Virginia Commonwealth University Top Questions

What are the academics like at your school?


Strong research focused academics with top public colleges (art, education, etc.) in the nation


They are very challenging no matter what major you choose, but as long as you make time and take the effort to study for those classes it shouldn't be a problem for you to be successful in any of your courses, plus the university has two libraries on both campuses with plenty of space for you to be able to study.


The classes range from very difficult to very easy. The professors are great and I feel like I'm getting the quality education I was promised when I started going to VCU.


Challenging yet incredible


The strong bod between you and your professor is awesome.My best class so far is Statistics!


As an English as well as a Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies major with a Psychology minor at VCU, I believe I have a well rounded view into what the academics are like at VCU. First, I have to say how amazing the departments of my majors are. They are absolutely phenomenal in advising, the variety of professors and the standards they uphold. I have never had a bad experience in either of those departments and they have overall helped me grow as personally, professionally, and as a student. The professors have really changed my life for the better and I am so proud to say that I have been a part of their influence in my years. I am a very engaging student and have found that you receive out of courses what you put into them. If you are excited about the course material, and even if you aren't, and participate, ask questions and do the course readings, you will do well. Some classes can be very difficult but there are resources outside of the classroom to always help offset that balance, like the student center, the writing center and SI sessions that many students take advantage of. Depending on which classes you attend, you may find a class where all of the students verbally participate or you may find classes where nearly no one participates or it is a lecture class where it is the teacher's responsibility to give out information. Either way, the learning and teaching styles are different and change from classroom to classroom. I am a student whose name gets tossed around with my professors because I do participate and I prepare for class, sometimes helping instruction. I succeed by being engaging in my classes. But one of the greatest things about the academic component of VCU is the fact that the classes do keep students thinking. Students carry the conversations from their classes into their lives and challenge the views of others, based on their new enlightened opinions. I think that is one of the most important parts of being in a university of this size, all of the learning cannot take place in the classroom and because of that it is up to the student to take class learning and apply it into their lives and some professors really help to do this outside of classes. They are readily available during office hours and if requested, some are willing to meet to go over things in different settings and I love that fluidity with classes. As a graduating senior, I feel like the academic requirements fit well for students at VCU. The general requirements make sure that all students have the skills needed to move forward at the school and take those skills outside of the university and once you get into your major the classes are geared toward helping you grow in your chosen area. So I like the academic requirements. Plus the minimum GPA really isn't that difficult to achieve if as a student you do what you need to for your classes and actually attend them. Now looking into where the education is geared, it really depends on the student and their own interests. VCU offers such a variety of classes that it is up to the student to choose ones that will profit them educationally and professionally for the future. It is their own responsibility.


The academics are challenging, but rewarding


Even though VCU is the largest university in Virginia, the class sizes, with the exception of most introductory classes, are quite small. All of my in-major classes have been made up of 25 students or fewer and the professors have all gotten to know us on an individual level. Class discussions are usually encouraged and help make up your grades and all of the professors I have had in my time here (I am now a senior) have been very approachable. As a student in the School of Social Work, I am required to hold an internship that counts as a class credit but that you go to off campus. This has allowed me to apply what I have learned in my many classes to actual social work situations which will definitely set me apart from other students when I am applying to jobs as well as graduate programs.


10/10. Amazing and worth the horrible city/local people. My professors know me very well and care about what I do with my life. I am majoring in Applied Mathematics and minoring in Homeland Security, because I want a job out of college. If you're set on being an art major, so be it...VCU is your school, but be prepared to get scrutinized for choosing to major in art. And for the record, I am a 3.8 student, with numerous extracurriculars. The only students that are capable of having intellectual conversations are in the School of Government and the Engineering/Science/Med. students. Don't ask an art, education, fashion, music, or mass communications (absolutely) student because you'll just get frustrated.


10/10. Amazing and worth the horrible city/local people. My professors know me very well and care about what I do with my life. I am majoring in Applied Mathematics and minoring in Homeland Security, because I want a job out of college. If you're set on being an art major, so be it...VCU is your school, but be prepared to get scrutinized for choosing to major in art. The only students that are capable of having intellectual conversations are in the School of Government and the Engineering/Science/Med. students. Don't ask an art, education, fashion, music, or mass communications (absolutely) student because you'll just get frustrated.


