According to a 2007 report released by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, students attending the nation’s highest ranked universities are graduating with less knowledge of American history, government and economics than they had as incoming freshman.
The study’s findings were accumulated through the distribution of a 60 question multiple-choice exam to 14,000 students, spanning 50 schools in all. Twenty-five of the schools studied were academically high-ranking universities in America, such as Princeton, Harvard and Yale. These schools rank as number one, two and three respectively on the U.S. News & World Report’s Top National Universities. To diversify the findings, the remaining schools of the study were randomly selected among the remaining four-year colleges and universities in the country.
Although UC Irvine was not among the top 25 schools listed in the study, one could tell simply by looking at the diversity of the student population and at the programs offered at UCI that students can easily learn a great deal more about American history, government and economics than they could as incoming freshman due to the opportunities available on a large campus. This is evident in the Paul Merage School of Business, which has a program that is largely comprised of economics classes that are not dwindling in attendance but in fact are growing as the school plans to introduce a new major in business administration in fall 2008.
Similarly, the learning environments of graduate schools in such universities as UCI look promising. This is apparent when looking at the accomplishments of Simon Singh, the president of the Entrepreneurs Association at UCI and a master’s in business administration candidate for the Paul Merage School of Business.
‘As an MBA candidate rounding out my final year of the program, I can say that my understanding of the economy and its drivers has certainly increased.