what is the the advantages and disadvantages of studying at a private university??
That is a hard question to answer. Its hard to generalize private universities and non-private universities as they are all different.
In general I guess private universities cost more, but then in some cases they also can provide more financial assistance. However, this is not always true. For instance, correct me if I am wrong, I think Northwestern's total expenses (tutiton room board meals books etc) is listed as $49,xxx, and they do not provide scholarship and grants based solely on academics, only need based aid. Where as Loyola Chicago is a little cheaper in cost, not by much, but the jesuits are pretty good about giving financial aid, and Loyola also has multiple grants and scholarships just based on academics.
So finance is one plus and minus to private universities, it just depends on the school.
There are private schools that are "prestigious" and ones that are not, same for public universities. There are large private schools and small private schools.
Some private schools may have a large endowment, and have money to spend for new equipment and research projects but again thats not to say there aren't public universities of equal or better caliber.
In my opinion you have to judge it on a school by school basis, you can't make many claims about all private schools or all public schools.
One thing to consider however, something that has been discussed on this forum to a great extent, is that the education one can receive doesn't differ all that much for an undergraduate degree in physics. If you go to an expensive school with a great name, or a smaller state school, the degree won't be too different. Both types of schools have the potential to expose you to great teachers. In fact you may find that at a smaller school you get more one on one time with your professors, where as at a larger more "prestigious" school like Harvard Yale Princeton etc. you may just be one of the crowd of brilliant physics majors and go unnoticed.
I hope this helps a bit, I know I didn't give any definitive differences between the types of schools.
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