Deakin ranked world's best for sports science

08 December 2016

Deakin University's School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences has been ranked the world's best by ShanghaiRanking's Global Ranking of Sport Science Schools and Departments 2016.

Released today, the ranking recognises academic excellence and industry-leading research.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Jane den Hollander said the accolade secured Deakin's reputation as a world-leader in academic excellence.

"Education and research are Deakin's DNA, and that's important in elevating the quality and breadth of our teaching and our research, and it also permeates everything else we do in the communities we serve," Professor den Hollander said.

“It means our approach is evidence based, we aspire to be at the forefront of new learning and we strive to prepare our students to be work ready and employable.

"Deakin strives every day to be amongst the best in Australia, but today, and for the first time in our short history, one of our key disciplines is rated as the very best, the top in the world.

"I am incredibly proud of the teaching and research staff that make up our School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences, led by Alfred Deakin Professor David Crawford, under the stewardship of our Executive Dean of the Faculty of Health, Professor Brendan Crotty.

"I acknowledge the hard work and thinking of this team and thank all of our staff within the School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences, our researchers and teachers, our students and our incredible and loyal partners for their contribution to this fantastic achievement."

The Global Ranking of Sport Science Schools and Departments assesses key areas, including the number of times research work is cited by others globally, and the total number of papers published, with a score awarded for the number published in the top 25 per cent of journals in the world.

Head of School Professor David Crawford said the school’s performance was led by work in its two research bodies - the Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition and the Centre for Sport Research.

"We've had a strong commitment to excellence for more than a decade now and we’re seeing the benefits of that," he said.

"We have a focus on building capacity, building expertise and building connections that means we attract the best staff and the best students.

"It's those staff doing that cutting edge research, allowing us to drive the agenda forward and have a significant impact across exercise, physical activity and sport."

Professor Crawford said the school had existed in its current form for just over 15 years, making its achievements even more astounding.

"We had the first course to be accredited by Exercise and Sports Science Australia in Victoria, and we have doubled in size over that time, both in terms of staffing and student numbers, and our research has gone through the roof," he said.

"But what's most important is that we're addressing issues that are relevant – solving real world problems for our communities today.

"Our courses have a strong scientific and theoretical basis, but our students also get a practical hands-on experience, and that’s essential in getting graduates ready to pursue their chosen careers."

Deakin's School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences offers a Bachelor of Exercise and Sports Science, a Masters of Clinical Exercise Physiology, and next year will offer a Masters of Applied Sports Science for the first time.

Today's result comes after Deakin's Medical School entered the top 150 in the world, according to the prestigious Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU), released in September. Deakin's School of Nursing and Midwifery was named 22nd in the world in the QS World University Rankings in March.

Deakin University is in the top two per cent of the world's universities in each of the three major international rankings including the ARWU (ranked 214th), Times Higher Education and QS World University Rankings. 

Learn more about the School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences

Learn more about the Centre for Sport Research

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Media release School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences Centre for Sports Research (CSR)

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