Dartmouth College ( ) is a private Ivy League research university located in Hanover, New Hampshire, United States. It consists of a liberal arts college, the Geisel School of Medicine, the Thayer School of Engineering, and the Tuck School of Business, as well as 19 graduate programs in the arts and sciences. Incorporated as the "Trustees of Dartmouth College," it is one of the nine Colonial Colleges founded before the American Revolution. With an undergraduate enrollment of 4,276 and a total student enrollment of 6,342 (as of 2013), Dartmouth is the smallest university in the Ivy League. It was the last Ivy League school to admit women, in 1972.
Dartmouth College was established in 1769 by Eleazar Wheelock, a Congregational minister. After a long period of financial and political struggles, Dartmouth emerged in the early 20th century from relative obscurity.
Dartmouth's campus is in the rural Greek system is strong. Dartmouth's 34 varsity sports teams compete in the Ivy League conference of the NCAA Division I. Students are well known for preserving a variety of strong campus traditions.
- History 1
- Rankings 2.1
- Admissions 2.2
- Financial Aid 2.3
- The Dartmouth Plan 2.4
- Board of Trustees 2.5
- Academic facilities 3.1
- Athletic facilities 3.2
- Housing and student life facilities 3.3
- Trees and grounds 3.4
Student life 4
- Student groups 4.1
- Athletics 4.2
- Native Americans at Dartmouth 4.3
- Traditions 4.4
Insignia and other representations 5
- Motto and song 5.1
- Seal 5.2
- Shield 5.3
- Nickname, symbol, and mascot 5.4
Dartmouth was founded by Eleazar Wheelock, a Puritan minister from Columbia, Connecticut, who had previously sought to establish a school to train Native Americans as missionaries. Wheelock's ostensible inspiration for such an establishment resulted from his relationship with Mohegan Indian Samson Occom. Occom became an ordained minister after studying under Wheelock from 1743 to 1747, and later moved to Long Island to preach to the Montauks.
Wheelock founded Moor's Indian Charity School in 1755. The Charity School proved somewhat successful, but additional funding was necessary to continue school's operations, and Wheelock sought the help of friends to raise money. Occom, accompanied by the Reverend Nathaniel Whitaker, traveled to England in 1766 to raise money from churches. With these funds, they established a trust to help Wheelock. The head of the trust was a Methodist named William Legge, 2nd Earl of Dartmouth.
Although the fund provided Wheelock ample financial support for the Charity School, Wheelock had trouble recruiting Indians to the institution, primarily because its location was far from tribal territories. In seeking to expand the school into a college, Wheelock relocated it to Hanover, in the William Legge, 2nd Earl of Dartmouth—an important supporter of Eleazar Wheelock's earlier efforts but who, in fact, opposed creation of the College and never donated to it—Dartmouth is the nation's ninth oldest college and the last institution of higher learning established under Colonial rule. The College granted its first degrees in 1771.
Given the limited success of the Charity School, however, Wheelock intended his new college as one primarily for whites. Occom, disappointed with Wheelock's departure from the school's original goal of Indian Christianization, went on to form his own community of New England Indians called Brothertown Indians in New York.
In 1819, Dartmouth College was the subject of the historic Dartmouth College case, which challenged New Hampshire's 1816 attempt to amend the college's royal charter to make the school a public university. An institution called Dartmouth University occupied the college buildings and began operating in Hanover in 1817, though the college continued teaching classes in rented rooms nearby. Daniel Webster, an alumnus of the class of 1801, presented the College's case to the Supreme Court, which found the amendment of Dartmouth's charter to be an illegal impairment of a contract by the state and reversed New Hampshire's takeover of the college. Webster concluded his peroration with the famous words: "It is, Sir, as I have said, a small college. And yet there are those who love it."Dartmouth emerged onto the national academic stage at the turn of the 20th century. Prior to this period, the college had clung to traditional methods of instruction and was relatively poorly funded. Under President William Jewett Tucker (1893–1909), Dartmouth underwent a major revitalization of facilities, faculty, and the student body, following large endowments such as the $10,000 given by Dartmouth alumnus and law professor John Ordronaux. 20 new structures replaced antiquated buildings, while the student body and faculty both expanded threefold. Tucker is often credited for having "refounded Dartmouth" and bringing it into national prestige. Ernest Fox Nichols (1909–16) and Ernest Martin Hopkins (1916–45) continued Tucker's trend of modernization, further improving campus facilities and introducing selective admissions in the 1920s. John Sloan Dickey, serving as president from 1945 until 1970, strongly emphasized the liberal arts, particularly public policy and international relations.
