Mount Holyoke College Top Questions

What are the academics like at your school?


The academics here are really excellent. A majority of the classes are interesting and diverse, with a small teacher to student ratio. Due to the fact that we are a small school by the time you've declared a major you're likely to know at least two if not three professors within your department as well as outside of it. Professors are almost always willing to help you out, recommend places or other students to go to for help when they're unavailable, and willing to understand your situation.


I would say that I have had two classes which were my ultimate favorite so far at Mount Holyoke College. One class was African-American culture in society, it was an inside-out course, which is a course that is shared with college students and inmates at a local jail. What made this class my favorite was that I learned a lot not just from my professor but mainly from the women inmates at the jail, they were extremely smart and offered their opinions and thoughts on the criminal justice. It was the class that helped me decide what direction I want to pursue for a career. Another class that was my favorite was the crime and prison industry in the US, it was the most interesting class I have taken. In the class we had heated debates, excellent readings and a wonderful professor. My least favorite class at Mount Holyoke was elementary Homeric Greek. Although the professor was extremely nice and helpful I just had a hard understanding a lot in that class.


Every professor I have had at Mount Holyoke has not only learned my name (and not from me brown-nosing), but has tried to get to know students in a personal way. For example, one of my biology classes was 180 people - HUGE for MHC. Because it was so large, they set up one-on-one meetings with every single student in the class to match names with faces. I have been invited to dinner at a few professors' and the college president's house, and go out for coffee with faculty and staff often. Students are academically competitive, but usually with themselves and not between each other (though every school has their gunners). Requirements can be a drag if you're only interested in a few subjects, but the school prides itself on liberal arts, so take your first year to explore through requirements. It has, and will, change many planned majors.


Mount Holyoke academics are rigorous. Most of your free time is spent studying. It's just how it is. That sounds like it would be boring or make you go crazy, but it's just sort of natural when everyone else around you is doing the same thing. It's nice to be surrounded by people with the same amount of dedication as you. The professors usually do know you by name. A lot of them make it a point to learn your names. The professors are just incredible. I love them. You can go sit in their office and have intense intellectual discussions, or you can just talk about how your weekend went. Outside of the classroom, you will always find students in intense debates. Always. The only thing I don't like is the P.E. requirement.


At Mount Holyoke, learning does not only occur in the classroom. One of my favorite aspects of this place is that students teach each other. Rarely is this group learning condescending or cut-throat. Students have no problem helping one another with homework or projects. In addition to informal learning, there are several resources for tutoring. The science and math departments have a tutoring program called PLUMS, and, for writing projects and presentations, there is the Speaking, Arguing, and Writing (SAW) center. There is a lot of work, and it is really important to consider your skills as a student when you register for classes in order to avoid being overwhelmed. Furthermore, professors really care about students' progress. All of the professors I've had encourage students to come to office hours. They are open to questions, they make you reexamine your beliefs and knowledge, and they are generally brilliant people. Mount Holyoke has amazing academic strengths: small classes, amazing support resources, opportunities for connecting academic findings to the community, a strong alumnae association, and stellar study abroad programs, just to name a few.


Classes here are generally small. This helps a lot with professor - student interaction. All professors hold office hours where everyone is welcome and the professors want to get to know you. This past semester, I have discussed assignments with my professors countless times and I always had the feeling that they were glad to help me out. Studying is very important at Mount Holyoke. Some classes have quite a heavy workload, additionally, our students are very driven. A huge percentage of our graduates goes on to grad school, another huge percentage joins the peace corps - you could say that both our studies and community service are two very important things on campus. Mount Holyoke's distribution requirements (a core curriculum, geared towards a "general education") gives you the opportunity to explore a broad range of subjects and gives you a sound body of knowledge. We also have a bunch of great and very popular study abroad opportunities for which financial aid is available.


I have had pretty good luck with my professors so far, which is absolutely great! Class participation is vital in most classes. Most of them have been accommodating and helpful, which I have really enjoyed.


