Ohio State University-Main Campus Top Questions

What are the academics like at your school?


I would be lying to you if I said I loved the lectures, but what can you really expect? Being cramped into an auditorium with hundreds of other people certainly has it's ups and downs. Some of the subject matter for particular classes can be dry and at times it feels impossible to want to even go to class. I'd say this isn't very different than anywhere else.




The academics expectations are very high at Ohio State. My favorite classes are based upon my major. Class participation is high encouraged and students are very competitive. My major is biology and the department is highly knowledgeable.


The academics are challenging, yet the professors ensure that we are fully prepared for the difficult curriculum.


There are classes of all sizes with more popular classes and general education classes in lecture halls of seven hundred students or more specialized classes in a class of thirty students. Most of the larger classes have a recitation which is like another day of class but taught by a teacher assistant and with only thirty other student. Professors typically do not know your name unless you are very active in class and/or are in a small classroom. I am majoring in business and am specializing in accounting and I am a Fisher direct student which means that I was automatically admitted to the business school as a freshman. Fisher college has a program called Fisher Connect which helps students find jobs and internships.




The academic rigor at my school is intense. However, for a law school, the sense of cut-through competition is very low. The curve and grade distribution lends itself to giving everyone relatively good grades (b+ average), which really changes the landscape of things. Essentially, what normally would be a very high gpa, may not put you nearly as close to the top of the class at my school as it would at others without such a significant curve.


The academic environment of the Ohio State University is wonderful. It's competitive when or if you want it to be. The professors I've had have been incredible--intelligent, helpful, dedicated to imparting knowledge to and making connection with every student. For such a big university, the classroom atmosphere is a close one--I never feel lost or alone.


Starting answering!Tons of fun- we learned a lot while working hard


Despite the size of Ohio State, I have never felt lost in a sea of students here. Sure, some general education courses are held in large lecture halls with a couple hundred students, but that is certainly not the norm, at least with my major. I am an English major with concentrations in creative nonfiction and women's studies and have found most of my classes to have under 20 students. Participation is a percentage of the grade for almost every class, so it's encouraged. As with anything, the more you put in, the more you will get out. I have developed lasting bonds with a couple of professors and stay in touch through email. Professors here are very flexible with their office hours, and work with you to improve your grade if it is not to your satisfaction. I find the coursework to be easy - I have gotten good grades fairly easily, and having never set foot in a library. I wish students were a little more intellectually-minded, but most just seem to want to pass, so that they can party, graduate, get a job, and start a family. Academics are not too challenging here. There are, however, lots of job posting boards and all sorts of internships continually being added. I got a great internship in NYC through my department. My favorite class here was Hollywood Women. It was a feminist film class and I recommend it to everyone. My least favorite was a poetry course that compared classic poems to indie lyrics. Sounds cool, but the professor was really intense and saw things in black and white. But these are two examples of some of the edgier classes this school offers.


Professors knowing your name: most of the time, especially in upper lever classes. In classes with 100 students or more, probably not. My favorite class: Social Dance I and Economics 200 Least favorite: Biology, had a very goofy professor! Participation common? Yes, very much. Intellectual conversations outside of class? It really depends on the students. If they cared enough then yes, intellectual conversation is almost all what I and my friends talk about. Competitive? Yes, anyone who frequently gets C's will start getting harassed by the university and possibly kicked out. Also, there are 60,000 undergrads, so there is more competitiveness. Unique class: Gun politics, Riflery, Social Dance Major: Political Science, the department is almost empty of conservatives! Spending time with professors: Yes if I like them enough. My relationship with me adviser is very strong. Academic requirements: stupid. If you're majoring in biology, you have to take history and math and a bunch of non-sense that you'll never need. If you're majoring in political science, you have to take four classes of a foreign language and history and math and a bunch of non-sense that you'll never need. Education towards getting a job? Mostly not. It depends on the subject you're studying. Studying political science will get me no job for its knowledge. Studying Biology will prepare me for med-school. Studying engineering might actually be beneficial and help me get a job in the future.


