Small colleges offer many advantages over large universities, starting with the cost. The main question most people have is are they sacrificing a good education by going to a small college. The quick answer is "no." Small colleges can absolutely provide just as good and in some cases an even better education than many large campuses. Following are several ways a small college can provide a quality education.
Smaller Class Sizes Provide a Better Education
Smaller class sizes are a huge advantage of smaller colleges. In a smaller classroom setting students are able to interact with each other during classroom discussions. They are able to ask questions of the professor for clarification of confusing points and they can ask for help when they need it. Finally, smaller class sizes allow interaction with the professors on a personal level. Professors are able to get to know their students individually. This benefits the students when they are ready to graduate and look for employment and need a recommendation from their professors. Students in a smaller classroom setting will not get lost in the crowd of lecture halls containing hundreds of students.
Recommended: The 100 Most Affordable Small Colleges in America
More Opportunity to Write
Smaller classroom sizes means more opportunity to write and better feedback on your work. Evaluating writing assignments is a time consuming undertaking, and professors can spend more time evaluating each student's work when they have a class of 20-50 students as opposed to a classroom of hundreds of students. This is important because the more you write, the better you get. Writing skills are critical in every field of study.
Teaching is Done By Professors, Not Teaching Assistants
Smaller colleges focus on undergraduate degrees, which means there are not a huge group of graduate students teaching the classes. In larger universities with graduate and doctorate programs these advanced degree students will act as teacher's assistants and teach the undergraduate classes to get the experience they need. Taking a class taught by a professor instead of an inexperienced teaching assistant guarantees that you will receive a better education.
Smaller Colleges Allow For a More Flexible Education
Most smaller colleges have the ability to design your classes around your major interest. Instead of being locked into the rigid class requirements that large universities require for a degree, smaller colleges can make adjustments to the classes that you need to graduate. You have more leeway in choosing the classes that you want to take and still achieve your goal of a degree in your major field of study.
In addition, smaller colleges have a more responsive advisory department and less red tape involved. Smaller colleges means fewer students and more time available to spend with each student ensuring that their college experience is individualized for their personal goals.
There are many different things to consider when choosing which college you want to attend. The most important consideration is the quality of education that you will receive. If a smaller college is a better fit for your personality and finances, you can relax knowing that the quality of education you will receive is just as good, and in some cases even better at smaller colleges.