New Schools in Texas at VH/R1Research Level

So Texas now has 8 schools at this level with the addition of
UTSA and Baylor.

Can never rest on our past achievements. I’m wondering if the Carnegie rating criteria
will need to be refined as more schools achieve this level of performance. And pursuit
of getting the AAU invite becomes more important now to distinguish UH.

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Renu will get us AAU. She hasn’t failed yet on any goals and it’s the last big prize. I’m confident she will get it down in the 5 yr plan or so. Plus she’s respected all around so we have a great shot.


Oh, I second that opinion and have no doubts about plan or leadership to
get there. I’m just suspicious if it is a somewhat political process or purely merit based.
I have no real in-depth knowledge here on either supposition, but just curious.
May be a combination of both. I’m curious if our 2 instate big brother public schools would sponsor.


Right. I fear it’s political, which is why I hold little hope unless we can form a friendship/kinship with some already established out of state school. BS political game the AAU.

I am fine with more Texas schools getting VH/R1 status. We should not pocket watch UTSA or Texas Tech. UH should get our house in order and make sure we are getting our fair share of federal research dollars. That is the key. The reason BIG Ten schools are all AAU (except Nebraska) is because they receive massive federal research grants.

UH currently receives about $200 m in federal research dollars. To put it in perspective, Cincinnati gets $530 million, Temple gets $284 million, UCF gets $225 million, USF gets $385 million, Louisville gets $173 million, Texas Tech gets $249 million, University of Illinois - Chicago gets $382 million and VCU gets $255 million. So, compared to our peers (large, urban universities), we are middle to lower end.

We should be aiming to get to the level of Cincinnati, Temple and USF. Now I will grant that each of those schools have medical schools; now that we have one, it should help. With that said, our medical school will focus more on primary care, so we may not get as much research dollars as we may otherwise. Therefore, we will need to fine other ways where UH can become the “go to” school for a particular field. I say energy, space and chemicals/specialty materials should be UH’s areas to focus on.


Actually, Nebraska does too.

They simply don’t get the RIGHT KIND of federal research grants that the AAU prefers.

Most of their federal research grants are USDA research grants, which are typically awarded without a competitive process, and which, moreover, have outputs that are generally not peer reviewed. For that reason, the AAU doesn’t esteem that type of research as highly.

When the AAU stopped counting those types of research dollars in their metrics…it basically DOOMED Nebraska’s AAU status.

I know, I was just pointing out that Nebraska is not AAU.

My understanding is that what really hurt Nebraska was that the AAU would not allow it to include the research money from the University of Nebraska Medical Center, which technically is part of the University of Nebraska-Omaha, not Lincoln. That costs them about $194 million in federal funding numbers.

This also impacts other schools like Alabama. University Alabama-Birmingham (UAB) gets over $600 million a year in federal research because of its medical complex, that is not counted toward UA -Tuscaloosa’s research funding numbers.

To compare - UA-Tuscaloosa only received $84 million in federal research. UA-Huntsville received $110 million. Auburn got $231 million, which I am sure must really stick in their craw.

The AAU is unambiguously political. There are metrics they look at when considering new schools, but at the end of the day it’s very much about who wants you to sit at the table with them.

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How much will our medical school help with research $

“Political” might be one of the most abused words used these days.

What does that mean?

The AAU is basically a club. A club gets to determine its membership, generally.

If you want to join Skull and Bones, you’d better not show up in cut-offs and flip flops.

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Not sure how much, but it’ll certainly help.

Having an on campus medical school is what MOST AAU schools have.

Two that have recently lost their AAU status (Nebraska and Iowa State) both lack one.

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Man bad news for Iowa State. If surrendering AAU status is due to a lack of a medical school, Rice better watch out. Oregon too.

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Oregon has been presumed to be on the chopping block for a while. More than the medical school thing, it seems like the AAU is discounting Ag research. Rice is probably safe; its research output is low, but the AAU cares about research output per faculty member, which is a metric by which Rice does much better.

Very surprised to see Baylor elevated to the R1 level.

Annual research budget as of 2020 was only $39 million.

OTOH, I don’t see how Cincy isn’t AAU. Their research budget of $530 million is way higher than many AAU members. Medical and Engineering schools on campus.


Ditto on Baylor.

UC has the same problem we do ; an elephant ( or two) in the state.
They even have a 1.6 billion endowment,

Does R1 require specific targets to meet? If so, any school that reaches those targets can become R1.

I had thought R1 was $100 million. As of 2020, Baylor wasn’t close.

I could be wrong about the benchmark though.

They also have U.S. senators that support them viz Utah.

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As a U of Iowa Alum, I should not care about ISU and should be dancing on its grave, but their departure from the AAU just doesn’t sit right with me.

I know the AAU is a private organization and it can set its own membership requirements and decide who it wants in and out, but the trajectory on which the AAU is heading will result in only schools with heavy medical and/or tech (i.e. Silicon Valley) research. That is why Carnegie Mellon, another university without a law or medical school, still is included, yet ISU and Nebraska are both gone. Carnegie Mellon is a preeminent center for AI research, and the tech world has a b****r for that technology.

I mean how on earth can an organization not weigh the benefits of ag research in a world where food supplies are getting thinner due to disease, famine, climate change/disaster, etc.? If anything, I would think that these should be getting way more recognition and way more research funding.


When I look at the Carnegie site it has what seems like a paltry amount of only $5 million of
NSF funds to meet the R1 or VH designation. Is that a typo ? I would have sworn that it used to be much higher for that designation. Shocked to see this; but would explain Baylors rapid ascension.

Doctoral Universities

Includes institutions that awarded at least 20 research/scholarship doctoral degrees during the update year and also institutions with below 20 research/scholarship doctoral degrees that awarded at least 30 professional practice doctoral degrees in at least 2 programs. Excludes Special Focus Institutions and Tribal Colleges.

The first two categories include only institutions that awarded at least 20 research/scholarship doctoral degrees and had at least $5 million in total research expenditures (as reported through the National Science Foundation (NSF) Higher Education Research & Development Survey (HERD)).

  • R1: Doctoral Universities – Very high research activity
  • R2: Doctoral Universities – High research activity
  • D/PU: Doctoral/Professional Universities

I sent an email IU about this.

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