University students muddle through towards a degree without acquiring much acknowledge, a new report shows. The study, conducted by New York University sociologist Richard Arum, and Josipa Roska from the University of Virginia, was based on their book Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses.
More than 3,000 students from 29 American universities and colleges were surveyed by the researchers. What they found was startling. Forty-five per cent of students did not show an improvement on skills such as writing and critical thinking. After four years, 36 per cent of students had barely improved. Student learning was measured using the Collegiate Learning Assessment. “These are really kind of shocking, disturbing numbers,” Arum told USA Today.
The report also found that students were studying half the amount of time as students a decade ago, but that the average grade point average was 3.2. “Students are able to navigate through the system quite well with little effort,” Arum said. Professors focusing less energy towards teaching and more towards research, are cited as reasons for the results.