In 1970, longtime professor of
Various student initiatives have been undertaken to adopt a mascot,
Dartmouth has never had an official mascot. The nickname "The Big Green," originating in the 1860s, is based on students' adoption of a shade of forest green ("Dartmouth Green") as the school's official color in 1866. Beginning in the 1920s, the Dartmouth College athletic teams were known by their unofficial nickname "the Indians", a moniker that probably originated among sports journalists. This unofficial mascot and team name was used until the early 1970s, when its use came under criticism. In 1974, the Trustees declared the "use of the [Indian] symbol in any form to be inconsistent with present institutional and academic objectives of the College in advancing Native American education." Some alumni and students, as well as the conservative student newspaper, The Dartmouth Review, have sought to return the Indian symbol to prominence, but never succeeded in doing so.
Nickname, symbol, and mascot
College designer John Scotford made a stylized version of the shield during the 1960s, but it did not see the success of MacDonald's design. The shield appears to have been used as the basis of the shield of Dartmouth Medical School, and it has been reproduced in sizes as small as 20 micrometers across. The design has appeared on Rudolph Ruzicka's Bicentennial Medal (Philadelphia Mint, 1969) and elsewhere.
On October 28, 1926, the trustees approved a "Dartmouth College Shield" for general use. Artist and engraver W. Parke Johnson designed this emblem on the basis of the shield that is depicted at the center of the original seal. This design does not survive. On June 9, 1944, the trustees approved another coat of arms based on the shield part of the seal, this one by Canadian artist and designer Thoreau MacDonald. That design was used widely and, like Dwiggins' seal, had its date changed from "1770" to "1769" around 1958. That version continues to be used under trademark registration number 3112676 and others.
On October 28, 1926, the trustees affirmed the charter's reservation of the seal for official corporate documents alone. The College Publications Committee commissioned noted typographer W. A. Dwiggins to create a line drawing version of the seal in 1940 that saw widespread use. Dwiggins' design was modified during 1957 to change the date from "1770" to "1769", to accord with the date of the college charter. The trustees commissioned a new set of dies with a date of "1769" to replace the old dies, now badly worn after almost two hundred years of use. The 1957 design continues to be used under trademark number 2305032.
An Oval, circumscribed by a Line containing SIGILL: COL: DARTMUTH: NOV: HANT: IN AMERICA 1770. within projecting a Pine Grove on the Right, whence proceed Natives towards an Edifice two Storey on the left; which bears in a Label over the Grove these Words "vox clamantis in deserto" the whole supported by Religion on the Right and Justice on the Left, and bearing in a Triangle irradiate, with the Hebrew Words [El Shaddai], agreeable to the above Impression, be the common Seal under which to pass all Diplomas or Certificates of Degrees, and all other Affairs of Business of and concerning Dartmouth College.
Dartmouth's 1769 royal charter required the creation of a seal for use on official documents and diplomas. The college's founder Eleazar Wheelock designed a seal for his college bearing a striking resemblance to the seal of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, a missionary society founded in London in 1701, in order to maintain the illusion that his college was more for mission work than for higher education. Engraved by a Boston silversmith, the seal was ready by commencement of 1773. The trustees officially accepted the seal on August 25, 1773, describing it as:
Dartmouth's motto, chosen by Eleazar Wheelock, is Vox clamantis in deserto. The Latin motto is literally translated as "The voice of one crying in the wilderness", but is more often rendered as "A voice crying in the wilderness", which attempts to translate the synecdoche of the phrase. The phrase appears five times in the Bible and is a reference to the college's location on what was once the frontier of European settlement. Richard Hovey's "Men of Dartmouth" was elected as the best of Dartmouth's songs in 1896, and became the school's official song in 1926. The song was retitled to "Alma Mater" in the 1980s when its lyrics were changed to refer to women as well as men.
