Academics

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Academics

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4 College Sophomore

Academics: The Gen Ed program can be extensive and very boring, but most teachers are very helpful and always available for extra help outside the classroom.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Academics: I love being in the college of business, but showker hall could use some reconstruction

3 College Sophomore

Academics: Their similar to every other school but you need to take gen eds seriously, you'll wish you had the gpa boost later on

3 College Sophomore

Academics: I have met many people who have moved out of my major but, there are a lot of options within the college of business that I can fall back on, so I'm not worried.

5 College Sophomore

Academics: There is a wide variety of classes offered, all of which present a new challenge.

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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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At JMU, what you see is precisely what you get—a quality education. Professors give you the typical syllabus explaining their office hours in detail, and students should take advantage of the opportunity to bond with professors and their assistants. Most professors are regarded as extremely approachable and dedicated. It's easy to make an appointment with a prof, and the rewards (improved grades, happy parents) are sweet. At JMU, it's not easy to slack off and squeak through with a decent grade.

JMU gives a small-school feel in the midst of a large campus. However, some large underclassman gen-eds might make you feel a little lost among more than 200 students. As classes become more specialized, though, the teacher-student ratio narrows. With more than 80 academic programs, you’ll be sure to find something that interests you as a major. Many programs offer a broad spectrum of real world applications, and concentrations can help tailor a major to students’ personal interests. As you dig more into each major, you’ll find internships and jobs a little more accessible than before.

Facts & Statistics

Student-Faculty Ratio
16:1
Full-Time Instructional Faculty
924
Part-Time Instructional Faculty
335
Total FT Faculty
924
Faculty with Terminal Degree
79%
Average Faculty Salary
$68,736
Full-Time Retention Rate
91%
Part-Time Retention Rate
100%
Transfer-Out Rate
8%
Graduation Rate
80%
Programs/Majors Offered
64
Academic/Career Counseling?
Yes
Remedial Services?
No
Class Sizes
  • Fewer than 20 students: 31%
  • 20 to 49 students: 56%
  • 50 or more students: 12%
Instructional Programs
Occupational: No
Academic: Yes
Continuing Professional: No
Recreational/Avocational: No
Adult Basic Remedial: No
Secondary (High School): No
Special Credit Opportunities
Advanced Placement (AP) Credits: Yes
Dual Credit: Yes
Life Experience Credits: Yes
Undergraduate Schools/Divisions
  • College of Arts & Letters
  • College of Business
  • College of Education
  • College of Health & Behavioral Studies
  • College of Integrated Science & Technology
  • College of Science & Mathematics
  • College of Visual & Performing Arts
Degrees Awarded
  • Bachelor's degree
  • Master's degree
  • Post-master's certificate
  • Doctorate – Research/scholarship
  • Doctorate – Professional practice
Most Popular Majors
  • Community Health Services and Counseling: 3%
  • Foundations of Education: 3%
  • Health, Outdoor, and Physical Education: 3%
  • Speech Communication and Rhetoric: 4%
Graduation Requirements
  • Arts/fine arts
  • Communication and critical thinking
  • Computer literacy
  • English (including composition)
  • History
  • Mathematics
  • Sciences (biological or physical)
  • Social science
  • Wellness
Special Study Options
  • Study abroad
  • Teacher certification (below the postsecondary level)
Other Academic Offerings
  • Accelerated program
  • Continuing education
  • Double major
  • Dual enrollment
  • English as a Second Language (ESL)
  • Honors program
  • Independent study
  • Internships
Best Places to Study
  • Carrier Library
  • East Campus Library
  • Hillcrest House (for Honors kids)
  • The Quad (in sunny weather)
  • Starbucks
  • Taylor Down Under (TDU)
Tips to Succeed
  • Allow at least half an hour before class to find a parking spot.
  • Always dispute test questions and bad grades.
  • Be involved on campus in clubs and organizations.
  • Brush elbows with the townies; they are wonderful, friendly people.
  • Check your e-mail, Blackboard, and the JMU Web site at least once a day.
  • Do your homework.
  • Don't give in to caffeine and an all-nighter; get enough sleep the night before a final or midterm.
  • Get involved in dorm life; if possible, spend two years on campus.
  • Get to know your professors.
  • Go camping and hiking at least once before you graduate.
  • Go to class.
  • Keep in touch with the parental units.
  • Know how to use Microsoft PowerPoint, Word, and Excel.
  • Read the Breeze.
  • See movies when they come to Grafton—it'll save you a few bucks each time.
  • Take a public speaking class. It will pay off by the time you've completed your umpteenth group presentation.
  • Wear shower flip-flops. Seriously, just do it.
Did You Know?
  • James Madison University was originally named State Normal and Industrial School for Women. The first male students stepped upon school grounds in 1946 under President Duke.
  • There is absolutely no excuse for not being involved. JMU has more than 250 recognized clubs and organizations, at least one of which should pique your interest.

Student Polls

How strongly do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements?    Based on 73 responses

Strongly disagree
Strongly agree
  • My Gen-Ed requirements are worthwhile and meaningful.
  • It is easy to get the classes you want.
  • The academic advisers are helpful.
  • 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.
  • 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.

Who are the most notable alumni from this school?    Based on 15 responses

  • 24% Charles Haley - NFL player with 5 Super Bowl rings
  • 24% Phil Vassar - award-winning country musician
  • 15% Dr. Marcia Angell - editor, N.E. Journal of Medicine
  • 12% Gary Clark- former Washington Redskin
  • 9% Curtis Keaton - NFL running back
  • 6% David Gill - successful and well-respected artist
  • 6% Liza Wright
  • 3% Robert "Phoef " Sutton - writer/producer, "Cheers"
  • 3% Delvin Joyce - NFL punt returner

How strongly do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements regarding the professors at this school?    Based on 72 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.

How often do you:    Based on 17 responses

Never
Always
  • Attend class (lectures and recitation)
  • Do all of your homework
  • Do all of your assigned reading
  • Adequately study
  • Take advantage of office hours/study sessions
  • Take notes

Where did this school rank in your list of potential schools when applying?    Based on 16 responses

  • 25% This was my dream school.
  • 62% This was one of my top choices.
  • 12% This was a school I settled for (safety school).

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