Brown University vs Harvey Mudd: Which Is the Better Choice?

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

Two students talking on the stairs.

Brown University vs Harvey Mudd: Which Is the Better Choice?

Choosing the right college or university is one of the most significant decisions one can make in their academic journey. Two popular choices among students are Brown University and Harvey Mudd College. It can be challenging to decide which of these excellent institutions is the better choice. In this comprehensive article, we will compare Brown University vs Harvey Mudd College across several dimensions to help you make an informed choice.

Academic Programs and Curriculum: What Sets Brown University vs Harvey Mudd Apart?

Brown University has a diverse array of academic programs and is well known for its undergraduate liberal arts education. It offers more than 70 concentrations in a wide range of fields, including Computer Science, History, and Physics. Students can also create their own custom majors. The university’s open curriculum allows students to choose courses that align with their interests and academic goals.

In contrast, Harvey Mudd College focuses on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields. The college offers degrees in Computer Science, Engineering, Mathematics, and Physics, among others. The college’s curriculum is rigorous and blends theoretical concepts with hands-on learning. It aims to equip students with the skills necessary to solve real-world problems.

Unknown person writing on a board full of Math concepts.

Another distinguishing feature of Brown University is its commitment to interdisciplinary studies. The university encourages students to explore multiple fields of study and offers several interdisciplinary programs, such as the Program in Liberal Medical Education and the Brown-RISD Dual Degree Program. These programs allow students to combine their interests in different fields and gain a broader perspective on complex issues.

On the other hand, Harvey Mudd College has a strong emphasis on research and innovation. The college provides numerous opportunities for students to engage in research projects and collaborate with faculty members.

The college also has several research centers, such as the Harvey Mudd College Clinic Program, which partners with industry sponsors to solve real-world problems. These initiatives help students develop critical thinking skills and prepare them for careers in cutting-edge fields.

Campus Culture: A Look at Student Life and Social Scene at Brown University vs Harvey Mudd

Brown University is located in Providence, Rhode Island, a vibrant city that offers various co-curricular and extracurricular activities. The student body at Brown is diverse, with a mix of cultures, backgrounds, and perspectives. The university has more than 500 student organizations catering to various interests and hobbies. Brown’s campus is known for LGBTQ+ inclusivity and activism.

Harvey Mudd College has a smaller student body, with most students focusing on their academic pursuits. The college is situated in Claremont, California, a small town with a tight-knit community. Student life at Harvey Mudd is centered around academics, with students collaborating on scientific research and participating in clubs like robotics and rocketry.

Despite the focus on academics, Harvey Mudd College also offers a vibrant social scene. The college hosts various events throughout the year, including dances, concerts, and movie nights. Students can also participate in intramural sports and outdoor activities like hiking and camping. The college’s location in Southern California also provides easy access to nearby attractions like Disneyland and the beach.

At Brown University, students not only have access to a diverse range of student organizations but also a thriving arts scene. The university has a renowned theater program, with multiple productions staged each year. Brown also has a student-run radio station and newspaper, providing opportunities for students interested in media and journalism. Additionally, the university hosts various cultural events and festivals, celebrating the diversity of its student body.

Admissions Criteria: Breaking Down the Requirements for Brown University vs Harvey Mudd

Brown University is highly selective, admitting only 5% of applicants. The university evaluates applicants based on their academic track record, extracurricular activities, and certain personality traits. The university’s admissions committee also considers essays, interviews, and recommendation letters. Brown requires applicants to submit either SAT or ACT test scores.

Harvey Mudd College is even more selective, admitting only 10% of applicants. The college focuses primarily on academic achievement, ranking in the top 10% of their high school class, and a strong foundation in mathematics and science. The college requires applicants to submit either SAT or ACT test scores, as well as SAT subject tests in mathematics and one of the sciences.

In addition to academic and extracurricular achievements, Brown University also values diversity and inclusivity in its applicant pool. The university actively seeks out students from underrepresented backgrounds and encourages applicants to share their unique perspectives and experiences in their application materials.

At Harvey Mudd College, the admissions committee also takes into account an applicant’s passion for learning and intellectual curiosity. The college looks for students who are eager to explore new ideas and challenge themselves academically, as well as those who have demonstrated leadership and community involvement.