The academics at MHC are great (as I mentioned before). Professors really push you to be your best, especially in seminars. Every professor I have had so far has been thought provoking. People here study a lot. The library is the place to be during finals week. We aren't really competitive with each other at MHC. People are competitive with themselves, but no one really competes with anyone else. We're all willing to help each other out! I think the academics at MHC are geared towards learning to appreciate education. We take the skills we learn in class and use them to go out and DO something. MHC is all about challenging women to change the world, and I truly think most women who come here want to make an impact.


Academics are wonderful - great advising, small classes, and supportive community. Sometimes students work too hard and it's not really good for anyone's health to go a week without sleep. but that just goes to show how serious we are about our work.


The academics at Mount Holyoke are very impressive. The professors really want to help you and really want to get to know each and every one of their students.


Academics are challenging and pretty time consuming. Participation is definately expected from every student, and students are very passionate. The conversations outside of class could even pass for class discussion for the most part. Professors go out of their way to know your name and help you in weak subjects.


One thing I have noticed in college, and I think this is generally true, especially in larger colleges (which Mount Holyoke is not!) is that initially it is harder to meet professors than in high school because instead everyone being in one or two buildings, the populace is spread all over campus. Some profs don't even know each other (a rare occasion)! Feeling this, I set out to meet some of them, namely my own professors. It is vital to go to their office hours, and not just to talk about homework. Talk to them, ask them about their kids. You never know where it will go. Some of my most memorable moments from this year are of homework discussions gone off-track to subjects like fly-fishing, quality and psychology of fashion, tactics of procrastinating, etc. Two of my absolute favorite professors I met because of gen eds. Now I'm considering making one of them my advisor! Both inside and outside the classroom, Mount Holyoke women know how to make education a fun and continuous life-experience. Frequently idle chatter develops into deep discussions of identity, social issues, politics, gender, etc. I will never forget, two nights in to freshman year all firsties were required as part of orientation to watch a documentary on racism and discuss in small group afterwards. We were so impacted by what we saw that for three hours afterward my new friends and I continued our own discussion in my room. "This is what I've been waiting for!" I thought. We actually held valuable conversation, unlike the insipid remarks of high school. Of course, we aren't seriously discussing all the time. Once in awhile we get a little crazy and goof off ;p Naturally we spend a lot of time together, studying, eating, helping one another, etc. I am happy to report that the general attitude is one of helpfulness and not acute competition. We are our own competitors, not our classmates. Mount Holyoke women are about lifting each other up and collaboration.


They are great! People here work hard, but it is because they want to. Many of the teachers are very inspiring. I personally have really "found" myself as a student- I am working on an honors thesis, which is something that in high school I never would have imagined myself doing.


There is a very wide selection of courses to choose from. In addition we also have the opportunity to take classes at Smith, Hampshire College, Amherst College, and UMASS Amherst. Unfortunately we have about a million distribution requirements. By the time we get those done, we have to declare our majors and there is no time to take courses outside our major that we are interested in. Students who take these "fun" or "interesting" classes in their First and Sophomore years often have problems with distribution requirements and major requirements down the road.


The professors vary like any other school. You occasionally get professors who are highly involved and passionate and occasionally you get professors who are only there because of tenure. The classes are small, even the large lectures (comparatively), and the academics are straightforward, nothing too creative.


Know your major entering the school because Mt. Holyoke has so many "distribution requirements" that you really don't have time to sample different subjects.


Academics at MHC are extremely demanding, if a student wishes them to be. However, the work is only part of the equation; professors are highly accessible, and classes are usually forums for plenty of discussion. This allows for the rigor of the academics to turn into an astounding amount of learning, instead of rote work and nail-biting. The classes and professors are inspiring, but more than that, the community makes it all come together.


