I am in the process of selecting colleges to apply to this fall. I plan on majoring in Physics or another STEM related career. I am interested in receiving the best undergraduate education in Physics possible (tuition is not a consideration). For me, quality of instruction and professors' attention to undergrads is of the utmost importance. Also, undergrad research opportunity is a must, but I am not so concerned with super advanced labs and such as an undergrad. I initially assumed that criteria such as PHD production or return on investment (http://web.reed.edu/ir/phd.html , http://www.bestvalueschools.com/physics-degrees-best-roi/ ) made sense as search criteria, however I am now worried that this may not be true for me. I have been informed that many top rated physics universities such as Harvard, MIT, etc are of course great for Grad School, but not very focused on the undergrad experience... While schools like Harvey Mudd, Swarthmore, Rice, and Case Western will offer a better undergrad learning experience. I have found zero rankings that take into account my priorities as listed above ( which is understandable as I guess it is hard to quantify "professor interest in teaching") 1. Can any current students, faculty, or other advisers comment on the Physics undergrad experience at big name schools (Ivys, Stanford, Johns Hopkins, big state schools etc)? 2. Does the small size of the physics major (at most unis anyway) sort of guarantee that classes will be small from the start, and undergrads can access profs for help and research opportunities? Finally, if a knowledgeable person would like to create a list of schools that do/do not focus on undergraduate learning in physics (assuming undergrad learning=small classes even as freshmen, proff attention to undergrads), it would be much appreciated.