Academics

Location
Bowling Green, KY
Undergrads
14,315
Tuition (in-state)
$22,248 ($8,722)
Admission Difficulty
Very Easy
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Reviews

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3 College Senior

Academics: Freshmen courses appear to be easy, except those that are in place to weed individuals out of certain major tracks.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Senior

Academics: Best program in the area - excellent professors, demanding standards.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Academics: They have the only honors college in Kentucky.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Academics: Nursing is one of the more difficult majors at WKU. It is difficult to get into and also difficult to graduate from. The workload is very stressful as a lot is expected of you in this program. Recently a new Nursing School was built thanks to the Medical Center and the facility is wonderful. There are brand new beds and mannequins to practice on, new computers, projectors, supplies, etc... that all make nursing school easier. With exam rooms and hospital beds we are able to practice as if we are in a real clinical setting, which makes it much easier when we actually get to a clinical setting. The faculty are grat, they all know exactly what they're doing and are so happy to be there to help us become nurses. They open labs on weekends if we feel like we need extra help, they stay after hours to let us practice, and they go out of their way to help us succeed.

4 College Junior

Academics: Overall the professors are great, and by word of mouth students know which ones to take and which ones to avoid. Registering for classes is simple but also frustrating. Registration begins a 5am each day for each group of students and you are able to see which classes are filled or how many seats are remaining in a class. The frustrating thing is that there arent enough classes or seats for some areas. Anatomy and Physiology for example, there is only 1-2 sections available while hundreds of students need the course to apply for their program. When the class fills up no more students are allowed to register which means they have to wait another semester to try again, thus pushing back their ability to apply to their program, thus requiring them to be enrolled for more than 4 years. Its frustrating when students who will never be accepted into their program are allowed to take these classes and prevent others from taking them. It took me 3 semesters to register for an anatomy class, which pushed me back that many semesters as well so now I'm at WKU longer than planned because I couldnt get a class I needed for my program. Popular study areas include Nursing, Dental Hygiene, Marketing/PR, Journalism, and Broadcasting.

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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 102nd
    Best Online Course Options
  • 187th
    Most Manageable Workloads
  • 293rd
    Best Course Variety
  • 368th
    Most Flexible Curriculums
  • 407th
    Best Technology in the Classroom

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Although WKU is not a school known for outstanding academics, the University has a variety of subjects to offer. The most notable program is the School of Journalism and Broadcasting, which has won many awards. Though the other programs aren't as well known, students are in general very satisfied with the quality of education they are receiving. Western students are usually surprised by the thoroughness of the general education requirements upon arrival. WKU requires 44 hours of general education to graduate. Don't let that scare you off, though; most of these classes are pretty easy, and a working knowledge of multiple subject areas is definitely desirable in any job market.

One area that WKU really shines in is professors, with tons of amazing instructors in every discipline. Students are taught by a professor, not a graduate student. There are, of course, some really strict professors, but in general, though, the professors are excited about their subject and their students, and more than willing to help students out if they need it. The class sizes are usually very small, which gives students more chances to interact with other students and the professor. There are tons of opportunities, like research positions and internships in any area of study (some majors and minors even require an internship to graduate), and many professors take students to conferences in their disciplines. The Honors College is also an excellent option. WKU has the first official Honors College in the state, and incoming students in the Honors College are in the top 6 percent of ACT and SAT scores in the nation. Honors classes have even smaller class sizes (average 19) and seek to enhance the learning experience with lots of discussion and hands-on experience. The option to create a thesis at the end of your college career can present you with a challenge and set you apart from the rest of the pack. 