Ohio State, from my experiences, has an amazing academic reputation. Most of the classes I have taken I have thoroughly enjoyed. My teachers are always upbeat, willing to help with office hours. emails and meetings and are truly interested in what they are teaching and how they can communicate the subject to their students. My favorite classes have been my Biology and Chemistry classes. Although, sometimes very difficult and frustrating, I enjoy being challenged and feel that I can work together with my teachers, teaching assistants and fellow classmates to excel in those classes. I also really enjoyed my public speaking classes. One of those classes was an elective for my major and it was inspiring, interesting and allowed me to tackle my fear of public speaking in a positive and comfortable environment. The overall academic environment at Ohio State is very positive. Students truly care about doing well in school and there have been a many friday nights I have been at the library and it was packed with students. I have also experienced that students want to participate and engage in class with their teachers. Even outside of the classroom there are study groups, exam reviews and clubs that talk about, participate in events and even research geared towards their academic subject interests. Most importantly, Ohio State has endless resources for their students allowing them to find jobs and internships. It a comfortable and stable academic environment at Ohio State and I give this school credit for my drive, perseverance and success.


It is impossible to describe Ohio State students in one short paragraph. The students are extremely diverse, with tons of different ethnicities, sexual orientation, socio-economic status etc. For this reason, I find that most OSU students are accepting of people other than themselves and open to other cultures and practices. No student could ever feel out of place at Ohio State because there are a 1,000 groups to get involved with, and there is surely something that you would share in common with others. Most students are laid back, wearing casual clothes to class and simply being there to get the class over with. On the weekends, people hang out with their own groups of friends and do what they like to do-such as getting dressed up and going dancing, or just staying in to relax and watch a movie. There are all types of people represented at OSU!


Almost every professor that I have had at Ohio State has been exceptional. Most are more than willing to meet with students outside of class and understand how to relate to students. I am an english major and the professors do a good job of constructing their classes to fulfill the needs of the students.


Again, I might fall into one of the more academic-minded niches of OSU as an honors student in the English department and self-proclaimed half-pretentious, half-dweeby linguaphile, but I have felt very satisfied with the academic life here. Most of the other English majors I know are equally passionate about their studies and are always up to talk about our shared interests--it seems like social niches are often spurned from shared majors. My classmates and I always turn up at the same parties and have mutual friends, which is interesting when the size of the school is considered. I am genuinely excited to attend all of my English classes, and have always felt my professors to be quite accessible. Our department community is very close-knit, and I often still visit past professors during their office hours. This past quarter, I took a class called "The Poetics of Indie Rock," which studied the evolving canon of poetry, and considered how the lyrics of modern indie music might function how poetry did in past generations. We literally spent the whole class reading and discussing lyrics, and at the end of the quarter, had the opportunity to Skype with the lead singer The National. It was cool. Overall, the prevailing academic trends seem to vary as much as the students themselves. I know plenty of kids who are mainly concerned with partying, and sort of hoping to pick up a bachelor's degree somewhere along the way. But I also know people who are super passionate about their studies, people who want to devote their lives to academia. And ultimately, as the school becomes more selective, classes are quite simply becoming more challenging. To earn A's, you better be prepared to work hard and devote plenty of time to your classes.


I personally felt that the majority of my undergrad was not particularly challenging. However, I was an education major, and Ohio State is a research institution. Therefore, majors such as math, the sciences, engineering, and the like are difficult, challenging, strenuous, and any other word you can think to describe them. However, there are opportunities to be challenged in other majors, too. The psychology department constantly carries out research that students can participate in, both as subjects and as researchers. The humanities department regularly supports "Dinner and Dialogue" events, where students can meet with a professor in a more relaxed atmosphere but still talk academics. The Honors and Scholars program pushes students to succeed and strive for their best potential. In all honesty, what you get out of Ohio State academics is what you put into them. If you do not go out of your way to experience and succeed, then your time here will be stunted.


