History and veterinary science are among the eight individual subject departments across three Irish universities rated among the world’s top 50 in a new league table.
Trinity College Dublin (TCD), University College Dublin (UCD) and University College Cork (UCC) have disciplines listed in the top 50 in the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2015, naming the top global universities in 36 disciplines.
Trinity leads the way for Ireland with five subject areas: English language and literature (32nd), politics and international studies, (joint 33rd), history, (39th), biological sciences (48th) and modern languages (joint 49th).
UCD has two, with 40th placing in veterinary science and 45th in development studies, while UCC is 49th in pharmacy.
Trinity has nine further subject areas in the top 100: chemistry, computer science, education, geography, law, medicine, pharmacy, philosophy and psychology, while UCD has seven: English language and literature, history, modern languages agriculture, geography, law and political and international studies.
A new entry for Ireland this year is the National College of Art and Design (NCAD), which makes the top 100 in art and design. In all, the subject departments of 10 Irish colleges take up 88 places across the tables, of which 69 are in the top 200. The other Irish institutions listed are NUI Galway, Maynooth University, Dublin City University, the University of Limerick, Dublin Institute of Technology and the Royal College of Surgeons Ireland.
Compared with last year, 36 subject departments in Ireland maintained their position, 22 moved up, 14 are new entries and 16 were dropped.
The rankings are based on the expert opinion of 85,062 academics and 41,910 employers, an analysis of 17.3 million research papers and over 100 million research citations.
American universities dominate in terms of the numbers of subjects in which they lead, reflecting their pole position generally in such rankings.
TCD Dean and Vice-President of Research Professor Vinny Cahill said it was particularly important that employers as well as academics were consulted for these rankings, demonstrating how well-regarded Trinity graduates were by employers worldwide.
UCD president Professor Andrew Deeks said their strong performance demonstrated the comprehensive balance of their disciplines and the value of their interdisciplinary approach to research.