ACTA is an independent, non-profit organization committed to academic freedom, excellence, and accountability at America's colleges and universities.

ACTA is an independent, non-profit organization committed to academic freedom, excellence, and accountability at America's colleges and universities.

ACTA is an independent, non-profit organization committed to academic freedom, excellence, and accountability at America's colleges and universities.

What Will They Learn? 2018-19

A Survey of Core Requirements at Our Nation's Colleges and Universities

September 2018 by ACTA

In this 10th edition of its flagship annual survey of college general education curricula, What Will They Learn?, ACTA shines a light on the wide disparity in academic standards at insitutions of higher learning across the country. What Will They Learn? reviews the core curricula of over 1,100 four-year public and private institutions across the country to determine the rigor of each school’s general education program. Ratings are based on how many of the following seven core subjects are included in the curriculum: Composition, Literature, Foreign Language (intermediate-level), U.S. Government or History, Economics, Mathematics, and Natural Science. Grades are awarded on an “A” through “F” scale, depending on how many of the seven core subjects institutions require.  This year, 366 schools earned an "A" or "B" grade, while over 400 received a "D" or "F." Too many colleges and universities conitinue to offer unstructured and chaotic curricula, causing students to sort through a plethora of course options in the name of "choice" and "self-discovery." What Will They Learn? 2018-19 and its interactive companion website WhatWillTheyLearn.com, can help orient students, parents, and trustees as they consider what educational quality looks like in 21st century America.


Selected Findings

Executive Summary

The results of the What Will They Learn? report reveal that many colleges and universities are overlooking the most essential part of a rigorous undergraduate education: a comprehensive core curriculum. Students require sound academic guidance from the colleges and universities they are trusting with their investments, but it is precisely there that too many institutions let them down Students cannot expect to have impact on the world and their communities with a jumble of unrelated knowledge and skills. But for those who graduate with a firm foundation in the liberal arts, the opportunities for success are vast. Continue Reading>>

Press

USAO gets an ‘A’ for academic core quality

The Oklahoman
September 16, 2018 by Staff Reporters |

The University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma in Chickasha is one of 23 institutions out of 1,100 four-year public and private institutions studied nationally by the American Council of Trustees and… Continue Reading >>

WKU defends general education requirements

Bowling Green Daily News
September 14, 2018 by Aaron Mudd |

Western Kentucky University is pushing back on a D grade its general education requirements received from the American Council of Trustees and Alumni in a survey that reviewed academic standards.

Continue Reading >>