Study Looks at Colleges Based on Their Study Habits

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We’ve come to the end of college admissions cycle for the class of 2023. Acceptance notifications have gone out and students now face the agonizing choice of a home for the next four years. To help students weigh their options, Course Hero, an online learning platform curating over 25 million course-specific study resources, analyzed students’ study habits at over 100 universities.

“From financial aid packages to housing options to class size, students must consider a myriad of factors when they select which acceptance to take, and we think that study habits should be among them,” said Course Hero cofounder and CEO Andrew Grauer.  “At Course Hero, our vision is for every student to graduate confident and prepared. A big part of that is choosing a college environment that sets you up for success — and that means finding a student body with study habits and expectations that mesh with yours.”

Best schools for night owls
Based on the specific school’s traffic on the Course Hero platform between midnight and 5 a.m., compared to that school’s overall traffic on the platform. National average: 4%

  1. Harvard (19% of all studying happens between midnight and 5 a.m.)
  2. University of Notre Dame (15%)
  3. New York University (14%)
  4. St. John’s University (13 %)
  5. University of Maryland (12%)
  6. University of Texas (11%)
  7. Georgia Institute of Technology (11%)
  8. Stony Brook University (11%)
  9. University of Michigan (11%)
  10. University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (11%)

The research found Harvard to be notable in several ways. In addition to having the highest rate of nighttime studying overall, Harvard’s rate actually jumps up from the midnight hour to the 1 a.m.hour. Only Notre Dame and NYU did the same. Moreover, the analysis found that while most post-midnight studying takes place between midnight and 3 a.m.Harvard was an exception. Crimson students are significantly more likely to be studying after 3 a.m. compared to other schools. In fact, 6% of all Harvard student traffic took place between 3 a.m. and 5 a.m.—when most other schools showed traffic levels well below 2%.

Need your 8 hours? These schools might be for you
Based on the specific school’s traffic on the Course Hero platform between midnight and 5 a.m., compared to that school’s overall traffic on the platform. National average: 4 %

  1. University of Indianapolis (0.74% of all studying happens between midnight and 5 a.m.)
  2. Colorado Mesa University (0.99%)
  3. Gardner-Webb University (1.19%)
  4. Miami Dade College, Kendall (1.23%)
  5. University of Maine (1.28%)
  6. University of Wyoming (1.31 %)
  7. Indiana University, South Bend (1.49%)
  8. Northern Michigan University (1.58%)
  9. University of Arkansas, Fort Smith (1.74%)
  10. University of Redlands (1.89%)

Sleepless in … Massachusetts
Looking at students across each state to identify patterns, Course Hero found some variations by state.

College students in Massachusetts are much more likely to stay awake studying from midnight to 5 a.m. than students from other states, with 11% of studying happening overnight. Other states where students were likely to stay awake during the early hours: Missouri (2%), Utah (2%), Washington (2%), North Carolina (1%).

“Academic culture and climate can have a big impact on how successful a student is in college,” said Grauer. “By selecting a school where the study habits more closely align your own best practices, you can make the road to success smoother.”

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