The 2017 Best Global Universities rankings by U.S. News & World Report affirms years of evaluations of the world's elite schools by that and other publications: Los Angeles is a hotbed for top-flight higher education.

Caltech in Pasadena ranked fifth. UCLA ranked 10th. Caltech helped the United States dominate the list's top five, which also included Stanford (third) and UC Berkeley (fourth). Harvard was first and MIT was second. 

UCLA put some spin on the showing, noting that it came in second, behind big bro Berkeley, when it comes to public schools. “UCLA has consistently performed well in a variety of national and international rankings,” according to a statement. “In September, UCLA ranked No. 14 worldwide and No. 10 in the United States in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings.”

Other Golden State schools did well, too. UC San Diego came in 15th place; UC San Francisco was 16th; UC Santa Barbara was 24th; UC Santa Cruz was 27th; and UC Davis was 42nd. USC ranked 53rd. UC Irvine came in 65th

“U.S. universities do especially well in the Best Global Universities rankings because they place an enormous emphasis on academic research — a key factor in our methodology, since these are indicators that can be compared globally,” says Robert Morse, chief data strategist at U.S. News. “This methodology is different from that of [U.S. News'] Best Colleges [list], which measures the overall quality of undergraduate education and focuses on outcomes including graduation and retention rates.”

U.S. schools took 210 of the top 1,000 spots. Chinese institutions showed up 87 times, followed by the U.K. (68), Germany (55) and France (49).

The publication explained that it looked at “a university’s global and regional research reputation and academic research performance using bibliometric indicators such as publications, citations and international collaboration.”

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