Facts & Statistics

Student-Faculty Ratio
19:1
Full-Time Instructional Faculty
769
Part-Time Instructional Faculty
429
Total FT Faculty
771
Faculty with Terminal Degree
70%
Average Faculty Salary
$61,455
Full-Time Retention Rate
71%
Part-Time Retention Rate
29%
Transfer-Out Rate
31%
Graduation Rate
43%
Programs/Majors Offered
131
Academic/Career Counseling?
Yes
Remedial Services?
Yes
Class Sizes
  • Fewer than 20 students: 41%
  • 20 to 49 students: 53%
  • 50 or more students: 6%
Instructional Programs
Occupational: Yes
Academic: Yes
Continuing Professional: Yes
Recreational/Avocational: Yes
Adult Basic Remedial: Yes
Secondary (High School): Yes
Special Credit Opportunities
Advanced Placement (AP) Credits: Yes
Dual Credit: Yes
Life Experience Credits: No
Undergraduate Schools/Divisions
  • College of Education and Behavioral Sciences
  • College of Health and Human Services
  • Gordon Ford College of Business
  • Honors College
  • Ogden College of Science & Engineering
  • Potter College of Arts & Letters
  • University College
Degrees Awarded
  • Associate degree
  • Bachelor's degree
  • Certificate
  • Master's degree
  • Other
  • Post-bachelor's certificate
  • Post-master's certificate
Most Popular Majors
  • Business Administration and Management: 2%
  • Elementary Education: 3%
  • General Studies: 4%
  • Registered Nursing (RN): 3%
Graduation Requirements
  • Arts/fine arts
  • English (including composition)
  • Foreign languages
  • Humanities
  • Mathematics
  • Sciences (biological or physical)
  • Social science
Special Study Options
  • Study abroad
  • Teacher certification (below the postsecondary level)
Other Academic Offerings
  • Cooperative education program
  • Double major
  • Dual enrollment
  • English as a Second Language (ESL)
  • Exchange student program (domestic)
  • Honors program
  • Independent study
  • Internships
Online Courses
Online courses are generally available in any area where it is practical. Chemistry classes online wouldn't work so well, but writing, psychology, business, art appreciation, and family studies work just fine and are generally easy to use. They involve things such as discussion board postings and recorded lectures that are viewable on a computer. Professors are available through e-mail or during office hours just like a normal class. However, most people still prefer the structure and interaction of a face-to-face class.
Best Places to Study
  • Library, floors five through nine
  • Outside!
  • Third floor of Downing University Center
Tips to Succeed
  • Don't spread yourself too thin. Getting involved is great, but you need to be able to say "no" to things and prioritize so your life doesn't get too crazy.
  • Get involved. College will be so much more fun if you are doing lots of things. Play intramural sports, join a club or professional organization, audition for a play. Whatever you are into, there is probably a club or organization here that you can join, and you will definitely be glad you did.
  • Learn time management! You are in control of all of your time now, and you are the one who has to make sure that you get everything done. There is no one there to tell you to be home at a certain time, or to wake you up in the morning and make you go to school. You have to be responsible for yourself and make sure that you aren't just playing around.

Student Polls

How strongly do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements?    Based on 59 responses

Strongly disagree
Strongly agree
  • The academic advisers are helpful.
  • It is easy to get the classes you want.
  • Grading is generally consistent and fair.
  • There are a variety of interesting courses to take.
  • Students are encouraged to explore a wide range of courses and topics.
  • My Gen-Ed requirements are worthwhile and meaningful.
  • The workload is easy to manage.
  • There are plenty of good online course options.
  • Teaching assistants (TAs) are used effectively.
  • The course scheduling/registration process is efficient and student-friendly.
  • Classrooms/labs are up-to-date and incorporate new technologies effectively.

How strongly do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements regarding the professors at this school?    Based on 59 responses

Strongly disagree
Strongly agree
  • Professors are approachable and helpful when needed
  • Professors are engaging and easy to understand.
  • Professors are experts in their field.
  • Professors are passionate about the topics they teach.
  • Professors care about their students' success.
  • Professors put a lot of effort into teaching their classes.
  • Professors use teaching assistants (TAs) effectively.

Who are the most notable alumni from this school?    Based on 9 responses

  • 33% John Carpenter - film director
  • 20% Duncan Hines - food critic and cookbook author
  • 20% Kenny Perry - professional golfer
  • 13% Michael Rosenbaum - actor
  • 13% Gary Ransdell
  • 0% Matt Long - actor

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