The academics at MHC are great. Every professor I have ever had has known my name and known my interests. Class participation is expected, but there are always those few obnoxious girls who raise their hand so much that no one else gets a chance to talk. This is because the atmosphere is very competitive which is the one thing I can not stand about the academic environment. The education is definitely geared towards learning for learning's sake, but if you are focused and driven you can create a course of study that actually prepares you for a job.


HARD!!! The academics are serious and the professors are very serious about their topics. Yet, the professors are not intimidating. they are very approachable and glad to talk with you. Competition is very present but you cant focus on being better than others or you will go insane. You just have to compete with yourself. Every student have different academic goals and habits. You can get a 4.0 but you can only do so by studying 24/7. You have to find a healthy balance between work and play.


professors definitely know my name...i've ever gone to one's house for lunch. my favorite class is probably the english class that i had to take first was really small (9 ppl?) and everyone ended up being best friends at the end of the course; i'm even living with someone next year that i met during that class. students definitely study a little bit each day to get good grades...some people in the harder sciences are always in the library, buuut depending on your major, you will study from 2-9 hours every day guaranteed. mt holyoke students tend to have political debates outside of class, and i've definitely had some heated discussions on various topics with people. students can be competitive, but most of them are extremely helpful if you have a question or problem. my major is amazing. MATHHHH :). some of the teachers in my department are not so great, but it's cool cuz i can take classes off campus too if i need to/want to. moho definitely emphasizes learning to gain knowledge, and not learning to get grades or impress other people. they show that in the end, it is someone's knowledge and not transcript that matters.


The sciences are very strong and the professors are there to help you! Let them get to know you on a individual basis and they will be your friend all through your stay. The Career Development Center certainly is useful to help you pair your academics with useful networking internships or jobs. I chose Mount Holyoke because of it's liberal arts education. I'm able to take science classes and at the same time throw in a random history class for fun just as easily with very little scheduling problems.


The classes are small for the most part so it's easy to get to know your professors and work closely with them. Students tend to be fairly competitive. The most unique class I've taken is an American Studies course called Framing Youth Culture. We basically just studied youth expressive forms (like teen magazines, sex, even DJing). We had to write a research paper for it and I wrote mine on youth drug use. I'm not a huge fan of the distribution requirements, but I guess they're good to make the students "well rounded". Education is definitely geared towards learning for its own sake and not just employment.


Academics are a big deal. Biology is a big deal. Lots of pre med students. They don't have core education requirements where you have to take specific classes, but they have distribution requirements. Where you have to take so many classes from each catagory of classes (Humanities, Sciences, Lanuage and Social Sciences). This allows students to take a varity of classes in which they are interested in instead of the same old boring manditory classes. Self Scheduled Final Exams are fantastic! Beware of sketchy people trying to break the rules though, they ruin it for everyone.


Academics at MHC are very important, and students take them very seriously. Sure, there is the occasional slacker, but for the most part everybody worked very hard to get there, either for admission, a scholarship, or both, and don't want to waste the chance. The classes are engaging and the professors make an effort to know your name--particularly in the larger seminar classes where it's not imperative that the teacher remember who you are. Attendance has been mandatory in all but one of the classes I've taken, which is both good and bad. Good because if you're struggling, at the very least you'll have a 100 in attendance, and bad because if you're sick or have something you'd rather do, it's important that you either make it to class or communicate with your professor to make other arrangements--something that can be awkward at first. We have broad distribution requirements, but you'll end up filling most of them on your own as long as you take a diverse set of courses in the beginning--and your adviser will help you figure out the rest. I didn't really spend any time with professors outside of class, but when I saw them in the coffeehouse or library I would say hi and they would greet me back, but that might have just been my Southern Hospitality coming out. education at MHC can be geared towards getting you a job or a more theoretical, liberal arts, learning for its own sake--it all depends on your own course choices and goals.


This is why I chose Mount Holyoke when I was a freshman. My professors know my name and the classes are almost always less than 30 students. Everyone is as dedicated to their work as I am. Physics is a very small department, so my classes are no more than 10 students and we work together often outside the classroom. All departments stress that learning should be a lifelong process in search of knowledge, rather than a means to an end.