Motto and song
Insignia and other representations
Another longstanding tradition is four-day, student-run Dartmouth Outing Club trips for incoming freshmen, begun in 1935. Each trip concludes at the Moosilauke Ravine Lodge. In 2011, over 96% of freshmen elected to participate.
The summer term was formerly marked by Tubestock, an unofficial tradition in which the students used wooden rafts and inner tubes to float on the Connecticut River. Begun in 1986, Tubestock met its demise in 2006 when Hanover town ordinances and a lack of coherent student protest conspired to defeat the popular tradition. The Class of 2008, during their summer term on campus in 2006, replaced the defunct Tubestock with Fieldstock. This new celebration includes a barbecue, live music, and the revival of the 1970s and 1980s tradition of racing homemade chariots around the Green. Unlike Tubestock, Fieldstock is funded and supported by the College.
Dartmouth is well known for its fierce school spirit and many traditions. The college functions on a quarter system, and one weekend each term is set aside as a traditional celebratory event, known on campus as "big weekends" or "party weekends". In the fall term, Homecoming (officially called Dartmouth Night) is marked by a bonfire on the Green constructed by the freshman class. Winter term is celebrated by Winter Carnival, a tradition started in 1911 by the Dartmouth Outing Club to promote winter sports. In the spring, Green Key is a weekend mostly devoted to campus parties and celebration.
The college graduated only 19 Native Americans during its first two hundred years. In 1970, the college established Native American academic and social programs as part of a "new dedication to increasing Native American enrollment." Since then, Dartmouth has graduated over 1,000 Native American students from over 200 different tribes, more than the other seven Ivy League universities combined.
It is often pointed out that the charter of Dartmouth College, granted to Eleazar Wheelock in 1769, proclaims that the institution was created "for the education and instruction of Youth of the Indian Tribes in this Land in reading, writing and all parts of Learning... as well as in all liberal Arts and Sciences; and also of English Youth and any others." However, Wheelock primarily intended the college to educate White youth, and the few Native students that attended Dartmouth experienced much difficulty in an institution ostensibly dedicated to their education. The funds for the Charity School for Native Americans that preceded Dartmouth College were raised primarily by the efforts of a Native American named Samson Occom, and at least some of those funds were used to help found the college.
Native Americans at Dartmouth
The college also offers 26 club and intramural sports such as fencing, rugby, water polo, figure skating, boxing, volleyball, ultimate frisbee, and cricket, leading to a 75% participation rate in athletics among the undergraduate student body. The Dartmouth Fencing Team, despite being entirely self-coached, won the USACFC club national championship in 2014. The Dartmouth Men's Rugby Team, founded in 1951, has been ranked among the best collegiate teams in that sport over many years . The figure skating team won the national championship five straight times from 2004 through 2008. In addition to the academic requirements for graduation, Dartmouth requires every undergraduate to complete a 50-yard (46 m) swim and three terms of physical education.
Approximately 20% of students participate in a varsity sport, and nearly 80% participate in some form of club, varsity, intramural, or other athletics. In 2007, Dartmouth College fielded 34 intercollegiate varsity teams: 16 for men, 16 for women, and coeducational sailing and equestrian programs. Dartmouth's athletic teams compete in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I eight-member Ivy League conference; some teams also participate in the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC). As is mandatory for the members of the Ivy League, Dartmouth College does not offer athletic scholarships. In addition to the traditional American team sports (football, basketball, baseball, and ice hockey), Dartmouth competes at the varsity level in many other sports including track and field, softball, squash, sailing, tennis, rowing, soccer, skiing, and lacrosse.
