The new US News & World Report college rankings are out, and it's a mixed bag for Pioneer Valley schools, UMass Amherst dropped a spot in the national university rankings -- from 74 last year to 75. Its ranking has remained relatively steady since a big improvement four years ago.
In the national liberal arts category, a pair of western Massachusetts schools again top the list. For the ninth straight year, WiIlliams College is first, followed by Amherst College. Smith is 12th and Mount Holyoke 36th.
The remaining member of the Five Colleges -- Hampshire -- is unranked because it doesn't accept standardized test scores for admission, although Hampshire did earn a spot on the magazine's most innovative list.