Homework in College

After finishing high school, students might think their homework days are over. This is not a correct assumption. While some college classes may chose not to issue homework and instead rely on exams to gauge student performance, many college and university classes still send work home with students.

College homework takes many different forms such as readings, essays, daily exercises, and more, depending on the class. Some college homework might be very similar to high school or middle school homework, though it likely requires more research and effort.


College is all about reading. In fact, in the United Kingdom, achieving a university degree used to be known as “reading for a degree," because of all the books and reading involved in university. Lectures are important, but there is only so much information that can be introduced to students in a one or two hour lecture. Reading material is assigned to supplement lectures and to introduce concepts which can then be discussed in lectures.

Lectures and readings complement each other, and to succeed in a college or university environment, it is important to utilize both learning methods. Teachers recognize this and often assign large amounts of reading in college.


Essays are often a large part of college. Papers written in college are likely to be much longer than those completed in high school. Upwards of 10 pages is normal in many classes. Essays can take more time to write than students might take to study for an exam, though many students prefer essays because they have more time to complete a written assignment, and more time to research and to gather thoughts and ideas and organize them coherently in essay page form.

Essays may also be graded more thoughtfully than a regular exam. With essays, there is not necessarily a correct answer. Many different sides might be argued, and it may be possible to capture more points in an essay than in an exam.

Keeping Up With College Homework

Homework in college can be overwhelming, but there are ways to mitigate the deluge. Being organized, keeping ahead of deadlines, and paying attention in class are all ways to keep ahead of the curve. Study groups are also a great way to help you grasp the material you study in class, especially if lectures and readings aren’t working. After-school clubs, like Italian Club, can also help with concepts or subjects that are giving you trouble.

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