The academics are great. There are a lot of lecture classes and also small classes. It is easier to get to know your classmates and professors in a small class. I am in the Liberal Studies for Early and Elementary Education program, so most of my classes are specific to the LSEE major. They are smaller classes and we get to really know each other.


VCU enters you into the school easy and gradually expects more of you with the assistance of teachers. Really good resources to help your transition and keep you doing well.


Everything at VCU is exactly what you make of it. You will reap exactly what you sow. If you attend every class, attend office hours, and study hard, you will pass the class with ease and you will be able to go back to that professor in 3 years for a recommendation letter. If you skip classes and do the bare minimum to pass your class, your grades will be mediocre. The most challenging and unique class I am taking right now is Formal Logic. We are learning how to put philosophical arguments into prepositional calculus to test their validity, or to check the inferences. Students are very competitive, but you will see some apathetic slackers every now and then. Education is geared toward learning, however, VCU has a career center that you can visit up to a year after you graduate that will do free resume reviews and mock interviews to help you find a job after graduation.


The reason we all attend college is definitely for a degree and so academics is at the forefront and should be for each student. VCU is a school that offers such a wide variety of degree programs ranging from theater and music to degrees in medicine and foreign languages. The spectrum is so wide. The school of engineering within VCU is not that large and so it's quite easy for professors to know who you are. My favorite classes have definitely been Cell Biology and Survey of West African History. For me cell biology was great because you could feel the enthusiasm from the professor and she was so relatable and so easy to talk to and I believe that she was a great teacher. Survey of West African history was great, again the Professor was awesome and he made the subject so understandable. The information we gained from the class was tremendous but it was the kind of knowledge that you would always retain and never let slip into your distant memory. The library on campus is always packed and so you can tell that students do take their classes seriously and they do study. However, there is a dire need for more library space or possibly a new library on campus. Nevertheless I find that students find so many different places to study whether its in the library, I'm the corner of an academic building or on the grass under a tree on a nice day. I believe that depending on which classes you take there is class participation. VCU's degree requirements are different for each major but for specifically for my major I can agree that the requirements were fitting, I would only add that we should have been required to do an internship. VCU's academic environment is one that is fitting for a student who is focused and wants to get the best education possible while being at a school that provides for your needs and takes your suggestions into serious considerations for constant improvement. Also VCU's career center and career fairs ensure that students have opportunities outside of school and when they graduate so their concern is placed on you while your there and ensuring that you also leave well.


As an art student here, I couldn't be happier. The resources and faculty are outstanding and I have been pushed well beyond my comfort zone as an artist, and have benefitted immensely as a result. My fellow students are definitely open-minded. There are so many creative kids and great ideas here, it's nothing less than inspiring. Not a day goes by that I'm not amazed by something, whether that be artistic or not. Actual academic life here is... well, quite honestly, I wouldn't really know. I've only had to take the *very* basics when it comes to actually academic classes, like general education classes such as Bio 101, etc. I really am not qualified to comment on the academics here, and I don't think it's fair for me to remark on what is essentially just hearsay. I've heard a lot of complaints from people who are not enrolled in art/medical majors, but also some good things as well. Just like in all other universities, there are very good and very bad professors. The further you get into your education, usually the better and more considerate the professors become.


I like my classes for the most part. I enjoyed my large classes, which were 200 to 400 people but as my gen. ed. classes got done with, my classes got a lot smaller, anywhere from 15 to 30 but also some that are 60 or 70 people. I have good relationships with a good amount of my professors that i would feel comfortable emailing about something, asking them for help or support, or going to talk to in person about another class or a recommendation, or even just to say hi, even though i dont have them in class anymore.


With all the fun and games at VCU, there are always students studying and hitting the books. With dozens of academic buildings and several libraries, VCU students spend a vast amount of their time researching material and taking notes for their classes. There are an infinite amount of tools and resources available to students and facility. All buildings are equipment with state of the art computers, science labs, foreign language labs, libraries, and much more. VCU is just the right size, with classes ranging from 25 to 200 students. Teachers are friendly and often take the time to get to know their students individually. No matter what your field of study is, VCU gives you the education to excel to a professional level and meet your longtime goals of academic success.