Most often, the professors do know your name. My favorite class this semester was my 100 level English class. I really learned a lot and enjoyed it because it was a first year seminar. My least favorite was Philosophy. I don't know about the higher level Philosophy classes, but I felt that I didn't learn a lot from my introductory level class. The professor didn't seem to know how to control discussion, which was unfortunate.


MHC is a great school academically...all the classes are small and the professors are for the most part very accessable. I think theres a little too much focus on idealism and there needs to be a slightly more realistic focus, at least in the politics department. Overall though i felt it was a great school academically.


Academics at Mount Holyoke are very rigorous. The professors are really great and care a lot about their students. There are several requirements as we are a liberal arts college. I'm really glad that I have had to take some core classes that I might have avoided otherwise (geology, computer science, a language). I probably would have avoided these classes but really ended up liking them.


Professors are great, they are always there to help. The work load is what you make of it. Students tend to be inwardly competitive, unlike some of our rival schools - cough, Smith, cough, cough - where things can get nasty between students (or so I hear.) Plenty of people spend their lives' in the library but I know that it is possible to balance a social life with good grades, at least after first year once you figure out how things work.


Professors are amazing. The majority of them learned everyone's names in the first two weeks, which is impressive in 100 level lectures. Students study a lot. Some actually don't, but I do and most of my friends do. I've found you have to do your homework thoroughly throughout the semester and don't leave it till finals!! Students are NOT competitive, just with themselves. There's the occasional girl who'll complain about ONE B and say "now i can't be valedictorian!!!" But those people deserve to be punched anyway. college is for learning damnit! I just took greek tragedy & film. we read greek plays and then watched fore xample Bladeruner and talked about similarities. It was great!!! The requirements are okay, the Phys. Ed. one makes me want to die: high school is over! The education is geared for learning but you'll definitely get a job leaving MHC!


Academics are amazing. Most people I talk to are overwhelmingly happy with the program they are enrolled in. Classes are small, professors are interested in your academic achievement and development, and there are plenty of resources on campus to aide you in your success. MHC is a liberal arts college therefore, you will most likely not find a major that is very career driven.


Just like any school or college, there are good and bad professors. It is just a matter of finding out which ones are good when you are choosing classes. It's very important to choose classes which are interesting to you.


I've loved most of the classes I've taken. A few profs that weren't my favorite, but some that I feel have had profound effects on my life and my learning. They always know your name, and are always willing to help outside of class. Students aren't competitive, and studiousness ranges, but I would say on the higher end. Sometimes I wish participation was just slightly more. There are always a few really articulate people in every class who participate frequently. And the one idiot who just won't shut up. Mt holyoke has a lot of distribution classes, but I think this is so important. I love learning about different subjects and making interdisciniplinary discovories. Broadening. I know my friends and I have very intellectual discussions. Most of us are dance majors, and we live and breathe it. I am so lucky to be able to immerse myself in something I love-- we talk about dance constantly, but we certainly aren't limited to that. Its a good mix.


Every professor I've had but one has known my name, even in my intro lecture classes. One of my favorite classes was a first year seminar I took in the music department "The Symphonies of Beethoven". The professor was so passionate and endearing that even though most of us had very little musical background (I sing and used to play the flute) we all came to love Beethoven as much as he did. I loved going to that class - the professor really made the music come alive for us. Studying time really depends on the student. Some people spend their lives in the library and get straight A's and that makes them happy. Other people never go to class and sometimes do their homework and don't get A's or pass all their classes, and I guess that makes them happy too. Most of us are in the middle - we study, but we also hang out with friends, procrastinate online, and do extracurriculars so we get decent grades and enjoy ourselves. A lot of my most interesting discussions happen out of class with friends when I try to explain what we talked about in class. Class participation really depends on the class, but it is always encouraged and happens a lot. Students who take classes off campus usually say that they are the only ones in the class, particularly the only women, who raise their hands and ask questions or make comments. Students can be competative, but it's always very friendly - the person getting better grades than you will usually end up being your study buddy and try to help you get the grade you want. The distribution requirements force you to take classes you normally wouldn't, which for me has turned out to be some of my favorite classes, like an English class I'm taking now. Learning for it's own sake is encouraged, although the end goal of a career is a focus for most people. A lot of professors invite students to their houses for end of the semester parties and are often seen eating with students and generally hanging out on campus.


