Anonymous said: I don't know if you are still answering Carleton related questions, but I thought I'd ask. Is Carleton academically demanding? I'm looking for a school that will be a challenge for me, and I love the atmosphere of Carleton from what I've learned so far. However, as far as academic difficulty, I've gotten mixed reviews. What are the classes like and what sort of structure does a typical schedule have?
Of course I am still answering Carleton questions! I am a rising senior, after all…to be honest, I’ll probably still be answering Carleton questions after I graduate…
Is Carleton academically demanding? Well, to put it simply, YES. Carleton is extremely academically rigorous. A lot of effort goes into maintaining good grades. This includes attending classes, doing outside work (readings and written work alike), and actually engaging with the subject.
If you are looking for a challenge, Carleton definitely has it for you. The ‘challenges’ I’ve encountered have all been fun hell, if that makes any sense. Something another one of my friends chipped in just now that should be mentioned is that the academic workload is what you make it. If you want to make straight A’s, you will be working from here to the moon every night. If you want to do well in school but are okay with, well, not getting straight A’s, you will be working for a few hours every day. This method leaves room for fun stuff, like all of the extracurriculars Carleton has to offer. Doing well at Carleton is very much a balance between time you’d like to dedicate to academics versus time you’d like to spend socializing and participating in non-academic activities.
The classes vary, but something that the majority of them have in common is that they are all very small. Each class normally has 25 students or less in it. The professors engage with you directly and genuinely want you to learn. They push you to do your best.
A typical schedule for a Carl is normally very busy. My days consist of going to my work-study job, going to class, doing a bit of homework every night, and then going to whatever extracurricular I have that night (I have a lot of them). This is typical for many Carls, but not all. Some people don’t have work-study jobs. Some don’t do their work (bad ideas). Some don’t really do that whole extracurricular thing. Whatever you choose to do is what makes your schedule what it is.
Please, feel free to ask more questions. I love this school and will happily answer, give or take a few days. :)