Centenary is smallâ€”very small. Most of the classes have around 15 students. Classes tend to be more discussion-oriented than lecture, which makes them much more interesting. While small, intimate classes are fun for discussion and give you a great opportunity to get to know your professor, there are a few drawbacks. For one, if you miss a class, the teacher will notice. Also, if you haven't read, shrinking down in your seat and staring at your open book will not make you disappear.
The academic atmosphere is not overly competitive. Students are more into helping each other out than fighting for a seat at the head of the class. That being said, the top students know that succeeding at Centenary means working hard and basically sucking up to the teachers in your field. Almost all the classes are taught by professors, even the introductory courses. Though the professors make themselves available, they are extremely busy. Some are impossible to track down unless you know their schedule and how to corner them. The interaction between students and teachers is casual, especially with the younger faculty members. One major drawback of a small college is that the course schedule is less diverse than what you'd see at a big university. Because all the professors are teaching introductory courses, the upper-level classes are often offered every other year. Planning ahead is a must when it comes to scheduling. Also, an independent study with a professor in your field is a good way to study specific topics that aren't offered in the course schedule.