Harvey Mudd College seeks to educate engineers, scientists and mathematicians well versed in all of these areas and in the humanities and social sciences so that they may assume leadership in their fields with a clear understanding of the impact of their work on society.
The founders of Harvey Mudd College envisioned a distinctive educational experience for the College’s students. The curriculum was designed to create scientists and engineers with unusual breadth in their technical education and a firm academic grounding in the humanities, social sciences and the arts.
The required curriculum, as revised by the College in January, 2010, is divided into three components: the Common Core, which provides the foundation for advanced study; the program in Humanities, Social Sciences, and the Arts, which completes the liberal arts nature of a Harvey Mudd College education by providing humanistic, social scientific, and aesthetic perspectives; and the Major, which builds depth and technical competence. Unifying all of these is an emphasis on strong oral and written communications, the development of computational skills, and direct experience with a research or design project. The academic programs are demanding, but the College fosters cooperation rather than competition under a successful Honor Code.
In order to be recommended by the faculty for the Bachelor of Science degree, students are required to complete satisfactorily a minimum of 128 credit hours of courses (including approved transfer credits for courses taken at other colleges). Students must also complete all of the requirements of each of the three curricular components as well as a physical education requirement.