Biggest Difference Between Dartmouth and Trinity College, Dublin
As you may know from reading my previous blogs, I am currently doing a transfer term at Trinity College, Dublin. My experience so far has been amazing, and it has really highlighted the differences between Dartmouth and other universities.
1. Location: Trinity is in the heart of Dublin, which is quite different from Dartmouth's rural location in New Hampshire. Being in a city has shown me the importance of community. On the weekends, students vacate campus and migrate to spots in the city; at Dartmouth, students really come together and make the most of the rural location with hikes, trips, and campus-coordinated activities.
2. Enrollment Size: Trinity is a large university with over 20,000 total students, which is much larger than Dartmouth's small 4,400 undergraduate size. At Dartmouth, I almost always see a friendly face on my way to class; at Trinity, I recognize very few people. In my Dartmouth classes, I usually know at least one person who I can study with or ask questions; with Trinity's large size, it's much harder to build connections with classmates.
3. Courses: Because Trinity is nearly five times the size of Dartmouth, my classes are much larger. All of my classes have at least fifty people in them, while at Dartmouth, the majority of my classes have fewer than twenty students. Thus, the lectures at Trinity are much less engaging and less discussion-focused than at Dartmouth.
4. Major: Dartmouth is a liberal arts college, meaning it encourages students to try many fields of study. On the other hand, Trinity students pick one or two majors, and they can only take classes in their chosen field. Because of this, Trinity students have a much more limited choice in their course selection than Dartmouth students. Next term at Dartmouth, I plan to take math, physics, anthropology, and a classics course—courses across numerous disciplines; while at Trinity, students only take three courses in their specific major.
5. Housing: At Dartmouth, 90% of students live on campus all four years, and at Trinity, the vast majority of students live far off campus, often with their parents. I really appreciate the fact that Dartmouth students all live close together because it fosters a unique sense of community that Trinity lacks, with students living all over the city.
Overall, my experience at Trinity has highlighted several unique aspects of Dartmouth that I really appreciate!