Teachers are awesome, and truly make you feel like a colleague more than a student. Classes are hard, the professors do expect you to do work, but its nothing you can't handle if you took challenging courses in high school. People aren't competitive in terms of fighting with each other and cheating, but women here put way too much of an emphasis on keeping the perfect 4.0 GPA. The core requirements get pretty annoying, there are way too many of them, its hard to get all the requirements done while still exploring interests and fulfilling major requirements.


Class range at Mount Holyoke. The introductory level classes can be as large as 200 students while the higher level courses are much smaller. Academics are very competitive. Mount Holyoke students strive for top grades because they were the top students in their high schools.


This is not an easy school. You should never be bored here. Teachers here are very friendly and accessible, but have high expectations for you. The academic atmosphere is so different from that of my high school, where only the "nerds" were motivated to get good grades and excel. Here, everyone works, and works hard. For a while,I found all the intelligent people I was surrounded by to be intimidating, until I realized that I was capable of all the same achievements. During finals all the stress can be stifling, because we all care so much about our grades and doing well in classes. However, that does not mean that we don't have crazy parties or don't know how to have fun!


Yes professors know your name, they're awesome, if your a freshman ASK AROUND FOR THE BEST PROFESSORS. Taking a class with Hashimi, Ferraro, and Jones is a must! Students study preety often here, the library is where we live. I do spend time with professors outside of class, that way you can really delve into a research area of your choice. Education as Mount Holyoke is geared toward both. If you want to get into investment banking (which is what i'm doing) its great, we have classes like corporate finance, accounting, advanced corporate finance and money and banking which are classes that aren't even offered in the other five colleges so we have alot of students that are from UMASS, Amherst, Smith come here for classes.


Most of the professors learn my name, either by talking to them or they learn the names of everyone. There is definitely a lot of class participation, not as much in lectures, but still some. I love having the liberal eductation because I am not stuck taking one subject for my entire college years. I think I'd go insane if I had to do that. One of my favourite classes so far was my acting class (THEAT 106(?)). It was so much fun and it had a great atmosphere. I felt comfortable acting out my pieces in front of my classmates.


Most of the time professors your name because classes are small, and even in some large ones they know your name as well. My favorite classes were international immigration and contemporary France. Really intriguing! Students study A LOT! But there also those who don't, it's mixed but I would say the majority of students study very hard. Class participation is usually mandatory, especially in higher level classes. Mount Holyoke students ALWAYS have intellectual conversations outside of classes. There will always be competitive students, but Mount Holyoke is pretty chill. All my classes have been pretty interesting, but international immigration was both challenging and interesting. But if you don't do the reading, you'll get kicked out! I am an international relations and french double major. My department's are great. The professors are helpful. And the secretaries are very welcoming and sweet. Everyone is there to answer your questions. Mount Holyoke's academic requirements are challenging, especially for interdisciplinary majors like international relations, but well worth it. Mount Holyoke is geared towards helping you find a job, but at the same time just learning and being able to contribute to society outside of the career field.


All my professors call me by my first name after a few weeks. Some I like more than others, and some are absolute gems (Kimberly Dunn Adams). Students are not competitive with each other- they have their own pace but are always willing to help one another. There are an awful lot of requirements, but then it is a liberal arts education. All challenging, some easier or more interesting than others, but that depends on your tastes.


