. There are quantifiable studies that show who ranks best at academics and research but the truth is, your average Joe doesn't know a single thing about those studies and when you tell the average person that you have a degree from Penn State, they respect that. Just like they would if you said you had a degree from Ohio State or Florida or UCLA or Michigan, etc etc. Perception is reality.
Who in the hell cares what the average person thinks when it comes to academic quality?
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Old 01-28-2012, 09:53 PM    (permalink
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I thought we were arguing "one of the most respected state universities in the country"

Don't you need to, ya know, argue it in terms of the WHOLE country when discussing that statement?
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Old 01-28-2012, 10:38 PM    (permalink
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I thought we were arguing "one of the most respected state universities in the country"

Don't you need to, ya know, argue it in terms of the WHOLE country when discussing that statement?
Of course not.

For the record, I don't think the general public has a terribly high opinion of Penn State from an academic standpoint. But that's besides the point.

When you talk about the "most respected" movies, for example, you don't look at the box office sales, you look at Oscar wins. If you wanted to buy a car, you'd probably want the opinion of a mechanic, and not a hair dresser. The idea that the majority opinion matters is a total fallacy. This isn't American Idol.
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Old 01-29-2012, 07:03 AM    (permalink
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To each his own I guess. I still think the difference between say, the 8th and 13th best university is pretty negligible all things considered. Its pretty clear that you have a very negative opinion on Penn State because they are mediocre in your specific field. Penn State is a top ten school in my field, making it one of the more respected universities in the country for my field, even by your standards so we are clearly at an impasse.
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Old 01-29-2012, 09:41 AM    (permalink
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To each his own I guess. I still think the difference between say, the 8th and 13th best university is pretty negligible all things considered. Its pretty clear that you have a very negative opinion on Penn State because they are mediocre in your specific field. Penn State is a top ten school in my field, making it one of the more respected universities in the country for my field, even by your standards so we are clearly at an impasse.
To further your point, the difference between 8th and 13th when picking from thousands of US public universities is negligible.
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Old 01-29-2012, 12:11 PM    (permalink
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Of course not.

For the record, I don't think the general public has a terribly high opinion of Penn State from an academic standpoint. But that's besides the point.

When you talk about the "most respected" movies, for example, you don't look at the box office sales, you look at Oscar wins. If you wanted to buy a car, you'd probably want the opinion of a mechanic, and not a hair dresser. The idea that the majority opinion matters is a total fallacy. This isn't American Idol.
I would like to point out that when it comes to schools, the general population does have a say in it though, when you look at employers. I know from personal experience, that while Michigan is a better school than Michigan State, when you interview with companies based out of the Midwest, Michigan State looks just as good on paper as Michigan. People recognize the name, they know it's a relatively good school. I know people who go to Michigan in the same field, struggle through (sometimes more difficult) classes, and don't get any benefit for picking Michigan over Michigan State.
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Old 01-29-2012, 12:44 PM    (permalink
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I would like to point out that when it comes to schools, the general population does have a say in it though, when you look at employers. I know from personal experience, that while Michigan is a better school than Michigan State, when you interview with companies based out of the Midwest, Michigan State looks just as good on paper as Michigan. People recognize the name, they know it's a relatively good school. I know people who go to Michigan in the same field, struggle through (sometimes more difficult) classes, and don't get any benefit for picking Michigan over Michigan State.
Every single person in Michigan knows that Michigan is a better school than Michigan State. This includes alum of Michigan State.

While there are certainly some jobs that don't really care what degree you have, as long as you have a degree, often this is not the case. It just depends on the profession/job.
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Old 01-29-2012, 03:51 PM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by mriforgot View Post
I would like to point out that when it comes to schools, the general population does have a say in it though, when you look at employers. I know from personal experience, that while Michigan is a better school than Michigan State, when you interview with companies based out of the Midwest, Michigan State looks just as good on paper as Michigan. People recognize the name, they know it's a relatively good school. I know people who go to Michigan in the same field, struggle through (sometimes more difficult) classes, and don't get any benefit for picking Michigan over Michigan State.
There are people/companies that seriously believe MSU is a better school than Michigan? Are they hiring? Because my Iowa degree probably looks like Harvard to them...
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Old 01-29-2012, 03:59 PM    (permalink
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To each his own I guess. I still think the difference between say, the 8th and 13th best university is pretty negligible all things considered. Its pretty clear that you have a very negative opinion on Penn State because they are mediocre in your specific field. Penn State is a top ten school in my field, making it one of the more respected universities in the country for my field, even by your standards so we are clearly at an impasse.
Yeah, for my major PSU is 3rd in the nation and for my minor they're first.
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Old 01-29-2012, 05:24 PM    (permalink
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Yeah, for my major PSU is 3rd in the nation and for my minor they're first.
That's because there aren't many accredited pizza delivery programs in the US.
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Old 01-29-2012, 05:30 PM    (permalink
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That's because there aren't many accredited pizza delivery programs in the US.
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Old 02-14-2012, 05:11 PM    (permalink
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big lose!!! :-(
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Old 03-19-2012, 09:00 PM    (permalink
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The Supa Tenuo waving from the image of Joe seat I shed a tear. Say you want my school, but the couple contributed to their hearts, souls, savings, making the one of the most respected state universities in the country.
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Old 03-19-2012, 09:07 PM    (permalink
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Bumping the JoePa thread with spam is jacked up
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