Webometrics is ranking the World universities according their presence on the Web. In the new announced ranking of the world universities by Webometrics on July 31st 2016 Koya University has been ranked as the top university in Kurdistan Region. This great achievement comes after years of dedicating academic community that embraced a pioneering strategic planning of a student centred e-Smart university. This has led to a better valued academic visibility with a global perspective in mind. The road map has been layout in a 10 years strategic planning starting early 2012 and the results are revealing greater success in the horizon.  

On the foothill of the Béjhar mountain lay the green campus of Koya University in the city of Koya, which is 1.0 hr drive to the East of the regional capital Erbil (Arbil, Hewlér) in Kurdistan Region in. Iraq. Its campus has been carefully laid out to embrace the beautiful high mountainous nature. 

The Koya University was established in 2003 and has developed noticeably since then. In 2010, following reforms in Higher Education Koya University was restructured from colleges to faculty systems to enhance the interactions between similar academic fields. Today the University has 4 faculties -Engineering, Sciences and Health, Humanities and Social Sciences, Education and a newly established School of Medicine. The university consist of 23 departments in different fields, such as Petroleum Engineering, Geotechnical Engineering, Clinical Psychology, Social Science and Medical Microbiology as well as Sport Education.

In early 2012 office of Vice President for Scientific affairs introduced a long term strategy for creating an e-Smart all inclusive interactive university (see figure 1) with global impacts. The strategy included the process a firm electronic foundation that has been laid for running Koya University's inclusive communication which is e-enabling all members of its academic community. The created system allowed academic members to experience self-promotion with unique academic values with visible footprint. Koya University have developed and applied what needed for an advanced self-promoting academic portfolio and Continuous Academic Development (CAD) and helped all member to understand and adapt such a strategy. This pioneering strategy put students quality and success at the core of all vision, mission and values of the University. This means teachers can use the system as a means to enhance their academic presence or visibility and also to strengthen their academic relations with their students as well as creating academic footprint with global impact.

Figure 1: The strategy of an e- Smart all inclusive student centred for Koya University

Dr. Dilan M. Rostam the VP for Scientific Affairs at Koya University (Feb 2012-Feb 2016) convinced the university council of his vision for the future of the university and said, “laying the foundation for such a strategy, for which the world leading institutes have worked hard and recorded a global reputation, has educational and teaching implications of putting students at the centre of driving our academic community to success. Education and quality are two inseparable phenomena and at the present time, the purpose of education and teaching is not teaching students some basic numbers and facts, but to create professionals who are capable of having roles in building their community, as well as having problem solving mind with critical thinking. Our success is measurable and ranked. What we have achieved in last 5 years is accessible to a global view. Koya University has a global reliable Ranking Web in 2014 for the first time, which put the university at the 4th best university in Kurdistan Region. Today (July 2016) this University is ranked as the top university indicates that our e-Smart strategy is responding well.”

In an recent interview with Kurdish satellite channel Rudaw Dr Wali M. Hamad the president of Koya University (Feb 2015 - current) emphasised that embracing and supporting the long-term strategy of the Koya University by his office ensuring continuity of a well presented academic community with sense of belonging. He stated “we are working on a national plan to enable the region to enjoy a collective global success. We call all on professional individual to join us in our journey to a communal global success.” (see the wole interview)

However, Dr Haidar Lashkari the Vice President for scientific affairs (Feb 2016 - current) says that our academic community’s attitude towards the future of the university has changed and these recorded success has boost the sense of belonging among our staff.

Koya university pioneered in linking the TQA measures with all stages of its new strategy for a e-Smart university to mark a paperless smart academic community as well as creating measurable successful academic self-promotion. Koya University put forward a plan to make the TQA process an integrated part of academic life. Since 2012, the Directorate of QA at Koya University started an ambitious TQA process or easy scalable self maintained monitoring system for maximum visibility with zero administrative cost. Dr Salah I Yahya the director of QA at Koya University states “the sustainable paperless online system (SPOS) aimed to assure a quality teaching/learning at Koya University and support its wide inclusive strategy.” More information about this system can be found in the published paper in Volume 3, No 1, ARO Journal [4].

However; The Koya University ranking has been measured in several Webometrics Ranking reports and the latest National University Ranking (NUR) which all give us a positive indication of the level of success of the Koya University. When it comes to a viable virtual presence Koya University Ranked as the best University in Iraq globally and that is what the e-Smart strategy stand for.

The world universities are ranked in different classes namely, the Top 100Top 500Top 1000Top 2000 and 2000+ globally. Let us understand the concept of “Ranking Web” and its value to universities ranked in 2000+ universities of the world by Webometrics. All Iraqi universities are included in this category and they are “Ranking Web” only. Koya University’s ambition is to be ranking among Top 2000 universities in next two years.

Koya University in Webometrics

The July 2016 editions of the Webometrics Ranking is now announced which shows a remarkable increase in the Koya University international ranking. Within the past four years, Koya University could jump from the rank (15010) to the rank (5013), see Fig. 2. This amazing (10000) ranking-step was the outcome of Koya University vision and its deep understanding of self-promoting academic community with measurable achievements and global perspective. This inclusive collective awareness with an smart interconnection academic presence has prompted the university global state of present. The July 2016 editions of Webometrics Ranking for Koya university shows in table 1;

Table 1: Koya University in the Webometrics of July 2016

KRG rank

Iraqi rank

World Rank


Presence Rank*

Impact Rank*

Openness Rank*

Excellence Rank*




Koya University





Although Koya University can be classified as a young and small small university with few hundreds of teaching staff and 4000+ of students, with limited resources and support, pioneering in adopting and implementing an e-Smart strategy has put the university in the position to be able to represent the academic success in the Kurdistan region and Iraq. The lessons taking from a public university such as Koya University’s success in a turbulent region with unstable financial situation can be followed by other universities. Koya University has already encouraged other universities in the region and showed a great interest for institutional collaboration and knowledge transfer.  

