right arrow
Informational Message Stay on top of the information you need to navigate the admissions process amid the COVID-19 pandemic. We've got articles, videos and forum discussions that provide answers to all of your test prep, admissions and college search questions.   Visit our COVID-19 resource page.

Introducing Kai!
Your College Confidential guide bot.


Kai can provide tips and support as you research and apply to colleges, and explore majors and careers.





Chat with Kai
here, 24/7!


or Skip Forever

IMPORTANT NEWS: CC Forums are now in read-only mode as the team is working on the transition to a new, modern forum platform with enhanced features. We anticipate full service on the site to return by Friday, Nov. 27 at 2:00pm ET. Read more about this here!

Ivy Leagues for Certain Majors

trienebutdienetrienebutdiene 2 replies11 threads New Member
Hey guys! Out of the ivy leagues, how would you rank them for chemistry and organic chemistry for undergrads? Also, how would you rank them for engineering and computer science?
10 replies
· Reply · Share

Replies to: Ivy Leagues for Certain Majors

  • tk21769tk21769 10710 replies27 threads Senior Member
    You're not likely to get a valid sample of informed opinions from CC posters familiar with all these programs at all 8 Ivies.

    Suggestion: look up their graduate program rankings in these fields.
    USNWR, the NRC, T.H.E., and others do department/program rankings ... for whatever they're worth (which may not be much, especially for undergrads). You may see more variation among professors within the same college as you do in overall program quality between any two Ivies that have the program you want.
    · Reply · Share
  • merc81merc81 12312 replies211 threads Senior Member
    edited June 2019
    With respect to engineering programs, USN ranks Cornell, Princeton and Columbia highest among the Ivies in their category, at 9th, 12th and 18th, respectively. Nonetheless, for students with less specialized early interests, the programs at even a "lower" ranked school such as Dartmouth (48th) may offer sufficient appeal.

    https://www.usnews.com/best-colleges/rankings/engineering-doctorate
    edited June 2019
    · Reply · Share
  • RiversiderRiversider 934 replies111 threads Senior Member
    edited June 2019
    Do not forget that undergrad is a learning, evolving and grooming process not limited to your chemistry courses and there is also good chance there of you changing majors as well. Go for bigger picture.
    edited June 2019
    · Reply · Share
  • merc81merc81 12312 replies211 threads Senior Member
    edited June 2019
    I'd recommend you generally disregard graduate department rankings for the purpose of evaluating undergraduate programs.
    edited June 2019
    · Reply · Share
  • monydadmonydad 8074 replies161 threads Senior Member
    edited June 2019
    Better graduate departments attract smarter graduate students . Those graduate students will be your TAs, at basically all the schools under discussion. You want a dumb TA, go ahead disregard the grad rankings.

    Similarly, they attract more accomplished Profs, who can add the occasional tidbits from their research to jazz things up. It feels cool to be in a class taught by a Nobel Prize winner, or a future one, whether or not he/she actually teaches any better.

    Meanwhile there are really no rankings for undergrad departments available to be substituted AFAIK.
    OP wants rankings, these are the rankings that exist. Accept "trickle down theory" or else there is no answer.
    edited June 2019
    · Reply · Share
  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus 85298 replies761 threads Senior Member
    monydad wrote:
    OP wants rankings, these are the rankings that exist. Accept "trickle down theory" or else there is no answer.

    Or the OP can build his/her own rankings of undergraduate departments, probably needing the help of someone knowledgeable in the field, using such criteria as:

    * What courses are offered and how frequently.
    * Course content, depth, rigor, etc. as discerned from the syllabi.
    * Course formats.
    * Whether there are entry to (or progression in) major restrictions (beyond the typical baseline of 2.0 GPA and satisfactory academic progress), and how difficult they are to fulfill.
    * Whether any courses of interest are frequently full or overenrolled.
    * How easy or difficult using other opportunities (undergraduate research, co-op jobs, etc.) and the quality of such are.
    * How the department's students are seen by employers and graduate programs in the field.
    · Reply · Share
  • lookingforwardlookingforward 36064 replies406 threads Senior Member
    OP, you keep asking general questions. What research are you doing on your own? To get into a tippy top, you need to be the sort who can dig for answers in what a college says and shows and other legit resources. Not ask a forum what they know. That's 'leaning back.'

    Get a Fiske Guide to Colleges, learn more about what it really takes to get an admit. Look at their programs, read their blogs. Then you can start to self assess. Not just the opinions of others, strangers.

    And what year are you in hs? What stats, rigor and ECs?
    · Reply · Share
  • 1NJParent1NJParent 2592 replies37 threads Senior Member
    I agree with ucbalumnus and lookingforward that you need to do your own assessment, everyone's situation is different. What are you looking for in a college? What are the most important factors to you? For example, for my S, we determined that rigorous academic offerings and outcomes in his chosen field are the two most important factors. The other ones are secondary and tertiary, and only used to break ties. Because he was sure of his interest in CS, we never looked into chemistry. In CS, we would have ranked Cornell and Princeton at the top among the Ivy League, for him. We also looked into the engineering schools within these two universities because of their CS associations. We found Princeton has its strength in financial engineering (not a traditional engineering discipline, but relevant to CS) and Cornell stronger in more traditional engineering disciplines. My S, BTW, didn't go to either one of them (and didn't even apply to one of them). He chose a non-Ivy school instead. But that's another story.
    · Reply · Share
  • monydadmonydad 8074 replies161 threads Senior Member
    edited June 2019
    FWIW in #6 above, to clarify, I meant only as far as "canned" rankings are concerned. I do agree with @ucbalumnus that everyone should make their own rankings (to the extent that data is available and not unreasonably time consuming to gather and evaluate). They should do it based on what they care about, which will probably transcend rankings of particular departments.
    edited June 2019
    · Reply · Share
This discussion has been closed.

Recent Activity