While The Choice tends to focus on the process of applying to college, we also consider it within our mission to ask how much learning and studying students generally do once they enroll. A new book, “Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses” (University of Chicago Press) by a professor at New York University and another at the University of Virginia, attempts to answer questions like these in a systematic way–and, as its title suggests, its findings suggest reason for concern. In the book, and in an accompanying study being released Tuesday, the authors followed more than 2,300 undergraduates at two dozen universities, and concluded that 45 percent “demonstrated no significant gains in critical thinking, analytical reasoning, and written communications during the first two years of college.”

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staff and wire services reports