Dartmouth vs. Notre Dame: Which School is Right for You?

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

Two students wearing a backpack while walking in a campus.

Dartmouth vs. Notre Dame: Which School is Right for You?

Choosing the right university can be a daunting task, especially when faced with two excellent choices, such as Dartmouth and Notre Dame.  This comprehensive guide intends to aid students in making an informed decision between Dartmouth vs. Notre Dame.

Both of these universities are recognized for their academic excellence and rich campus culture. However, deciding between the two requires considering a variety of factors, including location, diversity, admission requirements, faculty, class size, campus life, athletics, research, and financial aid, among others.

Location and Campus Comparison

Located in Hanover, New Hampshire, Dartmouth boasts a picturesque Ivy League campus that spans over 260 acres and a rural town environment. Notre Dame, on the other hand, is nestled in South Bend, Indiana, and boasts of expansive 1,265 acres campus in a small city.

While Dartmouth’s small-town charm offers picturesque landscapes and proximity to outdoor recreation opportunities, Notre Dame’s city proximity provides students with access to diverse cultural amenities and social activities.

Additionally, Dartmouth’s location in the Northeast region of the United States allows for easy access to major cities such as Boston and New York City, which are only a few hours away by car or train.

Notre Dame, on the other hand, is located in the Midwest region, which offers students the opportunity to explore cities such as Chicago and Detroit. Both campuses have their unique advantages, and it ultimately depends on the individual’s preferences and interests.

Diversity and Campus Culture

Both universities are committed to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion on campus. Dartmouth has a robust Native American Program which seeks to promote the social, academic, and personal growth of Native American students.

The university also offers a variety of student-led organizations, including cultural and identity groups such as the Latin American, Asian Pacific American, and African American societies. Notre Dame boasts of a vibrant campus culture that fosters community spirit.

The university offers over 1,300 clubs and organizations, including identity-based groups such as the African Students Association, the Asian American Association, and the Native American Student Association.

In addition to these identity-based groups, both universities also have initiatives and programs that promote diversity and inclusion beyond cultural and ethnic identities. For instance, Dartmouth has a Gender-Inclusive Language Task Force that aims to create a more inclusive campus environment for individuals of all gender identities.

Notre Dame has a Diversity and Inclusion Council that works to ensure that the university’s policies and practices are inclusive and equitable for all members of the community. Both universities also offer resources and support for students with disabilities, including accessible housing and accommodations for academic and extracurricular activities.

Dartmouth vs. Notre Dame: Admission Requirements and Acceptance Rates

Dartmouth and Notre Dame have stringent admission requirements for applicants. Dartmouth requires standardized test scores, essays, transcripts, and recommendations, among other things. Notre Dame also considers standardized test scores, essays, transcripts, and recommendations from all applicants.

The two universities have a competitive acceptance rate, with Dartmouth accepting only 7.9% of its applicants and Notre Dame 18.7% of its applicants. Students seeking admission to either university must have a strong academic background and extracurricular activities to increase their chances of acceptance.

It is important to note that both Dartmouth and Notre Dame also consider other factors beyond academic achievements and extracurricular activities. For instance, Dartmouth values diversity and inclusivity and, therefore, considers an applicant’s background, experiences, and perspectives.

Similarly, Notre Dame places a strong emphasis on character and values and looks for applicants who demonstrate a commitment to service and leadership. Therefore, students who are interested in applying to these universities should not only focus on their academic and extracurricular achievements but also highlight their unique qualities and values in their application.

Academic Programs and Majors Offered

A female student smiling at the camera.

Dartmouth is primarily known for its undergraduate liberal arts program and research opportunities. The university offers 57 majors in diverse fields, such as engineering, humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences.

Notre Dame, on the other hand, offers more than 75 undergraduate majors and enrolls students in programs within four colleges and six schools. The university prides itself on its financial and accounting programs, as well as its research endeavors.

In addition to its undergraduate programs, Dartmouth also offers graduate programs in various fields, such as business, engineering, and medicine. The Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth is one of the top-ranked business schools in the country, offering MBA and executive education programs.

Notre Dame also offers graduate programs in fields such as law, engineering, and theology. The university’s law school is particularly well-regarded, consistently ranking in the top 25 law schools in the country.

Notre Dame also has a strong commitment to undergraduate research, with opportunities for students to work alongside faculty members on cutting-edge research projects.

