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2021 Best Colleges for Mathematics

Approximately 30,414 mathematics degrees were awarded to students last year in the United States. With so many options it can be a daunting task finding the best fit for you. This year's Best Colleges for Mathematics ranking analyzed 176 colleges and universities that offer a bachelor's degree in mathematics. We look at over 20 factors to determine the top 15% of schools for Mathematics students.

Choosing a Great Mathematics School

Best Colleges for Mathematics Your choice of mathematics school matters. Important measures of a quality math program can vary widely even among the top schools. Below we explain some of the most important factors to consider before making your choice:

Quality Overall is Important

A school that excels in educating for a particular major must be a great school overall as well. To make it into this list a school must rank well in our overall Best Colleges ranking. This ranking considered factors such as graduation rates, overall graduate earnings and other educational resources to identify great colleges and universities.

The lowest ranked school in our list is in the top 11% of our overall quality ranking while the vast majority are in at least the top 6%.

Overall Best Colleges Rank  ( 88 to 1 )
Lowest Ranked Overall
Top Ranked Overall

Graduates Earn More After College

A mathematics degree from colleges on this list typically translates into higher than average wages following graduation. While the average mathematics bachelors degree from U.S. colleges results in an average starting salary of $44,028, graduates of colleges on this list average $63,456.

Starting Salary  ( 45368 to 76031 )
$0
$120,300

Other Factors We Consider

In addition to the above, you should consider some of the following factors:

  • Major Focus - How much a school focuses on Mathematics students vs. other majors.
  • Major Popularity - How many other mathematics students choose this school.
  • Accreditation - Whether a school is regionally accredited and/or a recognized mathematics related accrediting body.

Our full ranking methodology documents in more detail how we consider these factors to identify the best schools for Mathematics students.

Best Schools to Study Mathematics in the United States

Below you'll see a list of the best colleges and universities to study mathematics. Only those schools that rank in the top 15% of all the schools we analyze get awarded with a place on this list.

Top 25 Best Math Colleges

It is difficult to beat Massachusetts Institute of Technology if you want to study mathematics. MIT is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the city of Cambridge. A Best Colleges rank of 5 out of 1,715 schools nationwide means MIT is a great college overall.

There are about 138 mathematics undergraduates studying this degree at MIT. Massachusetts Institute of Technology mathematics graduates receive $56,844 more than the standard math grad.

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#2

University of Chicago

Chicago, IL

University of Chicago is a good decision for students interested in a Mathematics major. UChicago is a large private not-for-profit school located in the city of Chicago. A Best Colleges rank of 19 out of 1,715 schools nationwide means UChicago is a great college overall.

There are roughly 212 mathematics undergrads studying this program at UChicago. Mathematics students from University of Chicago get a earnings boost of around $7,244 over the typical income of mathematics graduates.

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#3

Johns Hopkins University

Baltimore, MD

Johns Hopkins University is among your best bets if you're planning on studying mathematics. Located in the city Baltimore, Johns Hopkins is a private not-for-profit college with a fairly large student population. A Best Colleges rank of 20 out of 1,715 schools nationwide means Johns Hopkins is a great school overall.

There are approximately 155 mathematics undergraduates enrolled in this degree at Johns Hopkins. Students from the mathematics major at Johns Hopkins University earn $15,144 above the average college graduate with the same degree shortly after graduation.

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#4

Vanderbilt University

Nashville, TN

Every student pursuing a degree in mathematics has to check out Vanderbilt University. Located in the city Nashville, Vanderbilt is a private not-for-profit college with a large student population. A Best Colleges rank of 24 out of 1,715 schools nationwide means Vanderbilt is a great college overall.

For those interested in something more advanced, Vanderbilt also offers 2 different higher degree levels in mathematics, the most popular of which is a Doctor's Degree (Research / Scholarship). Vanderbilt University mathematics students receive $12,044 more than the average math graduate.

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#5

Cornell University

Ithaca, NY

Cornell is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the small city of Ithaca. A Best Colleges rank of 17 out of 1,715 colleges nationwide means Cornell is a great college overall.