100 and 200 level classes are lecture halls, with anywhere from 100-500 students. once you get more focused on your major, the classes get smaller, which is good.


It was okay. I took mostly large classes, so there wasnt bonding between students and teachers and so forth. I didn't really enjoy the way the professors taught in some on my classes. I liked the requirements, there werent many, we had more freedom to do and take what we wanted.


I've only been here for 2 semesters and I have only had awesome professors. I had a man named Dr.Wood for my international social justice class and that was an amazing class! He was so fun and told great stories. It really did open my eyes to different issues. Honestly, I have been lucky with professors. They have been great and a few of them do know my name and i have had conversations with them out of class. My GPA after my freshman year was a 3.9 and that's because I studied almost everyday. It really is important to study. I love my major and all the classes i have taken so far. I'm honestly satisfied with the academics at VCU. There is always help available is you are doing poorly in a class. There is free tutoring and a writing center on campus.


I expect to try to speak to my professors outside of class.


Have not started classes yet.


Attendance was always taken & if I missed more than three classes, my final grade dropped a letter. They're not kidding. But some teachers are flexible. I was fortunate enough to have an english teacher who understood how much stress I was going through. She knew that I didn't have to just take basic classes but had to spend most of my free time working on sets inside the theatre. She understood how draining it could be & helped me so much along the way so I could pass. In small classrooms, the teachers do care that you pass & I know my acedemic advisor was amazing! She would come to our shows & a lot of times, she would be outside, smoking a cigarette & you could just sit with her & talk about anything. I've spent a few times talking about boys & piercings with her but I also got great acedemic advice from her as well as the issue of trying to fit into the scenic shop with the boys while still being a girly girl. My professors & advisors this year were simply AMAZING!


In most classes, attendance could play a big role in your grade. Students have these things called clickers that teachers use to interact with students by asking questions about the topic being studied. Also, doing assigned work on blackboard and staying informed about what's due when will save your grade because most assignments can't be handed in past the due date. One of the hardest classes i had to take was anatomy just because there was so much to study in a short amount of time and at first, it was hard finding a balance between anatomy class and my other classes. It's really about figuring out a way to have time for all your classes.


The classes, at least that i am in, are normally small (art student) and the teachers do get to know you well. There are plenty of students that will sit a debate topics of life, religion, and politics, and there are students who could care less nonetheless discuss any of those topics. The teachers and students in the art school have a little bit closer relationship than other departments since we become more so peers and end up working together professionally either while the students are still in school or when we get out.


Great academics and the school offers numerous programs to assist in the learning process. Professors encourage class discussions and are open minded about discussing things not on the syllabus. The students are all very helpful with each other and enjoy working on assignments together. As a mass communication major I really enjoy the program that VCU has. Its very hands on and you get to experience things similar to what you study.


My major is Music Education. I have not started school yet, but during my audition I had to take placement tests for the classes I was to take in the fall. I was very encouraged by their desire for precision while testing their students. They were not willing to put you in a level of class that they knew you wouldn't be comfortable in. My old high school teacher, Ms. Rebecca Tyree, is a professor in the VCU music department and I have always appreciated her hard work and enthusiastic spirit. She has always guided me in the right direction and I always thought, if this one professor can be so caring and loving, I know that this entire community of professors could be nothing but outstanding people!


In most of my classes professors knew students names. Most classes this was not surprising because i maybe had 20 other students in my class. In my art history class my professor would call on people and actually knew some of the students names. This was a surprise for me because there was over 100 students in it. My first year at VCU was spent in what VCU calls Art Foundations (AFO). It is required for all art students and consists of 4 studio classes: Drawing studio, Surface Research, Time studio, and Space Research. These classes required a lot of dedication. They are designed to push us as artists and make us think in ways we are not used to. At the end of this first year we apply for a major in the art department. I was accepted into Interior Design, a program strongly geared towards providing students with the knowledge we will need in the professional world.


