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4 College Freshman

Academics: The professors are usually excellent. I had one that I did not like my freshman year. He taught his subject well, but the class was hard and he was not super friendly. Registration is easy after the first time. The first time I did not really know what I was doing, and it was hard to get the classes I wanted at first, but I was able to get them before the semester began. The workload was a lot, but if you stay focused, use the library, and go to class it is not terrible.

3 College Freshman

Academics: Academics are fairly good depending on the major chosen, there is many hard classes but some easy ones as well.

5 College Freshman

Academics: The academics here are great and are a much bigger focus than many people tend to think.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Academics: Perfection from the part of professors, workload is normal, lots of study options and an amazing curriculum

5 College Freshman

Academics: So many options, plenty of classes to choose from, and when classes are filled, staff will jump hurdles to try to open spaces

2 people found this useful Report

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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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Marine biology and the sciences tend to be the academic areas a lot of prospective students associate with "UNC by the Sea." However, UNCW is so much more, providing and promoting such a variety of academic areas and majors. Prospective students or parents soon realize and appreciate the vast depth and care the University possesses, which makes UNCW itself the focus rather than its proximity to the ocean. Besides strong areas in biology, marine biology, chemistry, oceanography, and environmental science, UNCW's academic strengths also lie in the majors of nursing, business, education, communication studies, and computer science. Top-notch programs are also well-established in the areas of creative writing, film studies, and culturally stimulating areas such as theater, music, and art. The reputation for great science programs still stands, but other academic interests maintain strong reputations, too.

Hands-on, interactive styles of learning are supported by professors, as well as by the amazing facilities UNCW provides for its students. Class sizes are a thing of pride at UNCW, as they support great professor-student interaction. Average class sizes are around 21 students. There are, of course, some basic studies classes that a lot of students take, such as "Business 105" or a basic biology class, which are larger and more lecture-based. Still, these classes are only around 150 or fewer students, and once a student enters a specific major, and really after freshman year, the classes are such great sizes. UNCW professors are experts in their respected fields, and most conduct individual research and write articles throughout the year to keep that respected status. Office hours are mandatory for all professors. Throughout their entire college career, students are assigned advisers that ensure student success. UNCW professors and staff are truly there for the students.

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
Transfer-Out Rate
Graduation Rate
Programs/Majors Offered
Academic/Career Counseling?
Remedial Services?
Class Sizes
  • Fewer than 20 students: 31%
  • 20 to 49 students: 62%
  • 50 or more students: 7%
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: No
Undergraduate Schools/Divisions
  • Cameron School of Business
  • College of Arts and Sciences
  • College of Health and Human Services
  • Watson College of Education
Degrees Awarded
  • Bachelor's degree
  • Doctorate - Research/scholarship
  • Master's degree
  • Post-bachelor's certificate
  • Post-master's certificate
Most Popular Majors
  • Business Administration and Management: 8%
  • Elementary Education: 3%
  • Psychology: 4%
  • Speech Communication and Rhetoric: 3%
Graduation Requirements
  • Arts/fine arts
  • English (including composition)
  • Foreign languages
  • History
  • Humanities
  • Mathematics
  • Philosophy
  • Sciences (biological or physical)
  • Social science
Special Study Options
  • Study abroad
  • Teacher certification (below the postsecondary level)
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
Online Courses
A wide array of online courses are offered at UNCW in a wide variety of subject areas. Psychology, English, and criminology are just a few of the example subject areas. A student really just has to search the online course catalog to find when/what classes are offered. Online courses have no on-campus meeting time. Fully online courses may have required times for students to be online for discussions or students may meet in a virtual classroom, though. Blended courses involve both online involvement as well as some on-campus meeting times. Summer, fall, and spring online options are available. Overall, professors are very accessible in any online course or program.
Best Places to Study
  • Campus Commons when the weather is nice, the lovely area in the center of campus
  • Fisher Student Center
  • Randall Library
  • Study rooms in all of the residence halls and upperclassman apartments are separate rooms set aside just for the purpose of studying.
Tips to Succeed
  • Don't be afraid to ask for help or to ask questions. The professors at UNCW are more than willing to meet with you, email you back, and make an appointment with you. Professor-student relationships are very prevalent in UNCW classes, so make it happen!
  • Don't skip class. Even if there's no attendance policy, going makes all the difference. Especially don't skip class to go to the beach—you live close enough that you can go after class.
  • If you're extremely passionate about a certain class or subject area, ask those professors about their research/expertise in the field. This can deepen that professor-student relationship and will show initiative, possibly resulting in opportunities not otherwise known about.
  • Make the most of your time at UNCW; try to accomplish something new and try something different each year. Make a list of goals you want to accomplish and start checking them off the list! UNCW gives students so many tools and opportunities, but it's up to the student to take advantage of them! Get involved and really strive to go above and beyond.
  • Set priorities when studying—plan ahead and start papers ahead of time. Don't start a six-page paper due the next day!
Did You Know?
  • Marine biology was the first Ph.D. offered at UNCW.
  • UNCW's creative writing program has its own publishing laboratory. Lookout Books is the literary book imprint of the creative writing department, and its inaugural book "Binocular Vision" won the National Book Critics Circle Award in 2012.
  • There are 10 undergraduate concentrations in the Cameron School of Business, ranging from entrepreneurship to international business.

Student Polls

How strongly do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements?    Based on 97 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 55 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 54 responses

  • 33% This was my dream school.
  • 52% This was one of my top choices.
  • 15% This was a school I settled for (safety school).



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