According to the annual world university ranking by THES, a total of 20 US institutions made into the World Top 50 list:

US Rank, Institution
1 HARVARD University

2 YALE University

3 CALIFORNIA Institute of Technology

4 University of CHICAGO

5 MASSACHUSETTS Institute of Technology

6 COLUMBIA University

7 U of PENNSYLVANIA

8 PRINCETON U

9 DUKE U

9 JOHNS HOPKINS U

11 CORNELL U

12 STANFORD U

13 U of MICHIGAN

14 CARNEGIE MELLON U

15 BROWN U

16 U of CALIFORNIA, Los Angeles

17 NORTHWESTERN U

18 U of California, BERKELEY

19 NEW YORK U (NYU)

20 BOSTON Uni

Source: Times Higher Education Supplement 2008

* Next post: Top US Universities in Webometrics Ranking 2009

World University Ranking Tables

America - US News & World Report, The Princeton Review, BusinessWeek
Canada - Maclean's, Gourman Report Ranking of Canadian Universities
UK - Sunday Times, Guardian, Times Good University Guide, Daily Telegraph
World - Shanghai Jiao Tong ARWU Rankings, Webometrics, Newsweek
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