Props to Utah State. but BYU still not measuring up

This article I am linking points out Utah State being upgraded in it’s acclaim for research. Conspicuous absence of noting BYU as a top tier research facility. Ive tried repeatedly to explain to Zoobs and such that no Pac12 invite was PRIMARILY because they just didn’t cut it academically. A decade later and they still aren’t an elite research university.

I’m pretty sure BYU doesn’t aspire to be a top research school. I think I remember some issues they have with conditions tied to a lot of the federal grant money. They are content to provide a high quality undergrad and graduate level education at a discount for LDS students in a spiritual bubble.

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I’ll fix this for you


So your saying the honor code and HC office doesn’t exist? Or mandatory religion classes? Approved and segregateg (by gender) housing only for students? Or that tuition isn’t subsidized by church funds?

I’m not saying these things with judgement. It is what the sponsoring religion wants the school to be. It’s just funny when either fans or detractors of BYU try to make it something other thrown what it is.


How can you have a high quality graduate program without a high quality research program? You can’t. A PhD in biology from the U is worth a crap tonne more than a PhD in biology (if they even offer it) from Provo Tech. I mean BYU. In fact, because the U has at least one Nobel Prize winner in their Biology department, I’d say that a Utah PhD is a light year or so ahead of BYU.

But what do I know. I got my PhD from Syracuse which got kicked out of the AUU. :cry:


Their Business, Law, Education, and Nursing graduate schools are all top 100 in the USNews rankings. Areas where they can prices a great education without relying on research.

I’m sorry, but the only thing that matters is the basic sciences and engineering (along with a medical school) when talking about research. Nursing graduate schools train administrators. Law and Business schools are nothing but cash cows for universities, and neither of those schools match up with the top in the West. F

Why are you defending those losers down south? It’s a crap school with crap Academy of Sciences. They will not design artificial organs. They’ll do nothing.

And that is why they never got a sniff from the PAC12. Only a desperate, faltering Big12/gave them a shot. And they’ll be crushed there, every single day of the week. .


My premise is that they are not, nor aspire to be a top tier research school. I’m not defending them. They are what they are. They are a university that does a great job at providing undergrad and select, non-research grad education, within the construct that their sponsor religion has created.


I’m sorry, but because of the “construct that their sponsor religion has created,” they cannot do a “great job” at providing higher education.

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That sounds like a pretty biased opinion, not an objective fact. A lot of university ranking systems disagree.


Their law school is in the top 30 or 40. A lot of that has to do with knowing how to work the ranking system. Still, all law schools play that game. Taylor Randall has set a goal for the U’s law school to become one of the top 10 state-owned law school. (They’re 40th now.) I think that’s do-able. I suspect BYU Law has plateaued where they are. They attract highly-qualified students because they’re well-ranked and they offer amazingly low tuition for LDS students–as well as scholarships–that no other comparable school can match Still, being a religious school places some limits on them.

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I’ll own my bias, but the ranking systems don’t take academic freedom and similar intangibles into account. Those unaccounted-for factors are essential to real-world career readiness.


Sorry but USNews rankings are a lower tier ranking system that overly rely on school popularity. That school is popular because LDS kids get highly subsidized tuition to an out of state school.
The better ranking systems like QS, Times Higher Education, and ARWU all rank BYU fairly low because in truth they lack academic rigor. They are a decent school but I would not classify them as a high quality academic institution. They simply are not.



Until they develop some academic freedom, and researchers can explore topics of interest without the worry / threat of being disciplined or fired, they won’t be taken seriously as a research university.

There is some research that comes out of BYU, but it’s within the parameters of what the employer will not find objectionable. In some areas of study, this concern takes up a lot of energy.

Even so, within the social-political context BYU operates, they’re considered by many to be infested with out-of-step liberals.

So, they’re not conservative enough in the community - eg, “Office of Belonging” - and they’re not taken seriously among research universities. They’re in their own tight little canyon, but we already knew that.


This is correct. The reality, however, is that, for better or for worse, virtually all law schools, and all the big law firms that the schools hope will hire their students, pay a lot of attention—probably too much—to U.S. News. They don’t look at anything else. It’s an easy way to decide where to interview/from where to take resumes. I’ve always thought it was silly.

Individual law firms do decide where they will interview, and they will take into account academic freedom and diversity among the student body and faculty, But the rankings are based on numbers. (The BYU law school is so starved for diversity that if an applicant is in any diverse category and has middling grades and LSAT scores, he/she is admitted.)

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They do well at what they focus on — preparing students for graduate programs at top universities. Also some of their undergraduate programs are highly thought of - accounting for example. MBAs and law do well with employers as well.

Solid education if you can get past the goofiness.

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It would be interesting to see which BigLaw firms without a significant Intermountain West connection actively recruit at BYU. My firm does not, but we don’t have offices in the Intermountain West.

In my 38 years of experience in BigLaw, such firms recruit at BYU because there is an alumnus who is a partner at the firm.

To be fair, I will say that the top law graduates from both BYU and Utah perform very well. I’ve never seen an exception.

Does the BigXII not require their Universities to be R1? Apparently not if BYU is in.

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Big 12 just trying to stay alive …