University description (as per official university website)
The University of São Paulo (USP) is a public university, government agency linked to the State Department of Higher Education of São Paulo. The talent and dedication of teachers, students and staff have been recognized by various world rankings, designed to measure the quality of universities from different criteria, especially those related to scientific productivity.
Currently, the most important rankings are those of the Institute of Higher Education Shanghai Jiao Tong University, established in 2003, and the Times (2004). In the latest edition of Shanghai University (2009), which ranks the 500 best universities in the world, the USP was the 115 th position. The index of The Times is made up of 200 academic institutions world's most important. In this, the University of São Paulo was in 2008 in 196 th place.
The 2009 Performance Ranking of Scientific Papers for World Universities, the Higher Education Evaluation & Accreditation Council of Taiwan, which also ranks the top 500 teaching and research institutions in the world, awarded the USP to 78 th position. The institution is the first place, the ranking among Latin American universities. In reaching this result, the Council of Taiwan analyzed data obtained from the Science Citation Index (SCI) and Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI).
In other classification deemed important by the scientific community, the Webometrics Ranking of World Universities, the University is the 53 th place, the most highly regarded in Latin America.
This performance generated over nearly 75 years of intense pursuit of excellence, enables the USP (founded in 1934) joining a select group of world-class institutions.
His undergraduate degree is made up of 229 courses, dedicated to all areas of knowledge, divided into 40 units and offered to almost 56 000 students.
To develop its activities, the USP has different campuses in the towns of São Paulo, Ribeirão Preto, Piracicaba, São Carlos, Pirassununga, Bauru and Lorraine, and teaching units, museums and research centers outside of these spaces and different municipalities.
The international focus has been since its foundation, made from the union of schools that already existed and through the significant role played by missions in foreign teachers, mainly French, Italians and Germans, who came to teach at the old School of Philosophy, Science and Letters, whose posterior division generated most of the colleges and institutes of the University.
The new demands of globalization have led to the USP accelerating the process of internationalization of its teaching and research, through actions that have produced excellent results, such as increasing the number of teachers and students to exchange and performance of the institution in the rankings mentioned, which indicates that the University of São Paulo is still on track, combining tradition with innovation for the development of Brazilian society and the world.