The academics are what you make them. A professor won't know your name unless you make sure they do. The broad range of classes gives you a ton of possibilities to choose from and study from, but the class sizes can be problematic if you don't have the right approach. My favorite classes were the writing workshop classes I took because the class size was only 15 students and I could participate regularly. Some classes I took were 150 students in a lecture hall and you never said a word to the teacher. If you are good at studying on your own, or make friends with the guy/girl sitting next to you, then it's pretty easy to participate and have intellectual conversations outside of class. The most unique class I took was Food Science 411, Brewing Science. We looked at beer from a scientific standpoint, and since beer's a pretty common topic at the university level, students really got into the debates we had over which ingredient was the most important, hops, yeast, water, or grains? I'm an English major, so debates and arguments have been a large part of my education. In the English department, students have a really personal relationship with professors because the major way we communicate ideas is through the words we write in papers. Learning is more geared toward your teacher understanding your view, how you communicate it and what you learned about it as you completed that analysis. Other departments may prepare students more for getting a job, but the English department has always focused on learning for its own sake. My least favorite classes, like everyones, are the general education requirements I've had to take. Of course, you can always find classes that are interesting if you plan a few quarters ahead, but you will no doubt end up in a class that you have zero interest in. That's when you appreciate 10 week quarters and the knowledge that if you can just tough it out for one quarter, you will never have to take statistics 135 again.


Academics at Ohio State have always surprised me. For every 600 person lecture (usually lower level, general education science or math classes) there are half a dozen 20 person discussion-based seminars. Professors vary here from totally uninterested to extremely engaged. Graduate students have been some of my very best instructors. I have taken many, many classes that changed my entire world view for the better. If you can join the Honors Program, do so, if only for priority scheduling, but also for the more challenging curriculum. Although I've taken lower level classes that challenged me, the higher you go, the more likely the professor is enthusiastic about the subject he teaches. All instructors are required to have office hours to help their students one-on-one. I'm an English major, and I'm convinced we have some of the best professors on campus. I took a class on "Comic Books in Film," and it turned out to be one of the most academically fulfilling seminars I'd take, and the next quarter I took another English class with that professor on 1930s literature. I have friends that are science or engineering majors and their academic lives are certainly more strenuous, since my homework as a humanities major is usually about 300 pages a week of reading (give-or-take) and the occasional paper/project. There are classes I coast through--usually the ones required to get your degree (we call them "general education classes," or GECs), but for the most part my classes have been challenging and engaging and above all worthwhile.


Like any other place, you get out what you put in. Some majors are definitely harder than others, but it all comes down to what you want to do. My experience has been unique in that I'm an Honors student. This means that my class sizes are smaller than most and that I get a lot more one on one time with professors. This may not be the case in larger classes, but I've been in some of those as well and as long as you make an effort to familiarize yourself with your professors the class size really isn't an issue. Just go to office hours and discuss assignments and test questions; ask them questions that interest you even if it's not exactly what you're learning about in the course. The faculty here really just want to see that you're engaged in the material. Work hard and try to actually get an education instead of just a degree and you'll find all the challenge and advancement you can handle at OSU.


The academics here are great. Some of your GECs will be huge lectures (my Bio 101 lecture had 600 people in it) but, those types of lectures will also have something called recitation. Recitations have about 20-25 people in them and they're taught by graduate assistants who help you with the material that the professor went over in lecture. So far, all of my teacher have known my name and will even recognize and acknowledge me if I see them on campus - aside from the huge lecture professors, of course. Right now, I'm taking a ballroom dance class; it's only 1 credit hour and it's super easy and a lot of fun! I know that a lot of schools don't offer classes like that!


Because many entry-level classes are large lectures followed by small recitations, students must make an effort to get to know their professors. They all have office hours, and many stay after class to answer questions. Recitations are helpful because they are much smaller, so you get one-on-one time with a TA. Students are helpful, but still competitive. If you miss class one day, it isn't hard to find someone to give you the notes. It definitely has the "we're all in this together" atmosphere, rather than "every person for themselves." I am in the honors program, which gives me the opportunity to have smaller classes with very desirable, expert professors. I am a Psychology major, and now that I have started taking my major classes, the size of my classes has decreased, which is nice. Professors are usually very willing to help students outside of class either in office hours or special meetings.


Diverse in all ways


Academics are fairly serious depending on what you're majoring in. An English major has a much easier time than someone majoring in Engineering


Some courses are of course easier than others and people take them for that reason. Some courses are also tough because they should be. Organic chemistry is not an easy class and most people shouldn't get a good grade in it.


