QS Arts 2022 ranking: five French art schools in the top 100 of the best establishments in the world

Already well known in France, five public art schools have managed to stand out internationally in the QS ranking by discipline 2022: the National Higher Conservatoires of Music and Dance in Paris and Lyon for the Performing and Decorative Arts (ENSAD), ENSCI- Les Ateliers, Beaux-Arts de Paris for the Art and Design category.

If France manages to climb to the ninth place of the best higher education systems in the world, it will not only be thanks to its excellent training in the humanities and social sciences… According to the QS 2022 ranking by discipline, the results of which were published on April 6 French art schools have nothing to be ashamed of. On the contrary, because five of them climbed into the top 100 this year.

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The CNSMD of Paris and the ENSAD at the top of the best French art schools

At the outpost, the National Conservatory of Music and Dance (CNSMD) in Paris† The school ranks fourth in the “Performing Arts” category. “It is a real pleasure to receive this recognition after all the efforts made, despite the health crisis”, says Emilie Delorme, the director.

The Conservatory has seen a nice rise in the rankings in just two years, from 17th place in 2020 to 5th place in 2021. His current position had never been higher in the QS rankings. “Despite the weight of the school’s history [créée en 1795, ndlr] and its excellence, we have demonstrated our ability to renew ourselves. We need to maintain this positive momentum“, continues the one who arrived at the head of the conservatory at the time of the health crisis.

On the “Art and Design” side, ENSAD (National School of Decorative Arts) is the first French art school in the QS 2022 ranking. “We’re only 30, we’re happy, but you have to know how to stay humble and humble. There is still room at the global level…“, estimates Emmanuel Tibloux, director of Decorative Arts.

According to him, international rankings are not negligible, especially for “the effects they produce” on students, teachers and on the entire artistic sector. “We’re not specifically working on appearing well in these rankings, but they remain fundamental to the attractiveness of schools.”

QS Ranking 2022 – Art and Design
Rank 2022 School Country Position in 2021
1 Royal College of Art England 1
2 University of the Arts London England 2
3 The new school UNITED STATES
30 National School of Decorative Arts (ENSAD) France 39
33 ENSCI-The Workshops France 26
51-100 National School of Fine Arts in Paris France 51-100

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Staying Attractive to Promote Diversity in Art Schools

Like the Parisian CNSMD, Lyon’s CNSMD ranks among the best performing arts schools and ranks 19th. in design, ENSCI-Les Ateliers is located just behind ENSAD, in 33rd place. The School of Fine Arts in Paris is between 51st and 100th place.

So many establishments that are already highly coveted, known and recognized in France, and which, good news, are becoming more and more on a global scale. So what? “We aim to attract all talents, French or international. We focus on diversity, it is a strong axis of my project for the school. Because diversity is a yeast of creativity“, emphasizes Emmanuel Tibloux.

The Paris CNSMD doesn’t rely on international rankings to develop strategy, but they can sometimes provide direction. †This can be an asset for recruiting international teachers. From now on we will position ourselves more actively in this English-language logic,” says Emilie Delorme. That is also the whole point of the project of enlarged greenhouse worn by the school. In particular, the CNSMD should create an online campus in a “need for international competitiveness”.

QS Ranking 2022 – Performing Arts
Rank 2022 School Country Position in 2021
1 Royal College of Music England 2
2 Universität für Musik und Darstellende Kunst Wien Austria 7
3 The Juilliard School UNITED STATES 1
4 National Conservatory of Music and Dance of Paris France 5
19 Lyon National Conservatory of Music and Dance France 51-100

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Academically and professionally excellent art schools

But more broadly, the QS 2022 ranking mainly reveals that after a two-year health crisis, the academic reputation (one of the QS ranking criteria) of art schools therefore still seems intact. At the Paris Conservatoire, maintaining this bond with teachers and students was essential, even during the incarceration. †During the crisis we did not close our doors, we did everything we could to maintain an activity. We were also very vigilant about professional integrationwe mobilized and created contracts with Radio France, the Paris Opera, the Philharmonie…”, emphasizes Emilie Delorme.

Professional reputation is also another criterion examined by the QS. The strategy has paid off for the conservatory, whose the integration rate is quite high, “between 90 and 100% depending on the discipline”. While for ENSAD it is precisely this criterion that prevents its progress. “Unsurprisingly, the school covers ten creative sectors, so employers identify us at the secondary level, after citing a specialized institution like ENSCI-Les Ateliers in design. However, our integration rate is over 90% in three years, but everyone in France knows that and that’s why we always have more candidates‘ the director justifies.

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A French reputation focused on complementarity

However, there is no competition. Even though ENSCI-Les Ateliers has often led the race for ENSAD in the QS ranking, the two art schools claim to be complementary. The same observation for the two conservatories in Paris and Lyon: “We work closely together. We are competitors in some areas, but complementary in others”, supports Emilie Delorme.

In 2021, the CNSMDs also signed a collaboration agreement for: strengthen this cooperation and carry out joint actions in the field of pedagogy, research, representations… A common impulse that seems to be working, the Lyon CNSMD is experiencing a good rise in the international ranking this year (from 51st to 100th place since 2020).

“The challenge of this attractiveness is rather to contribute to increasing this reputation of French higher education, which is outstanding… you have yet to say it”, concludes Emmanuel Tibloux.

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