VCU is a pretty big school, you have to make yourself known to your professors. Things like checking on your grades and asking your professors about other things can build a relationship woth your professor that can help you in the future. Some classes are lage lecture classes like your 101's and those kind of basic classes but as you start getting into your major the classes get smaller.


Go to ASAP. College has it quirks just like high school did, but a major difference is you can do background work. Look at what other students said about that teacher and its not a bad idea to google them. My history class never would have happened freshmen first semester if I had only read the teacher's page. When you pick your classes maker sure you see what it entails. Is it writing intensive or just lecture style? Look at the amount of kids in the class when you are first allowed to pick classes. The more people in their, the more likely the class is in high demand. If you know what type of learning style all this background work will let you pick classes/teachers match you.


I loved most all of my teachers this past year in AFO. It's pretty personal and real.


In order for Professors to know your name, you need to put yourself out there. Just be yourself and show them that you are interested in what they are teaching you. One of the greatest ways to go the most out of your education is to make yourself known and ask questions. In a lecture hall of 200 students, it may be hard so office hours are great. It is also important to use their availability to speak to them regarding topics, hw, tests, future job opportunities and perhaps conduct some informational interviewing of them. They are there to teach you and help you. Accept it and use it! My favorite classes are ones where you are forced to think about things such as Interpersonal Relations and Human Sexuality. My minor is also Criminal Justice so crime scene investigation is also interesting. I would say that the students who take their education seriously study about a ratio of 1 hour of class time is equal to 2 or 3 hours of studying outside of class. In class participation is necessary in my opinion to succeed in college and it is often times a part of your final grade in a class. VCU students have intellectual conversations outside of class whether it be with friends, study buddys, organizations on campus, with faculty, etc. I think college has a lot to do with asking questions and finding out your own answers through class, conversations, and life experiences. As for study hours, it depends entirely on the class, whether you are good at it or not, and whether you are really giving 110{4a082faed443b016e84c6ea63012b481c58f64867aa2dc62fff66e22ad7dff6c}. At every school you are going to have students who are there to learn anything and everything they can as well as thos students who are there and don't really care. I would consider myself to be very competitive and a majority of my classmates to be semi-competitive. The most unique class that I have taken would have to be Human Sexuality. It was just so interesting and fun to learn about. I would def recommend it for sure. My major is Psychology with a minor concentration in Criminal Justice. It is very different from other majors because it is considered a science yet it is a social one. You find problems and nothing ever has a definite answer. Every situation is different therefore every solution will be different. I feel that VCU's academic requirements are at the right level for this institution. It is challenging yet do-able. Perfect balance I believe. I would say that the education at VCU is geared towards getting a job as well as learning for its own sake. You are at college to learn about yourself and what you may want to pursue as a career later on down the road. I think that both of those elements are important to learn and experience throughout school.


I have not had a single professor that I did not like (but I have only been here a couple semesters). Great school for liberal arts. I have spent time with a couple professors outside of class.


I LOVE MY ACADEMICS! I love pursuing my major, and connecting it to my life and the people around me. It is a truly lost art to be able to relate totally different realms of the world to each other... I feel its a calling we all experience when we experience the right academics. VCU definitely allows that to happen, if not encourage it!


I am really happy about with the program for my major. One of the most frequent complaints is that their scheduling tires them out. I am glad to be at VCU. It is one of the top schools for social work. I don't send time with professors outside of class. My VCU education is geared towards getting a job. I plan to go all the way to get my Masters.


I am a double-major. Essentially, I will be receiving a Bachelor of the Arts in Theater and a Bachelor of the Sciences in Psychology at the end of my stay at VCU. Therefore, the academic life is integral to my success. But this is not the case with just double-majors or even academic-oriented majors. The academic life at VCU is integral to the completion of every offered degree. The first few years of my college-life are focused on my Bachelor of the Arts in Theater degree. This may seem simple enough. (Take acting classes. Learn how to project.) But this degree, just like all of those offered, depends just as much on my academic classes as my arts classes. If I do not receive a certain GPA every year, I am put on Academic Probation and cannot audition for any departmental productions. My academic performance is as important as my performance on stage. This reflects a great aspect of VCU's academic requirements. Each student is expected to succeed in more than just his or her chosen department. Professors here are extremely supportive of students. All of the professors you encounter here are determined to help you succeed. And each program is specifically designed to prepare you for your future. It's not just about completing classes and earning credits and receiving a degree. All VCU programs offer the knowledge, preparation, and skill to ensure each graduate's success and employment after college.


