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3 College Senior

Academics: difficult to get classes you want

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Academics: Classes are good, most people study in the library. Very difficult though so you have to work for your grades.

5 College Freshman

Academics: Great professors, you can almost always get into the classes you want

5 College Freshman

Academics: Exemplary professors - warm, welcoming, accessible, sharp - I can't imagine a more perfect education!

2 people found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Academics: Academics at Vassar are phenomenal!! You will definitely receive an education you can't get anywhere else!

2 people found this useful Report

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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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Vassar professors are approachable. You won't be told to go to a teaching assistant because there isn't one. Professors lead classes, grade papers and tests, advise students, make themselves available for hours beyond office hours, and conduct research in their respective field. They live in dorms, are with kids at lectures, and invite students to their homes. Professors create and modify classes to fit personal strengths and student input. They are proficient in what they teach and often dynamic in their style of teaching.

Even if Vassar professors weren't half as good as they are, the academic freedom allows students to construct their own program. The fine print is not something you should pull out a magnifying glass for. There are no core requirements, but only three classes students must take: a writing-intensive version of an introductory class offered in a wide range of departments, a quantitative analysis class, and a foreign language sequence, which a good score on an SAT II test fulfills. The rest of your education is up to you. Students are allowed to "shop" for classes, and most add and drop courses during the first two weeks of class to fine tune their schedules. They can create an independent major and are encouraged to study abroad.

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: 67%
  • 20 to 49 Students: 33%
  • 50 or More Students: 0%
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
Degrees Awarded
  • Bachelor's degree
  • Master's degree
Most Popular Majors
  • Biology and Biological Sciences: 3%
  • English Language Studies: 5%
  • History, General: 3%
  • Political Science and Government, General: 3%
Special Study Options
  • Study abroad
  • Teacher certification (below the postsecondary level)
Best Places to Study
  • Dorm parlors
  • Library
  • Student center
Tips to Succeed
  • Ask for extensions ahead of time; you'll most likely get them.
  • Be confident.
  • Challenge not only the content of a class, but the structure.
  • Don't fill up class schedule in late afternoon.
  • Don't get caught in the Mug more than three times a week.
  • Don't leave anything to the last minute. Work ahead.
  • Don't think you are smarter than Betty.
  • Expect weirdness from people.
  • Get drunk before you go to the Mug.
  • Get to know your professors.
  • Go out even if you have work.
  • Introduce yourself as much as possible.
  • People are tougher and smarter than they look.
  • Security is lenient, but don't think you can get away with anything.
  • Sleep rarely. There are way too many fun things to do in the middle of the night.
  • Take advantage of the shuttle.
  • Take Intro to Art History.
Did You Know?
  • Vassar was the first college in the country to include a museum and teaching collection among its facilities. The college's gallery predates such institutions as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, which was founded in 1880, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, established in 1870. Today, Vassar's Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center has more than 17,000 works in its collection.
  • About 500 students participate in fieldwork or internships locally or in New York City for credit. Approximately 70 percent of Vassar students participate in fieldwork for credit before they graduate.
  • Paper needs a little editing? The student-staffed Writing Center located in the library provides help to students at any stage of the writing process, from rough outline to final draft.
  • Students can take as many as four Vassar courses with the Non-Recorded Option, also known as pass/fail. Students select the minimum grade they are willing to accept for a class in the beginning of the semester; if they end up doing well in the course (better than the minimum grade), then they get the grade earned. Otherwise, as long as they don't fail it, they'll earn a pass in the course.
  • The library doesn't have what you're looking for? Vassar students have access to a seemingly infinite number of resources from other academic libraries through Interlibrary Loan and Connect NY. Materials usually arrive within two weeks. Students can renew their borrowed books online to keep them out for extended periods of time.

Student Polls

How strongly do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements?    Based on 37 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 16 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 15 responses

  • 13% This was my dream school.
  • 87% This was one of my top choices.
  • 0% This was a school I settled for (safety school).
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