This year, UR was not included in this year’s Princeton Review rankings.While this may appear to be a great error on the part of Public Relations, it is a triumphant stand against biased rankings.

In January 2007, UR critiqued the Review’s methods of obtaining every student’s e-mail address in order to send a survey via e-mail. The school recognized this as an invasion of student privacy and found it too unreasonable for actual consideration.

Since UR refused to participate in these methods, the Review dropped the University from its book. Despite this chide, UR’s decision to protect the privacy of students and its condemnation of inappropriate surveying is admirable.

The University has fallen in multiple rankings this year, and this is not to be ignored. However, discrepancies in closely ranked elite schools, such as UR and its peer University Athletic Association members, can cause a school to drop disproportionately in the rankings. Simplifying these separate colleges into an ordered list is nearly impossible to do without vast errors.

UR applications have even grown this year, in spite of the snub. Princeton Review is not the only name in the game, and college applicants are seeking other sources, such as the Web site College Confidential and the popular U.S. News and World Report. Rankings are an important part of college admissions culture and an opportunity for publicity. For this reason, but more importantly because the Review has corrected its surveys to less intrusive methods, UR will likely appear in the Review rankings this fall.

The University acted correctly in protecting students from participating in a faulty survey that ignores these factors. In the cutthroat chaos of college admissions, UR took a commendable stand. The University stuck to its morals despite the intense pressure of the college admissions frenzy, and that is more important than any number.

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