Texas Tech University, Institute for Forensic Science

Research Classification

Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education's “Very High Research Activity” category.

Texas Tech University is among 131 universities and colleges in the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education's “Very High Research Activity” category. The University also is only one of 94 public institutions listed. The list is updated every three years and universities must maintain specific criteria to achieve designation. Texas Tech first made the list in 2015 and was reaffirmed in 2018.


Texas Tech University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). The organization reaffirmed the University's accreditation for 10 years in 2015.


Under the umbrella of the Texas Tech University System (TTUS), Texas Tech University is one of four component institutions. The others are Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Lubbock, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso, and Angelo State University. The System is governed by the TTUS Board of Regents.


Texas Tech University was created by legislative action in 1923 and has the distinction of being the largest comprehensive higher education institution in the western two-thirds of the state of Texas. The university is the major institution of higher education in a region larger than 46 of the nation's 50 states and is the only campus in Texas that is home to a major university, law school and medical school. Originally named Texas Technological College, the college opened in 1925 with six buildings and an enrollment of 914. Graduate instruction did not begin until 1927 within the school of Liberal Arts. A “Division of Graduate Studies” was established in 1935 and eventually became known as the Graduate School in 1954. By action of the Texas State Legislature, Texas Technological College formally became Texas Tech University on September 1, 1969.


Texas Tech University is located on the South Plains of West Texas in Lubbock (pop. 243,839). As the University was being established, several potential locations, including Floydada, Plainview, Big Spring, and Sweetwater were considered, before Lubbock was selected.