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2 College Student

Academics: Lack of transportation creates an environment of disconnect. Public trans is horrible 2 hours on bus to get to a mall

5 College Freshman

Academics: you learn so much ! the academics challenges you

3 College Sophomore

Academics: They make it too difficult for students to get an A in the class.

3 College Sophomore

Academics: The worload for some classes my be alot depending on what your major is. The acedemic program is great offers alot of opportunites.

5 College Freshman

Academics: cant complain, minus my math class i dropped. professor randomly left without telling us and they gave us a guy who is impossible to understand. most of the class dropped.


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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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Academics are a big part of Penn State Altoona, and the majority of professors, advisers, and staff members really want the students here to succeed. If you are not sure about what you want to major in or how to go about getting a job, there are many people at the University who are very helpful in pointing you in the right direction. There is also a great deal of focus on the time management aspect of college. One of the primary problems with incoming freshmen is their lack of time-management skills, but at Penn State Altoona, everyone works hard to see students succeed, and that’s not common at all universities.

The biggest concern when it comes to academics at Penn State Altoona is the need for more majors and bigger departments in certain disciplines. Most majors have a very intimate atmosphere but that may lead, in certain concentrations, to a lack of diversity in the ideology aspect. The best piece of advice is to expand your horizons beyond your major—when you have the chance to take electives, go for classes that will challenge you and give you a view of college and life that you previously did not have.

Facts & Statistics

Student-Faculty Ratio
Full-Time Instructional Faculty
Part-Time Instructional Faculty
Total FT Faculty
Faculty with Terminal Degree
Average Faculty Salary
Full-Time Retention Rate
Part-Time Retention Rate
Graduation Rate
Programs/Majors Offered
Academic/Career Counseling?
Remedial Services?
Class Sizes
  • Fewer than 20 students: 40%
  • 20 to 49 students: 51%
  • 50 or more students: 9%
Instructional Programs
Occupational: Yes
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: No
Undergraduate Schools/Divisions
  • Division of Arts and Humanities
  • Division of Business and Engineering
  • Division of Education, Human Development, and Social Sciences
  • Division of Mathematics and Natural Sciences
Degrees Awarded
  • Associate degree
  • Bachelor's degree
  • Certificate
Most Popular Majors
  • Business/Commerce, General: 7%
  • Criminal Justice and Safety Studies: 5%
  • Electrical and Electronics Engineering: 6%
  • Registered Nursing (RN): 10%
Graduation Requirements
  • Arts/fine arts
  • Computer literacy
  • English (including composition)
  • Foreign languages
  • Humanities
  • Mathematics
  • Sciences (biological or physical)
  • Social science
Special Study Options
  • Study abroad
  • Teacher certification (below the postsecondary level)
  • Weekend/evening college
Other Academic Offerings
  • Accelerated program
  • Cooperative education program
  • Cross-registration
  • Double major
  • Dual enrollment
  • English as a Second Language (ESL)
  • Exchange student program (domestic)
  • Honors program
  • Independent study
  • Internships
  • Liberal arts/career combination
  • Student-designed major
  • Weekend college
Best Places to Study
Eiche Library, especially the study carrels on the first and second floors
Tips to Succeed
  • Be prepared for lots of rain and snow.
  • Develop hobbies to help pass the time.
  • Get involved in campus organizations because they look really good on your résumé and give you something to do other than study.
  • Learn time management, and learn it well.
  • Never underestimate the power of silence. The library will quickly become a resource for quiet.
Did You Know?
The Penn State Altoona campus was once the site of Ivyside Park, a local amusment park in Blair County.

Student Polls

How strongly do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements?    Based on 51 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.

How often do you:    Based on 39 responses

  • 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 39 responses

  • 31% This was my dream school.
  • 62% This was one of my top choices.
  • 8% This was a school I settled for (safety school).
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