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USM’s School of Education ranked among best in state


HATTIESBURG, Miss. () – The University of Southern Mississippi’s (USM) was recently ranked as the 99th best nationwide by .

The Best Education Schools  evaluate programs on nine distinct factors that include indicators related to student selectivity, faculty resources, research activity and peer assessment. USM is tied with  other schools nationwide for having the 99th-best education program in the country. It ranked second among three Mississippi universities ranked by U.S. News & World Report this year. The University of Mississippi ranked 54th with three other universities and Jackson State University ranked 163rd with two other universities.

The rankings evaluate all public and private institutions nationwide to empower prospective students to choose the best fit for their educational needs and career goals. Five other Mississippi schools with education programs -Belhaven University, Delta State University, Mississippi College, Mississippi State University and William Carey University- were unranked. 

In 2023, USM ranked 138th nationally. The year-over-year climb that allowed USM to break into the top 100 schools was achieved in part by other colleges of education across the nation taking notice of the impact Golden Eagles are making and commending those efforts through the peer evaluation process. For Lance Nail, USM Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, he is proud of the strides the university has made in the past year. 

“Thanks to the dedication of our faculty and staff, Southern Miss graduates are ready for success in classrooms across our state and nation,” Nail said in a . 

Trent Gould, dean of USM’s College of Education and Human Sciences, expressed a similar sentiment. 

“The USM School of Education has been intentional in its efforts to increase the societal impact it makes in the state and region. This ranking is clear evidence of their daily dedication to our mission of transforming the human condition through exemplary teaching, excellence in research, and meaningful service,” Gould said.

The USM School of Education offers an undergraduate program in elementary education as well as graduate programs in educational administration, higher education, elementary curriculum and instruction, special education, alternate route licensure, dyslexia therapy and educational research. For Joseph Paul, USM President, this ranking harkens back to why USM originally began. 

“We were founded with the audacious goal of establishing a state teacher training college, and these rankings demonstrate our ongoing excellence and steadfast commitment to providing high-quality instruction,” Paul said. “We are honored to be recognized on the national level and proud to be one of only two schools in the state to make the top 100 list.”

By collecting education school data annually, U.S. News presents the latest enrollment numbers, job placement rates, faculty statistics and other essential quality indicators that help prospective students make informed decisions. Prospective students can see how USM compares to other institutions and how the rankings are calculated on .

To  about the USM College of Education and Human Sciences, call 601.266.4568.