Koya University Historical Ranking Trends

Fig. 2: Koya University Webometrics ranking (2011 - 2016)

About webometrics.info

The "Webometrics Ranking of World Universities" is an initiative of the Cybermetrics Lab, a research group belonging to the Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC), the largest public research body in Spain.

CSIC is among the first basic research organizations in Europe. The CSIC consisted in 2006 of 126 centers and institutes distributed throughout Spain. CSIC is attached to the Ministry of Education and its main objective is to promote scientific research as to improve the progress of the scientific and technological level of the country which will contribute to increase the welfare of the citizens.

CSIC also plays an important role in the formation of new researchers and technicians in the different aspects of the science and the technology, and credit the value of the adamic presence to the universities in a transparent impartial regional and global ranking system.

For further information on Webometrics Ranking please access...

Koya University ranking in the webometrics.info

The Webometrics ranks about (26000) worldwide universities. In July 2016 version of Webometrics Ranking, Koya University rank is (5103) which is the 8th university in Iraq and 1st university in Kurdistan Region. The Webometrics uses two main criteria with four sub-criteria as explained in the table 2;

Table 2: Criteria used by Webometrics Ranking of July 2016




Koya’s world position



Total number of web pages, including all the rich files (like pdf), according to Google (georeferred at our facilities). Weight: 10%



Now it is going to be named Transparency and it will use the data from the Google Scholar Citations institutional profiles (Raw data is available from Transparent Ranking published in this same portal). Only institutional profiles are chosen. If your university or your faculty members are not included, please promote they set up (voluntarily) their own Google Scholar Citations public profiles with a normalized (official) name of the university in the affiliation and using the INSTITUTIONAL email address. If there is no institutional profile for your university yet, you should contact directly with Google Scholar. Weight: 10%.



The Scimago data (top 10% most cited papers by discipline) for the five year period 2010-2014. New Weight: 30%




We use the maximum indicator value obtained from two independent inlinks information providers (ahrefs & Majestic). For improving reliability we exclude the 20 top linking domains and their corresponding backlinks from the calculation. Weight: 50%.


  • Koya University Rank in KRG, Iraq and the world with respect to all Universities in KRG and Iraq; (https://goo.gl/StM22E)
  • Koya University PRESENCE Rank (Criterion #1) in KRG, Iraq and the world with respect to all Universities in KRG and Iraq; (https://goo.gl/cm6FrD)
  • Koya University OPENNESS Rank (Criterion #2) in KRG, Iraq and the world with respect to all Universities in KRG and Iraq; (https://goo.gl/gttyU1)
  • Koya University EXCELLENCE Rank (Criterion #3) in KRG, Iraq and the world with respect to all Universities in KRG and Iraq; (https://goo.gl/5exhJa)
  • Koya University IMPACT Rank (Criterion #4) in KRG, Iraq and the world with respect to all Universities in KRG and Iraq; (https://goo.gl/wVHmEM)

The table presented in the following links summarise Koya University achievement in a total and individual overview of webometrics.info criteria with respect to Kurdistan region Universities;  https://goo.gl/WIcxX5

Concerning the first criterion of the Webometrics “Presence rank”;

  1. Koya Presence rank is (797)
  2. Koya Presence rank with respect to (290) British Universities, is (42)
  3. Koya Presence rank with respect to (3167) American Universities, is (141)
  4. ​Koya Presence rank with respect to (8992) Asian Universities, is (218)

The Following Figure shows the the Presence Rank of Koya Universities with respect to all Iraqi Universities: (https://goo.gl/zvjKvq)

Webometrics can be a good and reliable source for all universities in Kurdistan Region to measure their global impact and scientific presence. Nevertheless, academic will be able to promote their universities with measurable self-promotion of academic achievements and activities posted to their Teacher Academic Portfolio (TAP) which is accessible to global audience. We encurage our academic community to have an active Google Scholar Accoun (GSA) by using their koya university email account as well a global academic ID via ORCID.org which has become a globla standard for recognising the academic world wide.

The Ministry of Higher Education (MHE) of KRG advised to use the Webometrics ranking to create a healthy academic competition. The academic footprint of individual academics can be used to real value of academic viability with scientific impact. The active TAP can provide immense value for visible academic promotion process at the regional universities. Nevertheless, the MHE uses  the "Presence Rank" of the Webometrics for the National University Ranking in Kurdistan Region (NUR) as its criteria to rank the Kurdistan Universities.

Webometrics vis QS Ranking of Iraqi Universities

The QS Ranking is a commercial survey based inclusion of the universities which means individual universities fill a forms and provide their data to be included in QS database. The aim of such a system is marketing for attracting new students to evaluate their targeting universities before they enrol. Among 69 universities of Iraq only 11 of them are included in QS Ranking of 2016, therefore there are no clear argument for comparison how the Iraqi nationwide universities would performed in a complete listing by QS ranked system.


  1. Ranking Web of Universities; http://www.webometrics.info/en
  2. National University Ranking - KRG; http://www.nur-krg.net
  3. Koya University; http://www.koyauniversity.org
  4. Yahya, S.I. and Rostam, D.M., 2015. A Sustainable Paperless Online System (SPOS) for Engineering Quality in Teaching: Koya University as a Case Study. ARO, The Scientific Journal of Koya University, 3(1), pp.01-13. Retrieved 

By Dilan M. Rostam and Salah I. Yahya
For the office of Vice President for Scientific Affairs, Koya University (vp.office@koyauniversity.org)
(20th Aug 2016)

News Date
Webometrics Ranked Koya University as the Top KRG University