Where would you rank College of William and Mary among public universities?

<p>I've never really heard about it until now. It seems to be not well known on the west coast because it doesn't have big time sports programs. But the more I hear about it, the more it seems to be underrated. Where would you rank it among the public universities? Imo, it seems like the 5th best public university behind Berkeley, Michigan, UVA, and UCLA, but I'm probably wrong.</p>

<p>I'd say top 5 if not one of the top 3 for undergraduate education.</p>

<p>If you want a small college atmosphere with a liberal arts-focused education, it's probably tops.</p>

<p>
[quote]
it seems like the 5th best public university behind Berkeley, Michigan, UVA, and UCLA, but I'm probably wrong.

[/quote]
I would add UNC Chapel Hill in there. IMO, it's 6th after those five colleges. I also think its underrated and overlooked because of its small size.</p>

<p>Agree with Harambee. I would place it 6th behind the other universities listed.</p>

<p>with that said, it's still a VERY good university.</p>

<p>It's the 2nd oldest institution of higher learning in the USA, after Harvard. It has a long line of famous alumni from Thomas Jefferson to Jon Stewart.</p>

<p>It has the highest SATs of any public college. It is a super intellectual place.</p>

<p>vienna man, W&M (along with UVa and GT) superscores. For this reason, it is hard to compare its SAT average to Cal's and Michigan's, neither of which superscores.</p>

<p>W&M is a good public LAC, but as far as prestige, it's not well known, because it doesn't have good graduate programs or top sports program.</p>

<p>^ It is much smaller than the big public flagships (but bigger than a typical LAC). For some, this is an advantage. In scale it is comparable to Dartmouth. In selectivity it is similar to UVa, Michigan, Oberlin or Vassar.</p>

<p>Among people familiar with selective American colleges, William and Mary is very well known and has an excellent reputation.</p>

<p>In comparing W&M to the universe of top publics, the most important influence is the following:</p>

<h1>of incoming freshmen</h1>

<p>1395 William & Mary</p>

<p>3246 U Virginia</p>

<p>3960 U North Carolina</p>

<p>4356 UC Berkeley</p>

<p>4472 UCLA</p>

<p>6079 U Michigan</p>

<p>As the above shows, William and Mary is significantly smaller than any of the most highly ranked publics. Size of student population has a huge impact on the institution and the nature/quality of the experience that it can deliver to the average undergraduate student. </p>

<p>In some respects a large size can be an advantage as it will frequently translate to a larger faculty and a broader assortment of academic offerings. In other respects, the larger size can have a negative influence on class sizes, relative levels of access to resources and professors, selectivity, financial aid, etc. </p>

<p>In judging W&M place among publics, you really have to decide what is important to you. For technical subjects that often have a positive influence on a school’s regard within academia as measured by PA scoring, W&M’s either has no offering (engineering) or a comparatively weaker alternative. This is much less so in the humanities where W&M is seen as a leader. </p>

<p>As it relates to matters such as class size, W&M is much less likely to have the large classes that are commonplace at many highly ranked peers. In addition, attractive Student/Faculty ratios and a relatively low number of graduate students reflect a learning environment where the undergraduate student is the priority.</p>

<p>Hawkette, I agree that W&M is one of the best public universities for undergraduate education. It is on par with the likes of Cal, Michigan, UCLA, UNC, UVa etc... However, W&M is not a leader in the Humanities. Other than Colonial US History, I cannot think of a single W&M department that is considered a leader in its field. </p>

<p>And I am not sure I agree with the blanket statement that schools with large graduate programs shortchange their undergrads. It certainly wasn't my experience at two of the major research universitities I attended.</p>

<p>whenever Hawkette and Alexandre enter the thread, you know this is going to become a long debate</p>