If you attend a larger university like the University of Rhode Island, it is almost guaranteed that a lot of your courses will take place in a lecture hall with hundreds of other students. There are pros and cons to this kind of setup at URI. It is not for all students, but can be beneficial to others. Here are some pros and cons of large lecture halls at the University of Rhode Island.
1.Pro: A more independent work environment.
If you are the type of student who likes to keep to themselves during class, and you learn the best on your own without needing too much one-on-one interaction with your instructor, then a lecture style course will appeal to you. In a lecture, there are so many students that a professor will usually just project the notes and teach what is planned for that day. Most of the class will consist of taking notes, however a lot of students enjoy working independently in their courses.
2. Con: It is harder to make a connection with your professor.
Like you probably have heard many times before, it is extremely beneficial to college students when they make an effort to make connections with their professors throughout their college careers. However, this is much harder to do when you take a class with hundreds of other students. If establishing connections with your professors is something that is important to you, these types of classes may not be for you.
3. Pro: You will most likely be enrolled in a smaller section of this course (recitation).
Although the lectures for classes at URI can be overwhelming, the university assigns students a recitation period for a lot of the lectures that people can take on campus. This is basically a smaller group of students that are also enrolled in the lecture that come together, lead by a TA, and dig deeper into what was taught during lecture. So, if you are the type of person who cannot focus in a larger classroom environment, you will be able to learn your material in recitation as well.
4. Con: It is naturally harder to focus in a lecture environment.
Paying attention to what is being taught during a lecture can be challenging for many students. Because there are so many people in the classroom, the professor cannot constantly look over your shoulder to see what is on your phone or your laptop. Therefore, if you are the type of person that is easily distracted, you might find yourself doing other homework or online shopping during lecture. If that is the case, it may be more beneficial to find a different type of classroom setup.
Overall, the University of Rhode Island has many large lectures throughout it’s course catalog because of the fact that there are so many students at the school. Talk to your adviser when you are picking classes and discuss what the best options would be for the way you learn. Good luck and work hard, Rhody Rams!