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Soil Science Earns Top Rank

UCR's Program in Soil Science Earns Top Rank

New annual index of graduate programs ranks four other UCR programs in the top ten

(January 10, 2007)

RIVERSIDE, Calif. — When it comes to results, UC Riverside stacks up well. The latest example of this comes by way of the Faculty Scholarly Productivity Index™, a new annual index of graduate programs that rates faculty members’ scholarly output at nearly 7,300 doctoral programs in the United States. The index has given the top rank to UCR’s program in soil science, offered by the Department of Environmental Sciences.

Partly financed by the State University of New York at Stony Brook and produced by Academic Analytics, a for-profit company, the Faculty Scholarly Productivity Index™ uses data such as faculty publications, grants, and honors and awards to rank programs at institutions based on the research productivity of faculty members.

"UC-Riverside has had outstanding soil scientists for many years," said Steven R. Angle, dean of the College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences. "I am delighted that the Faculty Scholarly Productivity Index™ can quantify their quality into this number one ranking."

Marylynn V. Yates, chair of the Department of Environmental Sciences, commented, "The top rank is a testament to our vision for this program and to the dedication of our soil science faculty in providing the best research and education."

According to the index, four other graduate programs at UCR ranked in the top ten under the following disciplines: environmental health engineering (5); environmental science (8); plant pathology (10); and botany and plant biology (10).

The university maintains a long tradition of research excellence.

In 1997, a study by Hugh D. Graham, a professor of American history at Vanderbilt University, Tenn., and Nancy Diamond, then a doctoral candidate in policy sciences at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, ranked UCR first among public research institutions in terms of faculty per capita publications; fourth among 21 “rising” public research universities identified by the authors; and eleventh nationally among public universities in the entire breadth of disciplines — science, social science, and arts and humanities.

Last year, the Washington Monthly College Guide ranked UCR No. 22 among U.S. universities and colleges. The magazine editors based their rankings on whether colleges promoted service to the country, whether they were engines of mobility and whether they fostered scientific and humanistic research.

Recently, UCR’s A. Gary Anderson Graduate School of Management was named an outstanding business school by The Princeton Review’s “Best 282 Business Schools: 2007 Edition.”

The Department of Environmental Sciences’ graduate program in soil and water sciences offers comprehensive training in the chemistry, physics, biology, and ecology of soils, water bodies, and wetlands. It offers both M.S. and Ph.D. degrees. Students enrolled in the program specialize in a variety of areas, including soil and aquatic chemistry, watershed and groundwater hydrology, soil and aquatic microbiology, and soil-plant relations and biogeochemistry.

The University of California, Riverside ( is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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