So good! Film is amazing here and I'm constantly inspired to learn more. Most professors are very accessible through email or office hours and that's very helpful.


Academics at MHC are incredibly diverse. I'm an International Relations major with a minor in Middle Eastern studies, and I am in awe of most of my professors. Not only are they at the top of their fields, they also take the time to get to know their students. When professors are walking across campus, students often call out to them and wave...there is a real feeling of community and learning here.


At Mount Holyoke we are incredibly studious women. It is not uncommon to find many people at the library on a Saturday night, or studying in the common rooms of dorms on Friday afternoons. We take pride in our academics here, and wouldn't have it any other way. At some colleges and universities typical lunch conversations may stray to the latest gossip around the school, but at Mount Holyoke it is a common occurance for dinner talk to include heated discussions of politics or any other number of intellectual topics. Our professors generally know us by first name, a fact we do not take for granted. Class sizes are small enough for intimate discussions to take place, and make no mistake that Mount Holyoke women will voice their opinions during class discussions.


hardcore shit. Everyone thinks being a dance major was a way to get out of work. I wasnt aware that writing fifteen page research papers on a subject in dance was a way to get out of work. we push ourselves mentally and physically to be the best dancers we can, i dont see many history or english majors pushing themselves physically for their degree.


professors know most peoples names fav. class: physics love the professor study: all the time, MHC has lots of work class participation: everyone participates no holding back Intellectual conversation: all the time, everywhere on campus requirements: fine, easy to fullfill with different classes


Very good academics. close relationship between students and professors. My favorite class is a poli-sci class based on Russian history/ politics. Students study ALL OF THE TIME. Always have intellectual conversations outside of class. Class participation is common, competition is present. My most unique class was African music and dance. I just declared history major, like the professors in the department a lot. Hate the language, math and science requirement. I don't know if my education is geared towrd getting a job. Our career development center is supposed to be great for finding us jobs.


Yes. Professors know my name. My favorite class is at Hampshire right now taught by a Umass professor. There's two other students in the class with me and we get to talk a lot about race and world issues and how they effect us. Least favorite is music analysis. The professor is just intimidating. I study around 4 hours a day probably. Class participation is extremely common. Students often have intellectual conversations outside of the class, but that all depends on the person. Students are competitive, but it depends on the field of study how they express their competitiveness. In music I feel students are more ambitious for improving themselves than against other students. I've taken a class called Dance Improvisation. It was really strange. A lot of rolling around on the floor with people you may never have met before. My department for my major is tiny. There are probably about 12 majors and all their pictures are on the first floor of the building. The department requires a lot of particular classes so it's not very flexible in terms of where you decide to take the classes. However, most of the professors are wonderful people and teachers. I have spent some time with some of my professors outside of class, but not on a regular basis. Except my Japanese professors at language table. That's every week. Our academic requirements are all over the place which is why it's a liberal arts college. It is not difficult to fulfill them although there are many. The education tries to give you an education for its own sake, the Career Development Center however, is an office on campus completely dedicated to helping you find a job during and after you graduate.


The women here are really intelligent, but the class atmosphere is totally non-competitive. For instance, I have a friend who transfered to UPenn because it had a "better reputation" but when she got there no one from her classes would even lend her lecture notes. Pretty much everyone here works really hard to get good grades, but not in a competitve way at all. Class discussions are usually really engaging, but people aren't falling over each other to get a word in, which I find happens a lot in classes I have taken at Hampshire and Amherst.


Professor will definitely know your name if its a smaller sized class. Intro classes are terrible. The intro Chem and Bio classes are absolutely ridiculous, but necessary. I love all the 300 level bio classes. MHC students have many many intellectual conversations outside of class and its really great. Students are sometimes competitive, but only if the course is designed in such a way. I guess it really depends on the person, but usually people aren't that competitive. The MHC requirements are not that difficult and you have a lot of room to do what you want. I think that MHC is geared more towards learning... not exactly towards getting a job.