Academics

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Academics

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4 College Freshman

Academics: Registration at USC isn't the best, but it's probably slightly better than some other schools. Classes do fill up, especially core classes required for certain majors, but it is rare to miss registration for a class you absolutely need to take in sequence.

4 College Freshman

Academics: Hard classes with pretty good teachers.

5 College Sophomore

Academics: The professors are so engaged and enthusiastic that it is hard not to learn. Because most classes are curved, it is pretty hard to get an A in the class.

3 people found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Academics: I wouldn't have picked any other school academically the trojan family is insane

4 College Freshman

Academics: Professors prepared different courses materials and try to prepare students with useful skills with the course.

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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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The most widely discussed issue that students have about academics at USC is that teaching assistants tend to not be entirely fluent in English, which is due to a fair number of international graduate students. Students who feel uncomfortable talking with TAs usually have to fight for their teachers’ attention during office hours. Although this problem tends to be blown out of proportion, the student-TA language barrier has had debilitating effects ome students' level of interest in a class over the course of a semester.

Another widely discussed issue is the grading curve at the Marshall School of Business. Although most undergraduate business schools in the country operate on a grading curve, students have a hard time dealing with the fact that a predetermined amount of As, Bs, Cs, Ds, and Fs are distributed at the end of a semester. All in all, students are happy with the academics at USC. Resourceful students are ecstatic about courses, and passive students have good and bad things to say.

Facts & Statistics

Student-Faculty Ratio
9:1
Full-Time Instructional Faculty
1,723
Part-Time Instructional Faculty
1,401
Total FT Faculty
3,321
Faculty with Terminal Degree
90%
Average Faculty Salary
$114,315
Full-Time Retention Rate
97%
Part-Time Retention Rate
0%
Transfer-Out Rate
6%
Graduation Rate
90%
Programs/Majors Offered
230
Academic/Career Counseling?
Yes
Remedial Services?
No
Class Sizes
  • Fewer than 20 Students: 64%
  • 20 to 49 Students: 21%
  • 50 or More Students: 15%
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: No
Life Experience Credits: No
Undergraduate Schools/Divisions
  • College of Letters, Arts, and Sciences
  • School for Communication
  • School of Accounting
  • School of Architecture
  • School of Business
  • School of Cinematic Arts
  • School of Dentistry
  • School of Education
  • School of Engineering
  • School of Fine Arts
  • School of Gerontology
  • School of Medicine
  • School of Music
  • School of Policy, Planning, and Development
  • School of Theatre
Degrees Awarded
  • Bachelor's degree
  • Doctorate - Professional practice
  • Doctorate - Research/scholarship
  • Master's degree
  • Other
  • Post-bachelor's certificate
  • Post-master's certificate
Most Popular Majors
  • Business Administration and Management: 6%
  • Computer Science: 2%
  • Social Work: 3%
  • Teacher Education and Professional Development, Specific Subject Areas, Other: 2%
Special Study Options
Study abroad
Best Places to Study
  • Doheny Library
  • Leavey Library
  • Study lounges in residence halls
  • Taper Hall
Tips to Succeed
  • Apply for internships early in the year.
  • Check your e-mail at least three times a day.
  • Don't ever be afraid to ask questions; no one will make fun of you for getting an A.
  • Don't miss class if you don't have to.
  • Get involved on campus.
  • Get to know Los Angeles.
  • Research all of your teachers before your first class.
  • Take the classes that appeal to you, not the classes that seem impressive to others.
  • Think about studying abroad.
  • Visit teachers in office hours.
Did You Know?
  • USC athletic teams were called the Methodists before they were named Trojans in 1912.
  • Actor John Wayne, also known as Marion Morrison, played tackle while at USC and graduated in 1929.
  • Battle-bound troops in the Aleutians Campaign during World War II were inspired by USC's "Fight On" song.
  • USC graduates designed the Department of Water and Power Building, St. Basil's Catholic Church, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, and Los Angeles' City Hall.
  • Robert Zemeckis, Ron Howard, George Lucas, and Bryan Singer are all USC film school graduates.
  • Since 1912, USC is the only university in the world to have a gold medal-winning athlete in every summer Olympics.

Student Polls

How strongly do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements?    Based on 210 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 129 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 128 responses

  • 41% This was my dream school.
  • 50% This was one of my top choices.
  • 9% This was a school I settled for (safety school).

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