Brown is known for its academic excellence rooted in the Open Curriculum. The Open Curriculum prepares undergraduates for productive lives by cultivating creative thinking, independence, and discovery through exposure to a rigorous curriculum in the liberal arts and sciences. At Brown, you can be the architect of your own education. You can sample courses in a wide range of subjects before immersing yourself in over 80 academic concentrations—or you can invent your own.
This innovative approach to education often demands more of students than a curriculum with core requirements. A special kind of student chooses Brown—one who is intellectually curious, self-motivated, and prepared for the academic rigor of charting their own path.
Faculty-student collaboration in the sciences
Renowned for the major impact they make in the world, Brown’s faculty are the educators you learn from in the classroom, in the laboratory, and in the field.
Brown makes a variety of fellowships, grants, and independent studies available through which undergraduates can work side-by-side with faculty members and graduate students exploring the frontiers of knowledge. Some examples of research conducted by Brown undergraduates in partnership with faculty:
• Brown’s student-run team won gold at the International Genetically Engineered Machines (iGEM) Competition for its project manipulating E. coli to cause it to glow bright green in the presence of lead.
• A rising sophomore doing summer research analyzed samples of lunar soil collected during the Apollo 17 mission. His discovery of crystals indicating an abundance of water within the moon’s interior led to publication as a second author in the journal Science.
• A rising senior’s research project exploring the properties of perovskite helped evaluate this promising new material that could form the basis for the next generation of solar cells.
The Brown undergraduate Engineering program, established in 1847, is the oldest in the Ivy League and the third-oldest civilian program in the nation. The School of Engineering continues in the Brown tradition, distinct among its peers, of making unique connections between the various engineering disciplines as well as other fields, including biology, chemistry, computer science, the humanities, medicine, physics, and the social sciences.
In 2015, the school opened a new chapter in its storied history, breaking ground on a new Engineering building. Completed in 2018, the three-story, 80,000-sq. ft. structure includes specialized facilities for nanoscale and biomedical engineering, along with two full floors of new lab space designed to foster collaborative and cross-disciplinary research.
The undergraduate Engineeringprogram is based on a common core ofsubjects that all concentrators (Brown lingo for “majors”) follow during their first two years. In the first year, students conduct calculation-based design projects, giving prospective engineers a sense of the discipline while providing them with the scientificfundamentals needed for future study. In the second year, students typicallytake courses in other areas of engineering, such as materials science, thermodynamics, electricity, and magnetism. In addition to providing a solid understanding of these important areas, the courses expose students to a broad range of engineering disciplines to provide a strong backgroundfor choosing a specialization near the end of the second year.
Brown offers ABET-accredited ScBconcentrations in Biomedical Engineering, Chemical and Biochemical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Materials Engineering, and Mechanical Engineering.
In addition, students may pursue other Engineering ScB programs such as Engineering and Physics, Environmental Engineering, or an independent ScB degree. Graduates of the School of Engineering have exceptional placement rates: 42% industry, 29% Engineering graduate school, 8% finance/consulting, 4% Business/Law/ Medical school, and 17% are pursuing other endeavors.
Since its inception in 1979, the Computer Science department at Brown has forged a path of innovative information technology research and teaching at both the undergraduate and graduate levels—and it’s one of the nation’s leading Computer Science programs as ranked by the National Research Council. The department has continuously produced many prominent contributors in the field.
The undergraduate program is designed to combine educational breadth in practical and theoretical computer science with deeper understanding of specialized areas such as analysis of algorithms, artificial intelligence, computer graphics, computer security, computer systems, and theory of computation. Undergraduates often take at least one semester of faculty-supervised independent study, working either on a project of their choice or as members of a team on a faculty-sponsored research project.
In addition to many other state-of-the-art facilities, our undergraduates have access to multiple parallel high--performance computer clusters and an Immersive Virtual Reality Cave.
If Brown is for you, we’ll help you get here
Brown actively strives to create a socioeconomically diverse applicant pool and undergraduate student body.Our financial aid policies are designed to enrich our campus communityby ensuring that students of talent and ambition who qualify for admission can come to Brown—regardless of their economic circumstances. Weare committed to meeting 100% of demonstrated financial need for all eligible undergraduates as determined by Brown’s Office of Financial Aid.
We are “need-blind” when making admission decisions, which means we do not consider an applicant’s ability or inability to pay the cost of tuition when making admissiondecisions. This applies to US citizens and DACA and undocumented students who attend high school in the United States.