There is a major for everyone here and there are graduate level opportunities for all the undergrads to try out. Academically, Ohio State has strong admissions so that helps with the general quality of your education. I was in the Fisher College of Business which has some really great programs that are nationally ranked. People are ambitious (but in very normal and nice way) here, so that translates into strong job opportunities with a very large alumni network. We push each other to be better because believe it or not, it is fun to talk in class. Our professors care about whats going on in the world and with our generation so once you get into your major classes it becomes a lot more lively. There is a lot of research that is done at Ohio State so in the sciences and in the general education your professors can be kind of distant but you dont want them to pay close attention because then the class gets harder. and there is nothing worse than a modern art professor trying to take over your life when you have your real major homework to get through.


If you can get into the honors college at Ohio State you can expect to have an Ivy League caliber education. Class sizes are typically under 30 with the most packed only going as high as 40 and all of my Professors have been amazingly accesible and always remember my name. It definitely isn't to hard to build relationships with professors if you make a point of talking with them. My experience has been fantastic. The students here are all pretty well rounded so not very many are found buried in their books all day. Most are athletic in some way and intramurals are great. The Fisher College of Business is definitely one of the most competitive colleges on campus. No one is cut throat - we definitely are more of team players - but frequent case competitions for students as young as freshman keep everyone on their game. I was able to secure an internship with Sony Music Entertainment after my Freshman year thanks to a great staff in the Career offices and most of my friends had similar experiences.


A lot of professors won't take the time to know your name. Some will take pictures of you at the start of a class and use them as flashcards to know your name. I've had both types and I don't really care either way. I find that the large classes with professors that don't think well warrant a lot of learning things on your own. Depending on who you're around (I'm in the Honors program), people can study A LOT or none at all. Students aren't really competitive, we all just do our thing. I know in the Business college at least, that they try to teach a lot to help with getting a job in the real world. In fact, there is a program to help you get a job before you graduate. OSU students can have intellectual conversations if in the right settings. Last year, a preacher came to the Oval and sparked a lot of debate about religion and there were many conversations about politics around election time.


Academics is sorta secondary at OSU after sports. Some professors will know your name, most probably won't. Unless you go into office hours, they don't really care what you do or how you do. Your favorite classes are probably going to be the upper level classes because the general classes are big and probably not harder than high school. Certain crowds at OSU are great but don't look forward to stimulating intellectual conversations with the average student outside class. Competitiveness does not really exist. I'm a history major, you have to take a few hours in


Classes are kind of huge, but people here are really smart. It's definitely not a place where if you're lost in a class, you can coast along and still get a C. The psychology department is huge, but we have a lot of awesome classes we can take and the classes you can take for the major are really open.


Most professors are not very personable. I had my first one this spring that tried to get to know our names. In large lectures you are just another student, however in the smaller recitation classes there are only 20-30 students. You have to make it a point to talk to your professor, just for the sake that they get to know your name and can recognize your face. This will make a great difference.


Some professors knew me by name. Some didnt. Students in honors dorms study enough to get 3.0+ while kids in other dorms party and mess around a lot more. This school is pretty competitive just because so many people go here. One of my favorite classes was a 2 credit hour internet class on avoiding cancer. Other unique classes I know that are available are sport specific classes (flag football, soccer, karate, dancing, gymnastics, basketball....), beer and wine making class, sky diving class (costs a little extra), and career classes. This university is academically geared towards anything you want it to be. You can do anything.


Some classes have hundreds of students, and others have less than 30. Most larger classes also have smaller recitations (classes with about 20 students that are taught by a TA [Teachers Assistant]). The recitations help you learn the more difficult topics that weren't quite understood in lecture. Fisher is a great business school with tons of state-of-the-art technology.


I'm in the School of Environment and Natural Resources, which is in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Science. It's located away from main campus, so there is much more of a small college feel. Academically, the classes are very interesting. They are helpful because they are more applied, so they translate better to the real world.


Classes can be large, however professors will get to know you if you make the effort. If you visit them during office hours and talk with them, they will know who you are. They don't come after you, but I can proudly say that all of my teachers my last 2 1/2 years of college knew who I was. This was in large part because I talked with them, asked them questions, and made sure they knew who I was. You are a number at OSU, but you can create meaningful relationships if you put forth the effort. I love the Exercise Science Department, and they have some top notch staff. Dr. Devor trains the Blue Jackets hockey team, and writes for Men's Health magazine. He is by far the most interactive, energetic, and enjoyable lecturer I have every had. Also, Professor Callam is the best Organic Chemistry Professor I have every had, he makes it as easy as it can be. OSU definitely has some gems for professors, but there are many who are primarily concerned with their research and are very dismal at teaching. Also, be careful of large GEC classes and foreign professors, they can speak very poor English. Overall OSU can provide an exceptional education.