Some of the classes are very large in size. The best class to take is Human Sexuality, although Daphne Rankin no longer teaches it. VCU has relatively low graduate school standards for admission (2.75 GPA from undergrad) but seems to be well respected in the academic community.


Focused Inquiry and Biology classes are my favorites. I loved them,my professors were awesome also. Academic requirements are just in the right position,no more and no less. Class participation is common and Bioinformatics rocks!! Dr.Hartman from International Education office thinks that Bioinformaticans will rule the world in 10 years :) After graduating VCU,your job will be waiting for you!


Some classes consider more participation then others. Some you just listen to the professor and try to remember atleast 10{4a082faed443b016e84c6ea63012b481c58f64867aa2dc62fff66e22ad7dff6c} of what they said. I have been going here for two years and I enjoyed all the different experiences I faced with all my classes.


Gen ed classes are generally large, so in the beginning things can be a little impersonal and you don't get a lot of one on one or getting to know your professors. This can be a good or a bad thing. If its important to you, its not hard to meet with the prof at office hours. I have yet to have a teacher that was not willing to help the students. And, once you start to get into your major classes are a lot smaller and you get to know the professors pretty well.


Once, I progressed into my major, I found that all of my professors knew my name. I was shy during my first 2 years at VCU, but once I became used to the environment, I learned to speak up in class and let my teachers know who I am, even during the huge lecture classes in Temple. My favorite class was a creative writing class with Jamie Feuglin (sp?). I think students study when necessary. Yes, class participation is common, but usually the same students will participate everyday while the ones who don't, never do. The students are not too competitive from what I've witnessed. The most unique class I had was British poetry class with Joshua Eckhardt. The English department was always helpful with anything I needed. I spent time outisde of class with my professors when I needed assistance, which was not too frequently. I did find almost every professor very accessible. the education at VCU is geared toward both getting a job and education in general.


The professors that I like know my name because I make an effort for them to do so. My favourite classes have been with my favourite professors, Dr. Zyzniewski, Dr. Condit and Prof. Cutchin. My least favourite classes involve teachers who don't actually know what they're talking about and do not listen to students' voices. I do not study often, I cram. Class participation in my classes is usually mandatory. Women Studies students always end up discussing classes after it's over, but for ofther majors this does not always happen. Students are not really competitive. The most unique class I've taken is Psychology of Religion. The Womens' Studiest Department is (with the exception of a few teachers) absolutely amazing and the students are wonderful. I do spend time with those teachers outside. In my other major, Psychology, the teachers are hit or miss and you don't always see them after class, but the wonderful ones are available for you if you need them. VCU requirements are not difficult. The education is geared toward getting a job for certain fields, but others seem scattered.


i know my professors' names...... my favorite class is chemistry, i have mrs kulkarni. its so interesting and different than everything else, and my professor is amazing, she loves the subject and her students......i study a lot. being premed is very competative. other students study a good amount, and art students are always in their studios. prehealth kids live in the library and art kids live in their studios.....class participation usually depends on the course, some classes are based on it and some classes only the teacher speaks........ vcu students love to debate and have in depth, intellectual conversations. everyone has such different perspectives. ive learned a lot from listening to and questioning people. but vcu students also like to chill and just joke eachother..... students are very competative, especially with acedemics......i am a biology and mathematics major with a minor in chemistry. i get to meet a lot of people i wouldnt normally know outside of that environment, none of my friends that i normally hangout with are in the science field. i really like the biology and chemistry department, everyone there wants to make the world a better place, they want to make their impact in the world by discovering and teaching. i spend some time outside of class with professors, but mostly with TAs and SI leaders (teachers have students who have already taken the course lead study groups)......learning to learn.


