Does Size Matter? An Evaluation of Institutional Internet Ranking Metrics
24 Pages Posted: 12 Jan 2020
Date Written: August 23, 2019
Institutional Internet presence and popularity ranking systems—such as Webometrics—are novel and purport to consider institutional size (in workforce and Internet volume) when ranking institutions of higher education. Using statistical methods and the Google Trends database, this study found influence of institutional size and Internet presence as a major contributing factor to institutional ranking. As a result, smaller, less-wealthy institutions are disadvantaged by these ranking systems. We conclude by proposing feasible methods of normalizing and equalizing these factors, allowing prospective students and other educational stakeholders a more accurate evaluation of an institution’s Internet presence and popularity.
Keywords: institutional ranking, Internet popularity, Internet presence, Google Trends
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