Faculty Profiles: A Comparison of the Teaching Staff at Brown University and Harvey Mudd

Brown University has a faculty-student ratio of 6:1, meaning students have access to their professors frequently. Brown’s faculty members are well accomplished in their respective fields, with many holding advanced degrees and conducting groundbreaking research. They are also renowned for their teaching skills, with several of them receiving awards for their teaching prowess.

Harvey Mudd College has an even lower faculty-student ratio of 1:8, which means that students can avail of individualized attention from faculty members. The professors at Harvey Mudd are experts in their fields and are committed to providing an intellectually stimulating environment. They are also known for their availability to students and their passion for teaching.

Despite the differences in faculty-student ratios, both Brown University and Harvey Mudd College have a diverse faculty body that represents a wide range of backgrounds and experiences.

Brown University has a faculty that is 44% female and 22% underrepresented minorities, while Harvey Mudd College has a faculty that is 38% female and 20% underrepresented minorities. Both institutions prioritize diversity and inclusivity in their hiring practices, which contributes to a rich and dynamic learning environment for students.

Research Opportunities: Exploring the Research Facilities and Resources Available at Brown University and Harvey Mudd

Brown University has a robust research infrastructure, with numerous research centers and institutes supporting interdisciplinary research. Students can participate in research across different disciplines, including health sciences, environmental studies, and humanities. Brown also has partnerships with several research institutions, providing students with access to international research opportunities.

Harvey Mudd College has a strong focus on undergraduate research and provides ample opportunities for students to engage in hands-on research activities. The college boasts several research centers, including the Keck science center, which houses state-of-the-art research equipment. Students can collaborate with faculty members and undertake research in cutting-edge fields like nanotechnology and robotics.

Engineering students working together on a lab.

In addition to the research centers and institutes, Brown University also has a dedicated Office of Research Development that provides support to faculty and students in securing funding for research projects. The office offers workshops and training sessions on grant writing and research proposal development, helping students to develop their research skills and secure funding for their projects.

At Harvey Mudd College, students can also participate in research projects through the college’s summer research program. The program provides students with stipends and housing to work on research projects with faculty members during the summer months. This program allows students to gain valuable research experience and make significant contributions to their fields of study.

Cost of Attendance: A Financial Comparison of Brown University and Harvey Mudd

Attending Brown University can be quite costly. The annual tuition fee for the academic year 2021-22 is $60,696, and the total cost of attendance, including room, board, and other associated expenses, is approximately $80,000. Brown offers financial aid to students with demonstrated needs, and approximately 50% of undergraduate students receive some form of financial aid.

Harvey Mudd College has a similar tuition fee structure, with an annual tuition fee of $60,749 for the academic year 2021-22. The total cost of attendance, including room, board, and other expenses, is approximately $80,000. The college also offers financial aid to students, and approximately 50% of students receive some form of financial assistance.

However, it is important to note that the cost of attendance is not the only factor to consider when comparing these two institutions. Brown University is an Ivy League school with a larger student body and a wider range of academic programs, while Harvey Mudd College is a smaller, highly selective liberal arts college with a focus on STEM fields. Additionally, the location and campus culture of each institution may also play a role in a student’s decision-making process.

Career Preparation Resources: How Brown University and Harvey Mudd Prepare Students for Success in the Job Market

Brown University has a comprehensive career services center that helps students with internships, job placements, and graduate school applications. The center provides students with resources like resume critiques, mock interviews, and networking opportunities. Brown also has a robust alumni network that often leads to job placements and career opportunities.

Harvey Mudd College has a similarly functional career services center that prepares students for success in the job market. The center offers specialized career counseling for STEM fields and assists students with networking, job applications, and internships. Harvey Mudd’s career services center boasts of a high job placement rate, with 93% of graduates securing employment within six months of graduation.

Both Brown University and Harvey Mudd College also offer a variety of career-related workshops and events throughout the year. These events range from industry-specific panels to career fairs, where students can meet with potential employers and learn about different career paths. Additionally, both universities have partnerships with companies and organizations that offer internships and job opportunities exclusively to their students.

Location Matters: Comparing the Surrounding Areas of Brown University and Harvey Mudd

Brown University is located in Providence, Rhode Island, a vibrant city with a rich history. The city offers various recreational activities, excellent food, and local cultural events. Providence is also home to several museums and cultural institutions, providing students with avenues for exploration and community engagement.

Harvey Mudd College is located in Claremont, California, a small town, and a safe, welcoming community. Claremont has a vibrant downtown area, with several local eateries and shops. The town also offers numerous recreational activities, including hiking trails and parks.

