Brown University vs. University of Chicago

<p>All of the college decisions are out (at least from all the colleges I?ve applied to) and I?m having a tough time selecting a college. Out of all the colleges I have been accepted at, the two colleges that I?m most interested in are Brown University and the University of Chicago. I?m also leaving Cornell University open for consideration, but only if someone can tell me something fantastic about Cornell.</p>

<p>I?m an international student from India hoping to study Philosophy with a little bit of Physics at college. I?m an average student (at least I will be at any of these colleges) with quite a strong interest in academics. I?m not very much ?into? partying, though an odd party every few weeks or so is always fun, It?s more important to me that I make good friends. I?d like to go somewhere with a very friendly and open minded student body with a good intellectual atmosphere.</p>

<p>The idea of a smaller college is more appealing for me ? this is why I?m going to turn down the large state universities I got accepted at (and maybe should turn down Cornell for the very same reason?) I would like a nice community-like atmosphere which includes not only the students, but advisors and professors as well. It?s very important to me that I foster good personal relationships with my advisors and maybe the professors too (but the advisors are more important). </p>

<p>From the beginning of the application process, I felt a good connection with both Brown and Chicago. They?re both peculiar universities which don?t tend to attract everyone. They have something quirky about them which I can?t quite put my finger on ? but I know I?m intrigued.
In the end it is probably going to come down to the difference between a demanding core curriculum and a complete lack thereof. Although my gut instinct tells me to go with Brown and its open curriculum, I can?t help but wonder if Chicago?s expansive core would do me a whole lot of good?</p>

<p>Any advice is appreciated. Thank you very much.</p>

<p>Bump... any takers?</p>

<p>That's a tough one. It sounds like both schools (both of which I seriously considered applying to myself) would fit you in their own ways. Your interests in Physics and Philosophy initally led me to want to recommend Chicago over Brown... but, socially, Brown has always struck as me as more 'community-like' (but maybe those are stereotypes speaking). Chicago, certainly, has the reputation for more rigorous academics.</p>

<p>To be honest, I think either school would suit you well; otherwise, you wouldn't have applied, right? No one online can really tell you what to do. Go with your gut. Take advantage of resources for admitted students in talking to current students, professors, etc. I wish I could help!</p>

<p>Chicago is quirky, Brown much more mainstream. At Chicago you'll work much harder and party less. Brown is unbeatable for giving you the opportunity to take a wide range of subjects. Personally, I'd never go to Chicago but think if you're an economics major it's worth considering.</p>

<p>I'd go to Brown for the academics "and" fun.</p>

<p>If you plan on working outside the US after graduation (I assume this since you said you're from India), and place a lot of importance on international prestige, you might have to re-examine your view on Cornell. Among the three, Cornell is more well-known, followed by Chicago. Brown is highly regarded in the US but not as well-known outside. All of them are great schools, so you can't really go wrong.</p>

<p>Well, in terms of grad school prep, Chicago will serve you best. There was a report about 11 years ago, linked to somewhere on the Chicago board here, wherein it was concluded that the average Chicago undergraduate student is more stressed, and more worked than their grad counterparts. Moreover, you can find countless sources speaking of the academic rigor there, which dramatically exceeds anything found at Brown. It is also, should this be a concern of yours, more highly ranked. And, should you ever change your mind and want to study something like Economics, not even Harvard can touch Chicago.</p>

<p>I like Brown the best...(even though Chicago is one of my top choices...but that's just because i might want to major in economics) and philosophy at Brown is really highly regarded (from what I've heard)</p>

<p>Wow what complete polar opposites in terms of academics! Brown has an extremely unrestricted free-for-all curriculum requirements, while UChicago has a Core Curriculum, a set of required courses that ALL students have to take to graduate. Have you considered this fact?</p>


I actually plan on going to grad school (in the US) after college.</p>


Yes, I realize this. I mentioned it in my original post. The thing is, I don't know whether or not the huge core is a good thing.</p>


Oddly enough, the thing is that if I change my mind and want to study something like Economics, It'll be far easier at Brown than Chicago because of the open curriculum at Brown vs. the enormous core at Chicago.</p>

<p>As far as the rankings go I thought they were pretty much the same as far as undergrad is concerned. International prestige generally comes from grad programs, which Brown can't really boast of.</p>