Academics here are great! We have access to some of the best professors. My favorite class at OSU has been EDU PAES 509, Sport Marketing.


Some professors know my name. In college, one doesn't have to go to class unless the class requires attention. My favorite class is Chemistry or Biology even though they are both hard here at OSU. The material is extremely interesting and fun to learn. The students here are pretty competitive as I feel that each year Ohio State is getting harder and harder to get into and that the academic reputation is rising every year.


School stays in library and in class, outside is where you live your life, and not let your academics determine everything.


I think I've discovered another stereotype that I can discount: with 60,000 students on campus, most classes are huge in size. I'm in a scholars program, which gives me some priority scheduling. Not much - honors students get much more priority, even freshmen. However, even honors students still have to take general education requirement classes; it's not smart for honors students to take more than one or two honors classes a quarter. And yes, being in the honors program really helps minimize class size. On the contrary, I've noticed that the largest classes are the more general requirement classes, and they're the most popular ones. My Biology 101 class had 712 people in the lectures three days a week; however, in the labs once a week, only 24 people were in a class. So yes, you might be sitting in a lecture with hundreds of other people, but when you have recitation or lab, you will be in a much smaller class size. Teaching assistants mostly teach the labs and recitations, but they earned their position. They are being paid to teach and they are knowledgable about the subject matter. The professors are always available during office hours and through email, too! My biology professor even made it a point to visit every lab once so students could see him up-close, meet him, and ask him any questions they had. Even if you do end up in a big class - and most of mine have been 50 students or less - it's not hard to have your questions answered and get one-on-one help. The people who say it is hard aren't trying hard enough. Lecturers and TA's always stress to students to ask for help when they need it, so don't be intimidated by large class sizes! Help is ALWAYS available! And you're still getting just as good of an education as you would be if you were in a small class!


They are challenging. Even though Ohio State is known for its partying and sports, the academics are not to be taken lightly. I felt challenged in almost all of the classes I have taken. I feel that they have prepared me very well for optometry school. I would say that most of my professors know me by name, but that is beacuse I take an active role in class. I go to class everday, ask questions in class, and attend office hours. OSU also offers a lot of fun classes that I have participated in. I took two quarters of fencing, a yoga class, and a golf class. I loved them and they helped me to relax outside of all my academic classes.


Great small town classes big 10 quality !


Professors of lectures do not actually spend time to really know who's who.


When you start out as a Freshman classes can take some adjusting to the large lecture halls and the impersonal atmosphere. But most of the professors are willing and want to meet you. If you go to office hours or talk to the professors after class they are more than happy to get to know you. As you get into upper level classes, the class size begins to get smaller and more personal. Ohio State has a very competitive atmosphere and with students from all over the country and different backgrounds it is a great place to strive. There is a variety of classes to choose from and it allows you to form the curriculum you want to take.


Since there are so many classes each quarter, it is impossible to characterize them all. I have the typical evil, uncaring, miserly professor who refuses to give an A, but much more often I have had professors who really care about my education. They put a ton of work into finding great material for our class, and are willing to talk about their research or your academic interests any time.


Most professors in the general classes like chemistry 101, biology, or physics do not know your name because the classes are so big. Your TA knows your name and they can help you a lot. Also, even though the professor doesn't know your name, that doesn't mean they aren't going to help you.


Once you are into your major program yes they do! My favorite class was either Sport for the Spectator with Coach Tressel or Allied Med 601- Death and Dying. Least favorite- by far, BioAcoustics. Well, depends on your courses and major. I would at least an hour everyday for each class. Not so much in lecture but that's what recitation is for. I did just because my job required my classroom knowledge, but I would assume others probably talked about their respective learining as well. I never really noticed but then again my major was 98% female, so there was some definite cattiness. Most decidely- Sport for the Spectator, not only was it taught by the head football coach but was an awesome way to get an easy A. My major is Speech and Hearing, it is in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences. It is an extremely well developed program- it's ranked within the top 20 in the country. I did spend some time with professors outside of the classroom but only because I worked at the Rehabilitation Hospital at the Medical Center, and several of the Speech Therapists I wroked with also taught classes. Well, there are fair some of the requirements are slightly ridiculous but I understand why they are in place. Depends upon the program you decide on, some programs are strictly for the sake of learning but if you find the right one, you learn the necessary information and understand what it means to have a job in that field.