Dartmouth vs. Notre Dame: Faculty and Class Size Comparison

Both universities employ renowned faculty members who are committed to fostering academic excellence. Dartmouth’s faculty-student ratio stands at 1:7, allowing for close interaction between professors and students.

Notre Dame boasts of a low student-to-faculty ratio of 10:1, allowing for personalized academic guidance from faculty members. Both universities strive to provide students with individual attention and support to help them succeed in their academic pursuits.

In addition to their commitment to academic excellence, both universities also prioritize research and innovation. Dartmouth is home to several research centers and institutes, including the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice and the Thayer School of Engineering.

Notre Dame has a strong focus on interdisciplinary research, with centers such as the Notre Dame Environmental Change Initiative and the Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development.

Furthermore, both universities offer a wide range of academic programs and majors to cater to diverse student interests. Dartmouth has over 50 majors and minors across various fields, including engineering, social sciences, and humanities. Notre Dame offers over 75 majors, ranging from business and economics to theology and philosophy.

Student Life and Extracurricular Activities

Dartmouth and Notre Dame pride themselves on a vibrant campus culture that provides students with diverse extracurricular activities and social events. Dartmouth has over 300 student-run organizations, including academic groups, sports teams, and service clubs.

Notre Dame also has a rich campus life, with over 400 clubs and organizations. The university’s athletic program is particularly notable, with 26 varsity sports teams competing in NCAA Division I.

Aside from the numerous clubs and organizations, both Dartmouth and Notre Dame offer a variety of cultural events and performances throughout the year.

Dartmouth’s Hopkins Center for the Arts hosts over 100 events annually, including concerts, theater productions, and dance performances. Notre Dame’s DeBartolo Performing Arts Center features a wide range of performances, from classical music to contemporary dance.

Additionally, both universities prioritize community service and offer opportunities for students to get involved in service projects. Dartmouth’s Tucker Foundation coordinates service trips during school breaks and partners with local organizations for ongoing service projects.

Notre Dame’s Center for Social Concerns offers service-learning courses and connects students with local and global service opportunities.

Dartmouth vs. Notre Dame: Career Services and Opportunities

Both universities are committed to providing students with career services and opportunities to prepare them for the job market. Dartmouth has a Career Services office that offers students career counseling, job search strategies, and assistance with resumes and cover letters.

The university also has a robust alumni network that provides students with access to internships, job opportunities, and mentorship. Notre Dame offers students similar career services and has an extensive alumni network that helps students secure job opportunities after graduation.

Group of students talking in a room.

In addition to the career services offered by both universities, Dartmouth and Notre Dame also provide students with various opportunities to gain practical experience in their chosen fields.

Dartmouth offers a variety of experiential learning programs, such as internships, research opportunities, and off-campus study programs that allow students to apply their classroom knowledge in real-world settings.

Similarly, Notre Dame offers students opportunities to participate in internships, research projects, and service-learning programs that provide hands-on experience and help students build their resumes. These practical experiences prepare students for the job market and help them develop valuable skills and networks that will benefit them throughout their careers.

Cost of Attendance and Financial Aid Comparison

Both Dartmouth and Notre Dame are private universities that offer a similar cost of attendance. The cost of tuition, room, and board at Dartmouth is approximately $77,000 annually, while Notre Dame costs approximately $76,000 annually.

However, both universities offer substantial financial aid to their students. Dartmouth meets the full financial need of admitted students with a combination of grants and scholarships. Notre Dame also offers financial to students through grants, scholarships, and work-study programs.

Students should determine the cost of attendance and financial aid opportunities when deciding which university to pick.

It is important to note that the cost of attendance at both universities may vary depending on the student’s individual circumstances. For example, students who live off-campus or have additional expenses may have a higher cost of attendance.

Additionally, both universities offer merit-based scholarships to high-achieving students, which can further reduce the cost of attendance.

Furthermore, students should also consider the long-term financial benefits of attending each university. Both Dartmouth and Notre Dame have strong alumni networks and high job placement rates, which can lead to higher earning potential after graduation.

Students should weigh the cost of attendance and financial aid opportunities against the potential return on investment in their future careers.

Dartmouth vs. Notre Dame: Alumni Network and Career Success

Dartmouth and Notre Dame’s alumni networks are extensive and provide students with career opportunities and professional networks. Dartmouth’s notable alumni include Dr. Seuss, Robert Frost, and Fred Rogers.

