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Academics

The Liberal Arts at Virginia Wesleyan College

As a liberal arts college, Virginia Wesleyan embraces the values inherent in a liberal education–-an education dedicated to developing the open-minded, disciplined reflection necessary not only to professional success, but also to a life of personal accomplishment and social commitment. The college's academic program brings the ancient tradition of liberal education into the here and now.

The general education requirement emphasizes breadth, showing students how to investigate complex subjects from multiple perspectives and how to make connections among various disciplinary approaches to a subject. The academic concentration requirement emphasizes depth, showing students how to focus on a single discipline or field of study. In general, the curriculum emphasizes critical thinking, problem solving, and independent learning.

As students move through the educational program, they develop the capacity to analyze, synthesize, draw conclusions, and communicate results. Classes are small and students are expected to engage their fellow students and the faculty in an active learning environment. They develop intellectual confidence and independent thinking skills, as well as respect for others, intellectual humility in the face of complexity, and openness to a better argument.

A Virginia Wesleyan education is a pathway to a fuller, more active, more compassionate, and more satisfying life. It is also excellent preparation for a career chosen from a wide range of fields, including the arts, the sciences, business, law, education, health care, entertainment, and public service.

The 4x4 Curriculum

In the fall of 2011, Virginia Wesleyan implemented a new initiative designed to make every course more engaging and every program more focused on helping students become successful, independent learners. The standard course was expanded from three semester hours to four, challenging students in each course to explore its content more deeply and offering them more engaging learning activities. The standard course was expanded from three semester hours to four, challenging students in each course to explore its content more deeply and offering them more engaging learning activities. ...more

Faculty Values and Practices

Virginia Wesleyan has, by design, recruited faculty members whose primary interest and commitment is to classroom teaching. In addition, faculty members are engaged in a wide range of scholarly and artistic activities and community service. They hold earned degrees from over 140 colleges and universities, both in the U.S. and abroad. The richness of this educational experience is felt in their influence at Virginia Wesleyan. The faculty at Virginia Wesleyan are committed to the following academic values and practices that underlie the academic program....more

The Student Experience

Recognizing that the skills and previous educational experiences of students vary widely, faculty at Virginia Wesleyan are committed to guiding students and helping them advance their skills, from the time they enter the college until they graduate. To get the most from their college experience, students will need to possess the following general academic skills and personal qualities....more

Our invitation to incoming students is "Bring a spark. Light a fire."

A spark could be an ability, a passing interest, even a hope. Whatever sparks you bring to the classroom and to your own education, whatever "Bring a spark. Light a fire." might mean to you, it means to us that your spark, our opportunities, and four years here will broaden your horizons and create possibilities far beyond what you now can imagine. We look forward to your experiencing the transformative Wesleyan education!

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