Tulane University's business school misreported data, including admission-test scores and the number of applications, to U.S. News & World Report for an undetermined number of years. Tulane, which reported this finding to the magazine, has hired two firms to determine what happened and said a report should be complete by mid-January.
U.S. News publishes influential listings that rank colleges, business and law schools, and universities covet high placement on them. While university representatives say they do not know precisely how the numbers were goosed, the erroneous numbers presumably boosted Tulane's ranking.
"We deeply regret that this occurred," said Ira Solomon, dean of the A.B. Freeman School of Business, in a statement.
The misreporting came to light during the fall semester, when the school noticed test scores and the number of applicants this year "skewed lower than the previous two years" as it was preparing information about its master of business administration program to send to U.S. News, according to a statement from Tulane spokesman Mike Strecker.