Notre Dame’s alumni include over 125 in Congress, two White House Chief of Staff appointees, and Supreme Court Justice John Roberts. The success of these alumni bears testimony to the effectiveness of the education at Dartmouth and Notre Dame.

Furthermore, both Dartmouth and Notre Dame offer robust career services to their students and alumni. These services include career counseling, job search assistance, and networking events. Dartmouth’s Center for Professional Development provides students with access to alumni mentors and hosts career fairs and workshops.

Notre Dame’s Career Center offers similar resources, including career advising and job and internship postings. With the support of these career services and alumni networks, graduates of Dartmouth and Notre Dame are well-equipped to achieve success in their chosen fields.

Dartmouth vs. Notre Dame: Campus Safety

Both universities have safety departments that maintain campus security and provide students with safety resources. Dartmouth has a live web safety map that students can use to avoid hazardous areas. The university also offers various safety programs, including self-defense courses and emergency response training.

Notre Dame offers similar safety resources, including a safety app and emergency call boxes located around campus. The university has also implemented various programs promoting safety on campus.

Group of students smiling at the camera.

In addition to the safety resources provided by the universities, both Dartmouth and Notre Dame have established partnerships with local law enforcement agencies to enhance campus safety. These partnerships include regular patrols by local police officers and joint training exercises with campus security personnel.

Furthermore, both universities have implemented strict policies and procedures to prevent and respond to incidents of sexual assault and harassment. Dartmouth has a confidential reporting system for survivors of sexual violence and offers support services such as counseling and medical care.

Notre Dame has a dedicated Title IX office that investigates reports of sexual misconduct and provides resources for survivors.

Athletics Programs Comparison

Dartmouth and Notre Dame both have competitive athletics programs that provide students with an opportunity to compete in NCAA Division I competitions. Dartmouth fields 34 teams in 24 sports, including skiing and equestrian sports.

Notre Dame boasts of 26 varsity sports teams, with notable programs in basketball and football. Both universities have state-of-the-art sports facilities that offer students an opportunity to develop their athletic prowess.

However, there are some differences between the two universities’ athletics programs. Dartmouth strongly focuses on individual sports, such as cross country and track and field, while Notre Dame emphasizes team sports, like soccer and lacrosse.

Additionally, Dartmouth has a long-standing tradition of excellence in winter sports, with its skiing program consistently ranked among the top in the nation. On the other hand, Notre Dame’s football program is one of the most storied in college sports history, with a large and passionate fan base.

Dartmouth vs. Notre Dame: Research Opportunities

Both universities have a strong research culture that provides students with opportunities to engage in cutting-edge research in various fields. Dartmouth is a member of the Ivy League research community, providing students with exposure to top-notch research projects.

Notre Dame‘s research programs are supported by an annual research investment of over $190 million, providing students with diverse and innovative research opportunities.

At Dartmouth, students have the opportunity to participate in the Undergraduate Research Symposium, where they can showcase their research projects to the community. The school’s Thayer School of Engineering also offers a unique program called the Engineering Sciences Scholars Program, which provides students with research opportunities in engineering and applied sciences.

Dartmouth vs. Notre Dame: Study Abroad Programs

Both Dartmouth and Notre Dame have a range of study-abroad programs that provide students with exposure to diverse cultures and academic environments. Dartmouth offers over 40 study-abroad opportunities in over 20 countries, while Notre Dame has over 60 programs in over 30 countries.

The universities’ study abroad programs are designed to provide students with a global perspective to complement their academic pursuits.

Additionally, both universities offer various scholarships and financial aid options to support students who wish to participate in study abroad programs.

These programs provide students with the opportunity to learn about different cultures and languages and gain valuable skills such as adaptability, independence, and intercultural communication. Students who participate in study abroad programs often report that it was a life-changing experience that helped them grow both personally and academically.

Student Support Services at Both Universities

Dartmouth and Notre Dame offer various support services to students to enhance their academic experience. Dartmouth’s Academic Skills Center provides students with resources such as writing tutoring, test-taking workshops, and time management coaching.

Group of students studying together in the library.

Notre Dame’s First Year of Studies offers students access to academic advisors, peer mentors, and writing and math centers. Both universities also have counseling and wellness centers providing students with mental health support and physical wellness resources.

In addition to academic support, both universities offer a range of extracurricular activities to help students develop their interests and skills outside of the classroom.

Dartmouth has over 200 student organizations, including clubs for community service, sports, and the arts. Notre Dame has a variety of clubs and organizations, including academic clubs, cultural groups, and service organizations.

