Our students ranked their experience as including coursework that emphasizes organizing ideas and analyzing data, as well as interpreting complex relationships and arguments. Critical thinking and reasoning are an essential part of the liberal arts curriculum. Such skills are encouraged by requiring a wide range of courses in many different departments, and are among the most valuable cognitive abilities that a person can take into the world beyond the gates of the College.
Summary: In the measures of critical reasoning, Hampden-Sydney students outperform their counterparts at other baccalaureate-granting arts and sciences colleges as well as from all of the NSSE-reporting schools, both as first-year students and as seniors. Moreover, we see greater gain from first-year to senior-year among the Hampden-Sydney students than in either of the other comparison groups.