Russia's two most well known universities — Moscow State University and St. Petersburg State University — have dropped for the third year in a row in a global ranking conducted by Quacquarelli Symonds.
This year, MGU is in overall 116th place, which makes it the top Russian university on the list. But it's down from last year's ranking of 112, as well as its position in 2010, which was 93rd. St. Petersburg State University was ranked 253rd this year, versus 251st in 2011 and 210th in 2010.
The two universities did poorly when it came to academic writing in international journals on the part of the teaching staff, as well as the quantity of international students and teachers. But MGU did score well in terms of its academic reputation and its reputation among employers, at 95th place and 99th place, respectively.
The ranking is based on qualitative indicators, as well as opinion surveys of companies, professors and academic experts. More than 16,000 employers and 32,000 experts participated in this year's survey. The opinion of 120,000 students from 500 universities worldwide was also factored into the rating.
There were 14 Russian institutions that made the ranking, including two new-comers: The Far Eastern Federal University and The Plekhanov Economic Academy. Some Russian universities moved up the ranking by more than 20 places: The Higher Economics School, Novosibirsk State University, Peoples' Friendship University, Bauman State Technical University and Moscow State Institute of International Relations. Altai State University dropped off the list this year.