Math Major Percentages By Institution

People often wonder what is the typical percentage of college students that are math majors, and perhaps more importantly, what is the range of percentages across different institutions. I have seen a few efforts where people try to collect the data by hand.  


This seems like the kind of question a computer should be able to answer, so I used publicly available data to generate a spreadsheet with this data for most of the colleges in the US.


I list for you (1) my approximate methodology so people can reproduce this and improve on it, and (2) some highlights of the data. If you think I'm wrong, blame Excel and the IPEDS data that the institutions reported.


Please email me if you have suggested changes.


- Eric Hsu, Sep 11, 2013


The raw spreadsheet: Math Majors Percentage by Institution, 2010



1. Download raw data from IPEDS. http://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/datacenter/InstitutionByName.aspx

I; downloaded all math and stats majors for 2010, total. You can specify breakouts by demographics and by specific submajors, but I didn't. The interface is cranky, but mostly documented.


2. Import into Excel. Massage data with pivot tables to sum up the total first and second majors for each institution, then combine that with the total bachelors given. Use more pivot tables to assemble a single spreadsheet.

Top 20 Institutions by absolute number of math BAs awarded, 2010

InstitutionAll Bachelor'sMath majors, 1st or 2nd % of BAs that are Math
University of California-Berkeley7092252 4%
University of California-Los Angeles7543214 3%
University of Washington-Seattle Campus7753171 2%
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor6457166 3%
Stony Brook University3525159 5%
The University of Texas at Austin8838158 2%
University of Wisconsin-Madison6558121 2%
University of California-San Diego5857121 2%
Massachusetts Institute of Technology1116116 10%
University of Minnesota-Twin Cities6942115 2%
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign7422114 2%
Grand Valley State University3928110 3%
University of California-Santa Barbara5005107 2%
Purdue University-Main Campus6385103 2%
University of Chicago1209102 8%
University of Maryland-College Park6569101 2%
Pennsylvania State University-Main Campus1149698 1%
Harvard University180196 5%
Northwestern University221995 4%
University of Virginia-Main Campus356193 3%



Top 21 Institutions by Math BAs as % of Total BAs, 2010

InstitutionAll Bachelor'sMath majors, 1st or 2nd % of BAs that are Math
California Institute of Technology19235 18%
Harvey Mudd College17222 13%
Wabash College20422 11%
St. Olaf College71676 11%
Williams College52555 10%
Massachusetts Institute of Technology1116116 10%
University of Chicago1209102 8%
Bryn Mawr College31926 8%
Edward Waters College897 8%
Pomona College37528 7%
Wheelock College16312 7%
Hamilton College49836 7%
Grinnell College37927 7%
St Lawrence University52136 7%
Colorado School of Mines66746 7%
Centre College29320 7%
University of Alaska Southeast1057 7%
Colby College48132 7%
University of Minnesota-Morris29619 6%
Scripps College23114 6%
Carnegie Mellon University137183 6%