Despite the differences in location, both Brown University and Harvey Mudd College offer unique opportunities for their students. Brown University’s location in Providence allows students to engage with the local community and explore the city’s rich history and culture. On the other hand, Harvey Mudd College’s location in Claremont provides students with a tight-knit community and access to outdoor recreational activities. Ultimately, the location of a university can greatly impact a student’s college experience, and it’s important to consider the surrounding area when making a decision on where to attend.

Student-to-Faculty Ratio: Analyzing the Size of Classes at Brown University and Harvey Mudd

Brown University has an average class size of 19 students per class, providing students with ample opportunities for interaction with their peers and professors. The university’s low student-to-faculty ratio ensures that students have access to their professors outside of class and can build meaningful relationships with them.

Harvey Mudd College has an even lower average class size of 14, which means that students receive individualized attention from faculty members. The small class sizes also foster a sense of community among students, who collaborate on various academic projects and research activities.

A student paying attention to lecture in classroom.

Furthermore, both Brown University and Harvey Mudd College offer small seminar-style classes, which allow for in-depth discussions and debates among students and faculty members. These classes provide students with the opportunity to delve deeper into their areas of interest and receive personalized feedback on their work. Additionally, the small class sizes at both universities create a more intimate learning environment, where students can form close relationships with their peers and professors, leading to a more fulfilling college experience.

Athletics Programs: Comparing the Athletic Teams at Brown University and Harvey Mudd

Brown University has a strong athletics program, with 32 Division I varsity teams. The university has a comprehensive athletics program covering sports like basketball, football, and soccer. Brown’s gym facility, the Nelson Fitness Center, offers students access to fitness machines, free weights, and fitness classes.

Harvey Mudd College does not offer Division I athletics programs, but it has a strong emphasis on intramural sports. The college has a variety of intramural sports, including basketball, flag football, and ultimate frisbee. Harvey Mudd students can also participate in fitness classes and outdoor adventure activities.

Despite not having Division I athletics programs, Harvey Mudd College has a strong tradition of athletic excellence. The college’s intramural sports teams have won numerous championships and awards over the years. Additionally, Harvey Mudd students have the opportunity to participate in club sports, such as rugby, volleyball, and fencing.

Both Brown University and Harvey Mudd College prioritize the health and well-being of their student-athletes. Both universities have athletic trainers and medical staff available to provide care and support to their athletes. Brown University also has a sports medicine program that offers specialized care and rehabilitation services to injured athletes.

Diversity on Campus: Examining the Diversity Initiatives at Brown University vs Harvey Mudd

Brown University has a diverse student body, with undergraduate students hailing from all 50 states and over 100 countries. The university has several initiatives aimed at fostering an inclusive campus community and promoting diversity. Brown’s Third World Center and the First-Generation College and Low-Income Student Center are some of the resources available for students.

Harvey Mudd College is committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive learning community. The college has several diversity initiatives, including affinity groups, mentorship programs, and cultural events. Harvey Mudd’s Office of Institutional Diversity offers resources and support for students from underrepresented backgrounds.

Group of students working together and talking.

In addition to these initiatives, Brown University also has a Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan, which outlines specific goals and strategies for promoting diversity and inclusion on campus. The plan includes initiatives such as increasing the diversity of faculty and staff, expanding support for first-generation and low-income students, and creating a more inclusive curriculum.

Similarly, Harvey Mudd College has a Diversity Strategic Plan, which outlines the college’s commitment to diversity and inclusion. The plan includes initiatives such as increasing the diversity of the student body, faculty, and staff, creating a more inclusive campus climate, and promoting cultural competency among students and staff.


Choosing between Brown University vs Harvey Mudd College can be a difficult decision. Both institutions offer excellent academic programs, top-notch campus amenities and resources, diverse student bodies, and strong career preparation resources.

Ultimately, the choice between Brown University vs Harvey Mudd College depends on a student’s academic and personal goals, interests, and resources. Hopefully, the comprehensive comparison in this article has provided the necessary information to help you make an informed decision about which institution is the better choice for you.

Want to learn more about getting into College? You’ve come to the right place. At AdmissionSight, we have over 10 years of experience guiding students through the competitive admissions process.

AdmissionSight can help you put your best foot forward when applying to college this fall. Contact us today for more information on our services.



Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sign up now to receive insights on
how to navigate the college admissions process.