For those interested in something more advanced, Cornell also offers 2 different higher degree levels in mathematics, the most popular of which is a Doctor's Degree (Research / Scholarship). Cornell University mathematics majors make $12,844 more than the typical math graduate.

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#6

Duke University

Durham, NC

Located in the large city Durham, Duke is a private not-for-profit school with a large student population. A Best Colleges rank of 2 out of 1,715 colleges nationwide means Duke is a great school overall.

Duke University is a fairly popular college to study math in United States with over 68 graduates last year. Mathematics majors from Duke University receive an earnings boost of around $11,244 over the average earnings of mathematics majors.

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#7

Amherst College

Amherst, MA

Located in the suburb Amherst, Amherst is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population. A Best Colleges rank of 16 out of 1,715 colleges nationwide means Amherst is a great school overall.

Amherst College is a fairly popular school to study math in United States exceeding 74 graduates last year. Soon after graduation, math students typically make around $61,000 at the beginning of their careers.

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Located in the city Ann Arbor, U of Michigan is a public school with a fairly large student population. A Best Colleges rank of 38 out of 1,715 colleges nationwide means U of Michigan is a great college overall.

There are approximately 195 mathematics undergraduates enrolled in this program at U of Michigan. Students who graduate from the math program make around $61,900 for their early career.

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Located in the city Madison, Wisconsin is a public school with a very large student population. This college ranks 76th out of 1,715 colleges for overall quality in the state of Wisconsin.

For those interested in something more advanced, Wisconsin also offers 2 different higher degree levels in mathematics, the most popular of which is a Master's Degree. After graduation, math students generally make around $52,000 in the first five years of their career.

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Located in the city Troy, RPI is a private not-for-profit school with a moderately-sized student population. This school ranks 58th out of 1,715 colleges for overall quality in the state of New York.

A popular choice for mathematics undergrads, there are approximately 48 students studying this program at RPI. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute mathematics majors receive $7,044 more than the standard math grad.

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#11

Hamilton College

Clinton, NY

Hamilton is a small private not-for-profit school located in the suburb of Clinton. A Best Colleges rank of 22 out of 1,715 colleges nationwide means Hamilton is a great school overall.

Hamilton College is a fairly popular college to study math in United States with over 54 graduates last year. Students who complete this program report average early career wages of $59,200.

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#12

University of Virginia - Main Campus

Charlottesville, VA

Located in the small suburb Charlottesville, University of Virginia is a public college with a very large student population. This college ranks 42nd out of 1,715 schools for overall quality in the state of Virginia.

There are roughly 136 mathematics undergrads enrolled in this program at University of Virginia. Soon after graduation, math students usually earn about $60,700 in the first five years of their career.

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#13

Northwestern University

Evanston, IL

Northwestern U is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the city of Evanston. A Best Colleges rank of 12 out of 1,715 schools nationwide means Northwestern U is a great college overall.

A preferred major for mathematics undergraduates, there are roughly 64 individuals enrolled in this program at Northwestern U. Northwestern University mathematics students make $7,544 more than the typical math graduate.

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#14

Bowdoin College

Brunswick, ME

Located in the fringe town Brunswick, Bowdoin is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population. A Best Colleges rank of 30 out of 1,715 colleges nationwide means Bowdoin is a great college overall.

There are approximately 54 mathematics undergrads studying this degree at Bowdoin. Grads of the math program state that they receive average early career income of $59,400.

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UMN Twin Cities is a fairly large public school located in the large city of Minneapolis. This college ranks 124th out of 1,715 colleges for overall quality in the state of Minnesota.

For those interested in something more advanced, UMN Twin Cities also offers 2 different higher degree levels in mathematics, the most popular of which is a Master's Degree. Students who complete this program report average early career income of $54,100.

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#16

Boston College

Chestnut Hill, MA

Located in the city Chestnut Hill, Boston College is a private not-for-profit college with a large student population. This college ranks 61st out of 1,715 colleges for overall quality in the state of Massachusetts.

With 87 undergrads, Boston College is one of most popular schools to study math in United States. Boston College mathematics majors receive $2,244 more than the standard math graduate.

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UIUC is a fairly large public school located in the city of Champaign. This college ranks 92nd out of 1,715 colleges for overall quality in the state of Illinois.

