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Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) is a British company specialising in education. [1] The company was founded in 1990 [2] by Nunzio Quacquarelli and Matt Symonds.[3]


The company was founded between 1988 and 1990 as a student initiative whilst Nunzio Quacquarelli was completing his MBA at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. It held its first World MBA Tour in 1995. It provided its first QS Top MBA listing in 1996. This listing ranks the top business schools in the world. A career program, called the QS Career Forums was launched in 2002. They launched the QS World University Rankings n collaboration with the Times Higher Education in 2004. QS acquired German software company unisolution, a European supplier of software solutions and services for institutions of higher education in 2009.

Major rankingsEdit

QS has published various university rankings.

At first, it had cooperated with the Times Higher Education to release annual world university rankings, the THE-QS World University Rankings, since 2004 and was the data provider of the rankings. However, it ended its partnership with Times after the release of their 2009 rankings and both have worked out their own rankings afterward with QS using the same methodology while Times which has then cooperated with Thomson Reuters using an adjusted one. Now, the rankings published by QS are known as the QS World University Rankings.

Generally, the QS World University Rankings is regarded as one of the three most influential university rankings in the world, along with the Times Higher Education World University Rankings and the Academic Ranking of World Universities.[4][5][6] However The old iterations of the rankings produced collaboratively by THE and QS Quacquarelli Symonds received a number of criticisms. Some critics expressed concern about the manner in which the peer review conducted by THE-QS was carried out.