I've grown to feel at home at OSU, though so much attention goes to science, research and SPORTS that being a double major in music and English can feel a little alienating. The lack of funding and attention from the community toward the College Arts really pisses me off, especially now that I've seen what amazing talent we have here. However, that's what happens when you're at a public university instead of a liberal arts school; though we are every bit as good as Capital University on the other side of town, people assume we aren't and therefore don't really pay attention. I'm in an organization that is working on that money issue, and hopefully one day we will be well-funded and the stigma will go away. Now that I'm off my soap box, though, one great thing about classes is that there are so many. Sometimes I feel we have to take too many GECs (seriously, statistics and plant biology for a B.A. in music?), though the variety of classes offered makes certain requirements more bearable. You can also take lots of "fun classes" - every dance style is offered, for example, as a course for credit (read: easy A). I feel like professors in most fields try to get to know their students as much as they can, and like any other school there are good ones as well as bad. The ones who are not so great usually are unapproachable because they subscribe to the school's emphasis on research and focus on their careers (like publishing for "important" scholarly journals), or they are just plain bad teachers. The others however, are down to earth and usually have a sense of humor. Because of the size of the university, there are lots of GTAs who teach introductory courses, though my experience with graduate students has often been as good (or even better than) my experiences with professors.


One of the great things about Ohio State is that you don't really feel like you're competing with the other students in your classes. By and large, your fellow students are more than willing to work together on homework or study together for a test. The professors at Ohio State are great about making time for students. They're more than happy to answer questions during class, after lecture, during office hours, or by e-mail. One of my professors even gave out her cell phone number the last week of class, in case we had questions over the weekend while we were studying for the final.


OSU's education in teaching and learning was great--more interaction b/w students & professors.


-some professors are good with names in smaller classes, others will ask you every day what your name is; in lecture classes, they don't particularly care what you call yourself -I have yet to take a class that I enjoy; most of them are dull and I feel like I've taken the same 3 English classes over and over again because they all cover the same material -studying habits depend on the student -class participation is not something most teachers force, so unless it's a controversial topic, there are a limited number of students who always have something to say -from conversations one overhears walking across campus, intellectual stimulation is reserved for the classroom -it seems that most students just want to do what they have to in order to graduate, and they don't particularly care how they rank against everyone else...sports are a different matter -I don't have time to take the fun, unique classes if I want to graduate before I die -I'm an English major, which requires 60 hours of English classes...what a shame that one of the largest departments have 30 classes that all cover the same periods, authors, and works. It's a great use of my 4 years and $12,000. -seeing professors outside of class is painful -the academic requirements at OSU are ridiculous: as an English major I'm required to take 4 different science classes, a 2 class sequence of either bio or physics, one class of whichever one isn't your sequence, and then another science just for the fun of it...what is that? -OSU is all about wasting its students' time learning useless material over and over again so they can take our money.


Being that OSU is such a large school and Psychology being one of the more prevalent majors, I have fallen victim to classes where my professor never knew my name. When you are in a general 100 level class that most every student has the option to take, you will run into classes with hundreds of students. Given this, I would never expect a professor to learn everyone's name. However, I have found that if you take advantage of office hours, the professors are more then welcoming and make it a point to get to know you, your name, and will recognize you during class. If you make it a point to stand out, you will. OSU is competitive and there are a lot of intelligent, motivated, and ambitious students. I look at this as a blessing. Being in such an environment helps me strive and achieve the goals that I set for myself and have allowed for new ones. The real world is a competitive place and getting it first hand before you're expected to deal with such an issue is an advantage every student shouldn't take for granted. I feel that I have been prepared to handle life after graduation, and not just in the academic sense. College is the best place to help prepare you for work, but also helps you grow and mature into the person that you always knew you could be.

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