According to the school's mission statement, academics at LMU focus on "the education of the whole person." The student-professor relationship encourages a free exchange of ideas. The courses, especially the core curriculum, allow students to customize their education by selecting from a wide array of classes to fulfill requirements in critical and creative arts, history, theology, philosophy, social sciences, and mathematics. LMU's strength is in the strong relationship between students and professors. Most professors respond to students' questions within hours. Students are more than just a social security number; professors usually learn their students' names after the first class, and a few take photos of their students. Also, bad professors stand out, and word travels fast around campus about whom to avoid.
On the negative side, the attendance policy is usually very strict. In most departments, students can miss three classes before their grade drops. Attendance and class participation count for at least 10 percent of the final grade. Additionally, LMU's academics are strangely lacking in some areas. For instance, there is no journalism major, only a journalism certificate. In the next several years, LMU will eliminate its African American studies, women's studies, Asian Pacific studies, and Chicano/Latino studies and combine them all under one major. It is a move that differs from other universities. Although the strict attendance policy can seem intimidating, most classes at LMU are worth attending. Combine an exciting professor with an interesting subject, and you are guaranteed to learn.