The college has an additional classification of social/residential organizations known as undergraduate societies.
Dartmouth also has a number of secret societies, which are student- and alumni-led organizations often focused on preserving the history of the college and initiating service projects. Most prominent among them is the Sphinx society, housed in a prominent Egyptian tomb-like building near the center of campus. The Sphinx has been the subject of numerous rumors as to its facilities, practices, and membership.
Partially because of Dartmouth's rural, isolated location, the  this attempt to change the Greek system eventually failed. The fraternities have an extensive history of hazing and alcohol abuse, leading to police raids and accusations of sexual harassment.
Dartmouth's more than 200 student organizations and clubs cover a wide range of interests. In 2007, the college hosted eight academic groups, 17 cultural groups, two honor societies, 30 "issue-oriented" groups, 25 performing groups, 12 pre-professional groups, 20 publications, and 11 recreational groups. Notable student groups include the nation's largest and oldest collegiate outdoors club, the Dartmouth Outing Club, which includes the nationally recognized Big Green Bus; the campus's oldest and most prestigious a cappella group, The Dartmouth Aires; the controversial conservative newspaper The Dartmouth Review; and The Dartmouth, arguably the nation's oldest university newspaper. The Dartmouth describes itself as "America's Oldest College Newspaper, Founded 1799."
" in 2006 for Best Alumni Network.The Princeton Review The school is also home to a variety of longstanding traditions and celebrations and has a loyal alumni network; Dartmouth ranked #2 in " In 2006,
American elm located between Fahey Hall and Russell Sage (Dartmouth College campus, June 2011)
Two American elms located next to Silsby Hall, along North Main Street (Dartmouth College campus, June 2011)
American elm located at the corner of North Main Street and Route 10 (Dartmouth College campus, June 2011)
American elm previously located near Silsby Hall; this tree is no longer standing (Dartmouth College campus, June 2011)
American elm previously located in front of Parkhurst Hall; this tree was cut down in August 2011 (Dartmouth College campus, June 2011)
A notable feature of the Dartmouth campus is its many trees, particularly American elms. Like American elms throughout the United States, however, the elm trees at Dartmouth have been affected by Dutch elm disease and damaged by storms and other environmental conditions. Because the college is committed to maintaining the campus aesthetic, the trees are well cared for, and new plantings replace diseased or damaged trees that must be removed. Dartmouth's graduate community newsletter reported in October 2014 that there are still approximately 200 elm trees on campus, making it the most common species at Dartmouth.
Trees and grounds
The Collis Center is the center of student life and programming, serving as what would be generically termed the "student union" or "campus center." It contains a café, study space, common areas, and a number of administrative departments, including the Dartmouth Outing Club and The Dartmouth daily newspaper.
Campus meals are served by Dartmouth Dining Services, which operates 11 dining establishments around campus. Four of them are located at the center of campus in the Class of 1953 Commons, formerly Thayer Dining Hall.
 More than 3,000 students elect to live in housing provided by College. Since 2006, the College has guaranteed housing for students during their freshman and sophomore years. Instead of ungrouped dormitories or
Housing and student life facilities
Dartmouth's other athletic facilities in Hanover include the Friends of Dartmouth Rowing Boathouse and the old rowing house storage facility (both located along the Connecticut River), the Hanover Country Club, Dartmouth's oldest remaining athletic facility (established in 1899), and the Corey Ford Rugby Clubhouse. The college also maintains the Dartmouth Skiway, a 100-acre (0.40 km2) skiing facility located over two mountains near the Hanover campus in Lyme Center, New Hampshire, that serves as the winter practice grounds for the Dartmouth ski team, which is a perennial contender for the NCAA Division I championship.
