Morning Consult’s Most Trusted Brands report measures public trust in the top 135 doctoral research universities, with Baylor at No. 9

August 4, 2022

WACO, Texas (Aug. 3, 2022) – Baylor University was named among the nation’s top 10 Most Trusted Universities, according to global research firm Morning Consult as part of its Most Trusted Brands project, the definitive measure of brand trust across industries, including the most trusted brands in higher education.

Morning Consult’s Most Trusted Universities report measures public trust in the top 135 doctoral research universities featured in the U.S. News’ 2022 Best National University Rankings and explores how trust varies among diverse groups and different types of institutions.

The top 10 Most Trusted Universities are:

  1. Johns Hopkins University
  2. Duke University
  3. University of Notre Dame
  4. Cornell University
  5. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  6. Stanford University
  7. Yale University
  8. Harvard University
  9. Baylor University
  10. Princeton University

Baylor also was ranked No. 2 among Morning Consult’s Most Trusted Universities by parents, behind Princeton and ahead of Duke, Notre Dame and Yale.

“Brand awareness is one of the key determinants of trust in universities,” the Morning Consult report stated. “Those that made our Most Trusted list exhibit a high level of brand awareness owing to a variety of factors including longevity, highly regarded faculty, successful alumni and public engagement… These universities also benefited from trust generated by their promoters while avoiding distrust fomented by their detractors.”

“Such recognition is certainly a testament to the campus-wide efforts of our dedicated faculty and staff who live and promote Baylor’s Christian mission every day as well as the overall Baylor Family who serve as our brand ambassadors across the country,” said Baylor President Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D. “We have made tremendous advances as an institution over the past five-plus years, including our recent recognition as a Research 1 university and unparalleled success in so many areas across the campus.”

Morning Consult’s report is based on survey conducted June 11-15, 2022, among a representative sample of 11,050 U.S. adults, with an unweighted margin of error of +/-1 percentage point. An additional survey was conducted June 13-24, 2022, among 1,000 high schoolers ages 16 to 18, with an unweighted margin of error of +/-3 percentage points. Universities are sorted by net trust, or the share of respondents who said they trust each brand to do the right thing “a lot” or “some” minus the share who said “not much” or “not at all.”

“Higher education institutions in general, and research universities specifically, are complex entities that serve multiple stakeholders through their teaching, research and service mission. Higher education holds strong public trust compared with other U.S. institutions such as the government, corporations and the media. However, the level of trust in colleges and universities is lower among one of the most critical segments of the population: young adults. This suggests that in order to ensure the sustainability of future enrollment, universities need to double down on understanding what drives trust and how it can be strengthened.”

Morning Consult conducts regular survey research with The New York Times and is widely referenced by many other national media outlets.

Download the full report on the Morning Consult website.