Most of my professors do know my name. The class sizes at VCU for upper level classes are very good. They aren't so small that students don't participate, but they aren't so large that some students can't participate. My favorite class at VCU was probably my intermediate Microeconomics class, I can't tell you why I loved that class so much but I did. I think main;y it was because of the professor who just almost made class full of energy and made the topics that we covered really interesting somehow. The most unique class I've ever take at VCU I am currently enrolled in now. It's called "Biodiversity and Ecological Economics." It's totally different from what I expected it to be, but I really enjoy it. Its a really great class where we learn a lot of really interesting things. Not to mention, its taught by the same professor who taught my intermediate Microeconomics class, which makes it that much better.


My favorite class is Ethics and Applications with Dr. Carrey. I find that for the most part, the professors I have had are very helpful and understanding (which I was not expecting, having been taught in high school that no college professor would care a lick about me). I do not enjoy the very large lecture classes, however, because I feel as though I do not matter in them and I do not always feel motivated to attend, feeling that I will not be missed.


No. Can't think of a favorite class. Econ and management science blows chunks. students participate quite enough. we hold intellectual conversations and also real dumb ones too. very competitive at least I know I am. I think I'm learning the proper stuff at VCU for getting a job and just learning. Although, more real life stuff would be nice.


I think it depends on the size of the classroom..if its a lecture of 200+ students i doubt the professor will know my name unless i have spoken to them personally. My favorite class as of now is probably bacteriology. Least favorite now would be cell biology. I think a good majority of students study if not a little everyday at least like 3 times a week because the library is always packed it seems. Class participation is pretty common in all classes but the way its done can differ. Im sure that VCU students have intellectual conversations outside of class..ive heard students talk and its def. not about dumb stuff some of the time. Students are competitive i think maybe between friends or people they know in class. My major is biology and its a pretty intense major i think overall and the department here is pretty nice to students and they offer a wide variety of classes. I dont really spend time outside of class with professors unless i have to see them for questions about something but i mostly email professors. I think VCU's academic requirements are pretty standard compared to other schools around the nation. I think the education offered at VCU is geared towards learning and becoming knowledgable but at the same time preparing you for the future and whatever career you are thinking of.


some professors do, i go to office hours only when i need help so thats why favorite class: mgmt 323 (business law) my professor really made a boring subject interesting through real life applications least fave: info 360 (something computer) i hated having to memorize crap about the inside of a computer... required students study: the busiest times in the library is during midterms and finals. good luck getting a table let alone one near an electrical outlet. class participation... depends on the class. if the professor is fabulous at getting feedback and is personable then yes intellectual conversations outside of class: of course. learning is all the time right? students competitive? sure... most unique class: again business law... you wouldnt think it but i would take it again with that professor. that was a fab class im a marketing major in the school of business. couldnt tell you about the department like the dean's name... all i know is we have a new building and the dean's office is well hidden. they dont really say congrats on being a business major here is everything you need to know about the dept... time spent with professors outside of class.... office hours maybe one hour every two weeks... so no. academic requirements... they could be a little stricter. we will never be at the same level as some other state schools if we dont raise our standards. but then again vcu is all about opportunity right? business school education is about getting a job. could tell you about anything else.


Some of my professors know my name Donahue's Mass Comm 101 RULES! He's awesome Least favorite = Biology. Science is awful. Students are noncompetitive in most arenas The most unique was Donahue's because of the break out classes- all of it was amazing I don't know many professors outside class Focused Inquiry is the biggest waste of time if you already took AP English of any kind The education of VCU is definitely on the "five year program"- nobody is in a rush to help you graduate, they want to milk it for all its worth. But if you're forceful you can get a lot out of your education.


I usually take the time to get to know my professors. That helps out in the long run because you can then go to them for help with a study question, or to get assistance in understanding some new concept you are covering. My favorite classes are the ones that relate to my major. I love Political Science. My least favorite class would be the english class they require us to take. They recently overhauled the curriculum and completely changed the freshman english classes, and I don't particularly like it. That varies based on the person, just like it does at every single college. But the majority of students study for a couple of hours a day. And participating in class is a varied thing too. Some classes don't call for much pariticipation, but there are usually plenty of people interested enough to participate. I will talk to professors outside of class usually and visit them during their office hours.