Dartmouth's original sports field was the Green, where students played cricket and old division football during the 19th century. Today, two of Dartmouth's athletic facilities are located in the southeast corner of campus. The center of athletic life is the Alumni Gymnasium, which includes the Karl Michael Competition Pool and the Spaulding Pool, a state of the art fitness center, a weight room, and a 1/13th-mile (123 m) indoor track. Attached to Alumni Gymnasium is the Berry Sports Center, which contains basketball and volleyball courts (Leede Arena), as well as the Kresge Fitness Center. Behind the Alumni Gymnasium is Memorial Field, a 15,600-seat stadium overlooking Dartmouth's football field and track. The nearby Thompson Arena, designed by Italian engineer Pier Luigi Nervi and constructed in 1975, houses Dartmouth's ice rink. Also visible from Memorial Field is the Nathaniel Leverone Fieldhouse, home to the indoor track. The new softball field, Dartmouth Softball Park, was constructed in 2012, sharing parking facilities with Thompson arena and replacing Sachem Field, located over a mile from campus, as the primary softball facility.
Dartmouth's nine libraries are all part of the collective Dartmouth College Library, which comprises 2.48 million volumes and 6 million total resources, including videos, maps, sound recordings, and photographs. Its specialized libraries include the Biomedical Libraries, Evans Map Room, Feldberg Business & Engineering Library, Jones Media Center, Kresge Physical Sciences Library, Paddock Music Library, Rauner Special Collections Library, and Sherman Art Library. Baker-Berry Library is the main library at Dartmouth, comprising Baker Memorial Library (opened 1928) and Berry Library (opened 2000). Located on the northern side of the Green, Baker's 4,500 acres (18 km2) tower is an iconic symbol of the College.
In addition to its 19 graduate programs in the arts and sciences, Dartmouth is home to three separate graduate schools. The Geisel School of Medicine is located in a complex on the north side of campus and includes laboratories, classrooms, offices, and a biomedical library. The Dartmouth–Hitchcock Medical Center, located several miles to the south in Lebanon, New Hampshire, contains a 396-bed teaching hospital for the Medical School. The Thayer School of Engineering and the Tuck School of Business are both located at the end of Tuck Mall, west of the center of campus and near the Connecticut River. The Thayer School presently comprises two buildings; Tuck has seven academic and administrative buildings, as well as several common areas. The two graduate schools share a library, the Feldberg Business & Engineering Library.
The college's creative and performing arts facility is the Hopkins Center for the Arts ("the Hop"). Opened in 1962, the Hop houses the College's drama, music, film, and studio arts departments, as well as a woodshop, pottery studio, and jewelry studio which are open for use by students and faculty. The building was designed by the famed architect Wallace Harrison, who would later design the similar-looking façade of Manhattan's Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center. Its facilities include two theaters and one 900-seat auditorium. The Hop is also the location of all student mailboxes ("Hinman boxes") and the Courtyard Café dining facility. The Hop is connected to the Hood Museum of Art, arguably North America's oldest museum in continuous operation, and the Loew Auditorium, where films are screened.
Dartmouth's campus buildings vary in age from Wentworth and Thornton Halls of the 1820s (the oldest surviving buildings constructed by the college) to new dormitories and mathematics facilities completed in 2006. Most of Dartmouth's buildings are designed in the American colonial style, a theme which has been preserved in recent architectural additions. The College has actively sought to reduce carbon emissions and energy usage on campus, earning it the grade of A- from the Sustainable Endowments Institute on its College Sustainability Report Card 2008.
Dartmouth College is situated in the rural town of Hanover, New Hampshire, located in the Upper Valley along the Connecticut River in New England. Its 269-acre (1.09 km2) campus is centered on a 5-acre (2 ha) "Green", a former field of pine trees cleared in 1771. Dartmouth is the largest private landowner of the town of Hanover, and its total landholdings and facilities are worth an estimated $434 million. In addition to its campus in Hanover, Dartmouth owns of Mount Moosilauke in the White Mountains and a 27,000-acre (110 km2) tract of land in northern New Hampshire known as the Second College Grant.
Although the board elected its members from the two sources of nominees in equal proportions between 1891 and 2007, the board decided in 2007 to add several new members, all charter trustees. In the controversy that followed the decision, the Association of Alumni filed a lawsuit, although it later withdrew the action. In 2008, the Board added five new charter trustees.