There are roughly 230 mathematics undergrads enrolled in this degree at UIUC. Soon after graduating, math students usually earn around $44,900 in the first five years of their career.

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#18

Northeastern University

Boston, MA

Northeastern is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the city of Boston. This college ranks 81st out of 1,715 colleges for overall quality in the state of Massachusetts.

With 100 undergrads, Northeastern University is one of most popular schools to study math in United States. Graduates of the math program make about $63,700 for their early career.

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Located in the city Los Angeles, UCLA is a public school with a fairly large student population. This college ranks 65th out of 1,715 schools for overall quality in the state of California.

A popular major for mathematics undergraduates, there are approximately 191 students studying this degree at UCLA. Soon after graduating, math students usually earn an average of $51,000 in the first five years of their career.

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#20

New York University

New York, NY

Located in the city New York, NYU is a private not-for-profit college with a very large student population. This school ranks 130th out of 1,715 colleges for overall quality in the state of New York.

For those interested in something more advanced, NYU also offers 2 different higher degree levels in mathematics, the most popular of which is a Master's Degree. Students who complete this degree report average early career income of $53,400.

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Located in the city Austin, UT Austin is a public school with a fairly large student population. This school ranks 91st out of 1,715 schools for overall quality in the state of Texas.

For those interested in something more advanced, UT Austin also offers 2 different higher degree levels in mathematics, the most popular of which is a Doctor's Degree (Research / Scholarship). Soon after graduating, math students usually earn about $50,700 in the first five years of their career.

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#22

Macalester College

Saint Paul, MN

Located in the city Saint Paul, Macalester is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population. This school ranks 72nd out of 1,715 colleges for overall quality in the state of Minnesota.

Macalester College is a fairly popular college to study math in United States with over 52 graduates last year. After getting their bachelor's degree, math students typically earn an average of $57,300 at the beginning of their careers.

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Rutgers New Brunswick is a fairly large public school located in the small city of New Brunswick. This school ranks 183rd out of 1,715 colleges for overall quality in the state of New Jersey.

For those interested in something more advanced, Rutgers New Brunswick also offers 2 different higher degree levels in mathematics, the most popular of which is a Master's Degree. Students who graduate from this program state that they receive average early career wages of $55,300.

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#24

Williams College

Williamstown, MA

Located in the town Williamstown, Williams is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population. A Best Colleges rank of 7 out of 1,715 schools nationwide means Williams is a great college overall.

With 45 undergrads, Williams College is one of most popular colleges to study math in United States. Graduates of the math program make around $53,700 for their early career.

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UW Seattle is a fairly large public school located in the city of Seattle. This college ranks 97th out of 1,715 schools for overall quality in the state of Washington.

For those interested in something more advanced, UW Seattle also offers 2 different higher degree levels in mathematics, the most popular of which is a Master's Degree. Students who complete this degree state that they receive average early career wages of $44,800.

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Rest of the Top Best Colleges for Mathematics

Additional Noteworthy Schools

Here are some additional great schools for Mathematics students that almost earned our Best Colleges for Mathematics award.

Rank College Location
27 Binghamton University Vestal, NY
28 University of California - San Diego La Jolla, CA
29 University of Maryland - College Park College Park, MD
30 Pennsylvania State University - University Park University Park, PA
31 College of the Holy Cross Worcester, MA
32 Texas A&M University - College Station College Station, TX
33 University of California - Berkeley Berkeley, CA
34 Southern Methodist University Dallas, TX
35 University of California - Irvine Irvine, CA

Mathematics by Region

View the Best Colleges for Mathematics for a specific region near you.

Region
Southeast
New England
Rocky Mountains
Plains States
Middle Atlantic
Far Western US
Southwest
Great Lakes

Mathematics is one of 3 different types of Mathematics & Statistics programs to choose from.

Related Major Annual Graduates
Applied Mathematics 9,625
Statistics 8,953
Other Statistics 486

View All Math Related Majors >

Notes and References

  • The bars on the spread charts above show the distribution of the schools on this list +/- one standard deviation from the mean.
  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of the rest of our data about colleges.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard). More about our data sources and methodologies.

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