Institutional and Educational Goals

The founders of Harvey Mudd envisioned the College as a “liberal arts college of engineering and science.” Harvey Mudd’s educational goals are based on the tradition of liberal learning which encourages the growth of broadly educated citizens, and promotes reflection, self-understanding, and a sense of self-worth in all students.

Student Learning Outcomes: The Core Curriculum

The following are student learning outcomes that describe our current Core Courses, meant to be descriptive, not prescriptive. They are a snapshot of our current Core and may evolve over time.

Each Core Course provides the opportunity for students to demonstrate at least one of the following abilities:

Critical Thinking/Reasoning

  • Recognize, understand, and construct appropriate patterns, structures, and models to solve problems in novel contexts (Fluency).
  • Analyze or construct arguments, considering underlying assumptions and potential counterarguments where appropriate (Critical Thinking).
  • Reach sound conclusions based on logical analysis of evidence (Sound Reasoning).
  • Formulate new questions for active inquiry, and demonstrate the competence and confidence to build on one’s knowledge base. (Active Engagement).
  • Identify, evaluate, analyze, synthesize, and document appropriate sources (Information Literacy).

Disciplinary Thinking

  • Articulate the beauty, power, and promise of our core disciplines (Disciplinary Appreciation).
  • Consider problems from the perspective of each discipline, applying concepts and techniques from that discipline (Disciplinary Thinking).
  • Apply the scientific method, including hypothesis formation, data collection, analysis, and interpretation (Scientific Method).

Interdisciplinary Thinking

  • Integrate strategies from multiple disciplines to solve problems (Interdisciplinary Thinking).
  • Appreciate key ideas in the discipline from a variety of perspectives, including historical perspectives and the contribution of diverse cultures (History and Culture).

Societal Impact/Application

  • Link theory to applications of technical work in society (Applications).
  • Explore the relationship of technical work to society and contemporary cultures (Societal Impact).

Collaboration and Communication

  • Communicate clearly and persuasively for the intended audience, in oral and/or written form (Oral and/or Written Communication).
  • Collaborate effectively as part of a team (Teamwork).

Educational Goals for Harvey Mudd College

The Strategic Vision Curriculum Committee identified educational priorities for the College which, in conjunction with the ratification of the new Core curriculum, were approved by the Harvey Mudd faculty in October 2008:

  1. Exercise technical expertise developed through rigorous foundational work and an emphasis on problem solving in learning communities
  2. Appreciate and employ different kinds of knowledge and expressive sophistication as the basis for critical analysis and synthesis and self-examination
  3. Serve society by addressing the complex problems of the world, creatively, passionately and humanely
  4. Flourish in a multi-cultural community and global environment
  5. Lead examined and meaningful lives

Institutional Goals for Harvey Mudd College

As stated in Harvey Mudd 2020: Envisioning the Future, Harvey Mudd College has identified six strategic goals for the institution:

  1. Innovation, leadership and impact, especially in engineering, science and mathematics
  2. Focus on experiential and interdisciplinary learning
  3. Unsurpassed excellence and diversity at all levels
  4. Nurturing and developing the whole person
  5. Global engagement and informed contributions to society
  6. Improvement of infrastructure and resources to support Harvey Mudd’s commitment to excellence and building community