Dartmouth is governed by a Board of Trustees comprising the college president (ex officio), the state governor (ex officio), 13 trustees nominated and elected by the board (called "charter trustees"), and eight trustees nominated by alumni and elected by the board ("alumni trustees"). The nominees for alumni trustee are determined by a poll of the members of the Association of Alumni of Dartmouth College, selecting from among names put forward by the Alumni Council or by alumni petition.
Board of Trustees
The D-Plan was instituted in the early 1970s at the same time that Dartmouth began accepting female undergraduates. It was initially devised as a plan to increase the enrollment without enlarging campus accommodations, and has been described as "a way to put 4,000 students into 3,000 beds." Although new dormitories have been built since, the number of students has also increased and the D-Plan remains in effect. It was modified in the 1980s in an attempt to reduce the problems of lack of social and academic continuity.
Dartmouth functions on a quarter system, operating year-round on four ten-week academic terms. The Dartmouth Plan (or simply "D-Plan") is an academic scheduling system that permits the customization of each student's academic year. All undergraduates are required to be in residence for the fall, winter, and spring terms of their freshman and senior years, as well as the summer term of their sophomore year. However, students may petition to alter this plan so that they may be off during their freshman, senior, or sophomore summer terms. During all terms, students are permitted to choose between studying on-campus, studying at an off-campus program, or taking a term off for vacation, outside internships, or research projects. The typical course load is three classes per term, and students will generally enroll in classes for 12 total terms over the course of their academic career.
The Dartmouth Plan
Dartmouth guarantees to meet 100% of the demonstrated need of every admitted student who applie] for and qualifies for financial aid at the time of admission. Dartmouth practices need blind admissions for all applicants who are U.S. citizens, non-citizens, and undocumented students in the U.S. These applicants are admitted to the College without regard to their financial circumstances. For international students, financial need is taken into consideration as one of many factors at the time of admission. At Dartmouth, free tuition is provided for students from families with total incomes of $100,000 or less—and possessing typical assets. In 2015 $88.8 million in need based scholarships were awarded to Dartmouth students.
Dartmouth meets 100% of students' demonstrated financial need in order to attend the College, and currently admits all students, other than international students, on a need-blind basis.
In the 2014-2015 admissions cycle, 20,504 applied and 2,120 were accepted for a 10.3% admit rate. Those who reported class rank were 38.4% valedictorians and 10.1% salutatorians, with 94.9% ranking in the top decile of their class. 49.8% identified as being students of color, and 14.9% are the first in their families to matriculate to college.
In terms of graduate success, the school is ranked 47th overall and 7th among Ivy League schools in return on investment by PayScale. With regards to mid-career salary, the school ranks 44th with an average mid-career salary of $104,700, a starting salary of $55,500, and a 47% job satisfaction rating.
For its graduate programs, U.S. News ranks Dartmouth's MBA program 9th overall and 6th for management. Among its other highly ranked graduate offerings, the school is ranked 40th in computer science, 29th in medicine for primary care, and 37th in medicine for research. Its global ranking places is at 242nd.
The 2006 Carnegie Foundation classification listed Dartmouth as the only "majority-undergraduate", "arts-and-sciences focus[ed]", "research university" in the country that also had "some graduate coexistence" and "very high research activity." Internationally, Dartmouth College was ranked 113th in the world in the 2012 QS World University Rankings.
In Forbes' alternative rankings of colleges, the ranking considers Dartmouth a liberal arts college, for which it ranks 8th, and 18th overall in its combined liberal arts college and national universities ranking. It ranks #2 in grateful graduates and received a financial aid grade of A+.
Dartmouth was ranked 11th among undergraduate programs at national universities by U.S. News & World Report in its 2015 rankings. Dartmouth's strength in undergraduate education is highlighted by U.S. News when in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013 it ranked Dartmouth first in undergraduate teaching at national universities. It has since been ranked 4th in this area in the 2015 rankings and second in the 2016 rankings. The institution also ranked first in High School Counselor Rankings in 2012. The college ranks 7th in The Wall Street Journal's ranking of top feeder schools.
|U.S. News & World Report||11|
Dartmouth serves as the host institution of the University Press of New England, a university press founded in 1970 that is supported by a consortium of schools that also includes Brandeis University, the University of New Hampshire, Northeastern University, Tufts University and the University of Vermont.
