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Boston College

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What are the academics like at your school?

I was a chemistry major, so I took many of the same classes as the really competitive pre-med students. These classes are huge lecture based classes thus making faculty interaction minimal. Most of the chemistry department never bothered to learn anything about their students. One standout was Steve Bruner. His classes always were interesting and he made an effort to remember anyone who came to visit him at his office. I also was a math minor, which I loved. I thought the math department was great. I loved each of my professors.

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While there are certainly some students who slack off, they're only hurting themselves. BC is a tough academic institution, and if you want to be at the top of the hiring pool or readily admissible by the best graduate/law/medical programs in the nation, then you better work-work-work during your four years here! The type of work you have depends on your major (I wrote a LOT of papers), and if you plan your time properly and manage your reading and assignments, you'll never have to miss a football game or pull an all-nighter.

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I am a nursing major, so I have a different academic experience than most students at BC. I have clinicals in the Boston hospitals at least two days a week and then have classes one or two of the other days and therefore I am not on campus very often. I only go to the library for finals, otherwise I study in my room or in Lower dining hall. I like how I am able to have many one on one experiences with instructors in clinical because it helps me to apply the information that I have learned in class.

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The academics are good. The class sizes are rarely huge, so it is easy to get to know your professors. The one problem I have with academics at BC is that at times, you are just expected to just take your professors word for it on certain things. You can take classes that are geared toward a profession and you can take classes just for the sake of learning. They require 5 classes per semester, while most schools require 4. You get a chance to take more electives that just interest you.

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BC is a place where you can make the most out of it if you want to. There are some outstanding teachers here but there are always some classes that bore you to death that you are required to take. Students here are serious about their school work, but they get it done in and seem to let it go. It's up to you if you want to take a class in a big lecture hall or one with just 30 students. In the smaller classes participation is almost always required and attendance is usually taken.

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The majority of the professors here are very good. There are many that are incredibly good at their subject and aren't condescending about it. They take the time to get to know your name and who you are, if you're willing to put a little bit of effort into it. The only downside is that, as a freshman, you get shafted for the upperdivision classes. The really good and popular ones are always full by the time you go to register, so you're left kind of hanging.

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There is a lot of core which is good and bad, because you graduate with a lot of knowledge in many different fields, but it limits your exploration process to see what you want to major in. There is a lot of participation required, mostly in smaller classes, but in the seminars it is usually digital participation. Through the semester you at least have one group project which is also good and bad, because you get to meet people, but it is time consuming.

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The Theater department at Boston College is like a close-knit family. Everyone works together on a daily basis. A lot of people think that BC students are just at this school to get a good job in the future. Worse however, is the idea that BC professors and its curriculum aid that desire. All I can say is that the first day of one of my classes, my professer said, "who the hell cares about getting a job? Just do what you love. Find your calling here."

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The academic workload at BC is pretty tough, but of course that depends on your major. Professors are pretty willing to help students and for the most part want them to do well. I am in the School of Education and a Human Development major, which is considered easy(for the most part true). This department has a lack of good professors and I look for challenging but rewarding classes outside of my major.

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I've found that BC students are not very competitive, in that they are always open to help you, or form study groups to prepare for exams. In general, the classes are small, and the professors are definitely there for you, but you may have to put in a little but of effort. I find professors love it when you go to their office hours, and hence they are very helpful when you are there.

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