The latest round of the influential QS World University Rankings has been released – and it doesn't bode particularly well for Irish third-level institutions.

Trinity College Dublin remains the only university in this country to break into the Top 100 for 2015/16, but even it has fallen a significant seven places to No. 78.

University College Dublin is next up: making No. 154 – down from 139 last year.

Meanwhile, University College Cork has also taken a tumble: from 230 to 233. 

Bucking the trend at least is the National University of Ireland, Galway – which managed to climb nine places to 271, as well as Dublin City University, up 13 places to 353.

Hovering around the 600-650-mark is NUI Maynooth, Ireland's lowest placed university.

So all-in-all, it hardly makes for encouraging reading for third-level students and academics in this country.

Unsurprisingly, the Top 10 list is dominated by some of the most famous institutions in the world – most of which are based in either the US or the UK. 

The Massachusetts Institute Of Technology is again the best in the world, followed closely by the likes of Harvard University (No. 2), and the University Of Cambridge and Stanford University (joint third).

University Of Oxford and University College London make up numbers six and seven respectively. 

Yale University is at No. 15, while the University Of Edinburgh just misses out on a Top 20 place at No. 21.


The QS Top 100 World Universities:

1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) 
2. Harvard University 
3= University of Cambridge 
3= Stanford University 
5. California Institute of Technology (CALTECH) 
6. University of Oxford 
7. UCL (University College London) 
8. Imperial College London 
9. Eth Zurich (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology) 
10. University of Chicago 
11. Princeton University 
12. National University of Singapore (NUS) 
13. Nanyang Technological University (NTU) 
14. École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) 
15. Yale University 
16. Johns Hopkins University 
17. Cornell University 
18. University of Pennsylvania 
19= Australian National University (ANU) 
19= Kings College London KCL) 
21. University of Edinburgh