Dartmouth employs a total of 607 tenured or tenure-track faculty members, including the highest proportion of female tenured professors among the Ivy League universities. Faculty members have been at the forefront of such major academic developments as the Dartmouth Conferences, the Dartmouth Time Sharing System, Dartmouth BASIC, and Dartmouth ALGOL 30. In 2005, sponsored project awards to Dartmouth faculty research amounted to $169 million.
Through the Graduate Studies program, Dartmouth grants doctorate and master's degrees in 19 Arts & Sciences graduate programs. Although the first graduate degree, a PhD in classics, was awarded in 1885, many of the current PhD programs have only existed since the 1960s. Furthermore, Dartmouth is home to three professional schools: the Geisel School of Medicine (established 1797), Thayer School of Engineering (1867) — which also serves as the undergraduate department of engineering sciences — and Tuck School of Business (1900). With these professional schools and graduate programs, conventional American usage would accord Dartmouth the label of "Dartmouth University"; however, because of historical and nostalgic reasons (such as Dartmouth College v. Woodward), the school uses the name "Dartmouth College" to refer to the entire institution.
In order to graduate, a student must complete 35 total courses, eight to ten of which are typically part of a chosen major program. Other requirements for graduation include the completion of ten "distributive requirements" in a variety of academic fields, proficiency in a foreign language, and completion of a writing class and first-year seminar in writing. Many departments offer honors programs requiring students seeking that distinction to engage in "independent, sustained work," culminating in the production of a thesis. In addition to the courses offered in Hanover, Dartmouth offers 57 different off-campus programs, including Foreign Study Programs, Language Study Abroad programs, and Exchange Programs.
Dartmouth, a liberal arts institution, offers a four-year Bachelor of Arts and ABET-accredited Bachelor of Engineering degree to undergraduate students. The college boasts 39 academic departments offering 56 major programs, while students are free to design special majors or engage in dual majors. In 2008, the most popular majors were economics, government, history, psychological and brain sciences, English, biology, and engineering sciences. The Government Department, whose prominent professors include Stephen Brooks, Richard Ned Lebow, and William Wohlforth, was ranked the top solely undergraduate political science program in the world by researchers at the London School of Economics in 2003. The Economics Department, whose prominent professors include David Blanchflower and Andrew Samwick, also holds the distinction as the top-ranked bachelor's-only economics program in the world.
Dartmouth's close association and involvement in the development of the downhill skiing industry is featured in the 2010 book Passion for Skiing as well as the 2013 documentary based on the book Passion for Snow.
In May 2010 Dartmouth joined the Matariki Network of Universities (MNU) together with Durham University (UK), Queen's University (Canada), University of Otago (New Zealand), University of Tübingen (Germany), University of Western Australia (Australia) and Uppsala University (Sweden).
Since the election of a number of petition-nominated trustees to the Board of Trustees starting in 2004, the role of alumni in Dartmouth governance has been the subject of ongoing conflict. President James Wright announced his retirement in February 2008 and was replaced by Harvard University professor and physician Jim Yong Kim on July 1, 2009.
During the 1990s, the college saw a major academic overhaul under President Trustees of Dartmouth College v. Woodward and Dartmouth's successful self-reinvention in the late 19th century.
 In 1988, Dartmouth's alma mater song's lyrics changed from "Men of Dartmouth" to "Dear old Dartmouth"." of academic scheduling, permitting the student body to increase in size within the existing facilities.Dartmouth Plan At about the same time, the college adopted its " Kemeny oversaw several major changes at the college. Dartmouth, previously serving as a men's institution, began admitting women as full-time students and undergraduate degree candidates in 1972 amid much controversy.