Kansas University leads Big Eight schools and ranks seventh among the country's state universities in academic quality, says the newest edition of a prestigious college guide.
The 1992 "Fiske Guide to Colleges," written by Edward Fiske of The New York Times, awarded KU four stars out of five for academics. KU also received four stars last year.
"The University of Kansas remains the academic flagship of the Big Eight Conference," KU Chancellor Gene Budig said.
An independent study by the College of Wooster in Wooster, Ohio., cited Fiske's guide as the country's most informative.
The Fiske guide, and others like it, are used by people who want help deciding where to attend college.
In the new edition, KU received four stars for quality of life on campus and in the community as well as quality of social life for students. KU got the same ratings in the 1991 edition.
"A very special university has been built over the past 125 years on Mount Oread, and the people of Kansas have a right to be especially proud," Budig said.
KU is the only Kansas school cited in the guide, which purports to include the "best and most interesting institutions in the nation."
Reviews are based on Fiske's personal insights and surveys of students and campus officials. Fiske visited KU in 1990.
In the new edition, he praised the KU schools of architecture and urban design, allied health, pharmacy, nursing, education, business, engineering and journalism.
In the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, he lauded programs in English, foreign languages (especially Spanish and Portuguese), chemistry and philosophy.
Fiske also recommended the college's honors program, and commented favorably about the beauty of KU's Lawrence campus.
"Anyone with a knee-jerk regional prejudice against the midwestern countryside (no, it's not all flat and colorless) should visit Kansas in the fall to witness breathtaking foliage," he wrote.