Furthermore, both universities have programs supporting students from diverse backgrounds. Dartmouth’s Office of Pluralism and Leadership provides resources and programming to support students from underrepresented groups.

Notre Dame’s Multicultural Student Programs and Services offers support and resources to students of color, LGBTQ+ students, and first-generation college students.

Dartmouth vs. Notre Dame: Social Life on Campus

Dartmouth and Notre Dame have a rich social life on campus, providing students with opportunities to socialize and build friendships. Dartmouth has a thriving Greek life, with over 50% of students participating in fraternities and sororities.

The university also has a vibrant arts scene, including music, theater, and dance performances. Notre Dame has a social scene based around football and other athletic events. The university also hosts various cultural and social events, such as the International Taste of South Bend and Fun Fest.

Aside from Greek life and the arts, Dartmouth also offers a variety of clubs and organizations for students to get involved in. These range from academic clubs, such as the Dartmouth Finance Society, to recreational clubs, such as the Dartmouth Outing Club. These clubs allow students to meet like-minded individuals and pursue their interests outside of the classroom.

At Notre Dame, students can also participate in service and volunteer opportunities through the Center for Social Concerns. The university has a strong commitment to community service, and students can get involved in programs such as the Urban Plunge, where they spend a weekend in a nearby city volunteering and learning about social justice issues.

Housing Options Available for Students

Dartmouth and Notre Dame both offer students a range of housing options, including traditional dorms, themed housing, and independent living. Dartmouth’s housing systems are designed to promote community building and include residential communities, such as the Sustainable Living Center.

Notre Dame has residence halls that house students of different years and interests, including the First Year of Studies housing program. The university also provides off-campus housing options for upperclassmen.

Additionally, both universities have programs in place to assist students in finding suitable housing options. Dartmouth’s Off-Campus Housing Office provides resources and support for students seeking off-campus housing, including a database of available properties and assistance with lease agreements.

Notre Dame’s Off-Campus Housing Services offers a similar service, as well as information on roommate matching and transportation options for students living off-campus.

Dartmouth vs. Notre Dame: Internship Opportunities

Both Dartmouth and Notre Dame provide their students with opportunities for internships and experiential learning, giving them a chance to gain workplace experience. Dartmouth has a career services office that works to link students with unique internships and experiential learning opportunities.

Notre Dame’s Career Center offers students opportunities to network with alumni and potential employers and provides internship and job search assistance.

In addition to the career services offered by Dartmouth and Notre Dame, many companies and organizations also offer internships to college students. These internships can provide valuable experience and connections in a specific industry or field. Some companies even offer paid internships, which can help offset the cost of tuition and living expenses.

Internships can also be a great way to explore potential career paths and gain insight into different industries. By working in a professional setting, students can learn about the day-to-day responsibilities of a particular job and determine if it’s a good fit for their skills and interests.

Additionally, internships can help students build their resumes and stand out to potential employers after graduation.

Graduate School Prospects after Attending Either University

Dartmouth and Notre Dame’s academic excellence prepares graduates for admission into prestigious graduate schools. Dartmouth offers over 20 graduate programs, with notable research programs in engineering, business, and health sciences.

Notre Dame has several graduate programs, including Mendoza, a top-ranked MBA program. Notre Dame also has a robust law school and Ph.D. programs in various disciplines.

Final Verdict: Which University is the Best Fit for You?

View of a student using her laptop while writing.

Ultimately, whether Dartmouth or Notre Dame is the best fit for a particular student depends on individual preferences, goals, and culture. Both universities offer an exceptional education, excellent faculty, and extensive resources for student’s personal and academic growth.

Students should consider factors such as location, campus culture, academic programs, faculty, cost of attendance, extracurricular activities, and career services to make an informed decision.

Regardless of which university a student chooses, they can trust that they will receive a top-notch education, meet lifelong friends, and benefit from an extensive alumni network.


Are you feeling overwhelmed by the college admission process? Look no further! AdmissionSight is here to guide you toward success. With our specialized college admission consultation service, we offer personalized assistance tailored to your unique goals and aspirations.

Our experienced consultants will provide expert advice on crafting a standout application, selecting the right colleges, and navigating the complex admissions world. Don’t let stress hold you back—let AdmissionSight be your trusted partner on your journey to higher education. Contact us today to take the first step toward a brighter future.

College Admissions

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.