The Gatton Academy
via Social Media
March 6-7, 2014
March 8 - 16, 2014
March 17, 2014
Dr. Michio Kaku Lecture
March 19-20, 2014
March 20, 2014
Gatton Academy Research Showcase
March 22, 2014
WKU Student Research Conference
The academic rigor of the Gatton Academy is meant to challenge students to excel at the highest levels, while drawing connections between the classroom and real-world research options.
Students are engaged in a core of math and science university courses that are supplemented with additional coursework in arts, humanities, and other elective subjects. The Gatton Academy curriculum provides students with ground for future study in a variety of STEM areas. In addition, students are able to explore the academic offerings of WKU through other coursework. Students are required to attend the weekly Gatton Academy seminar, which offer rotating topics each semester and will be led by professors, Academy staff members, as well as distinguished community members and professionals.
Though the majority of learning occurs in traditional classroom spaces, Academy students explore academic subjects through a variety of environments and learning styles. STEM coursework is supplemented with classes in English, social studies, foreign language, and other areas to satisfy pre-college requirements set forth by the state of Kentucky.
The Gatton Academy uses a number of academic success indicators to track the overall academic performances of students during their program of study. Some of these indicators include student GPA, scores on the state accountability testing system, and post-admissions ACT/SAT/PSAT scores.
Gatton Academy students generally outperform their high school peers in all categories. Gatton Academy students received the highest average ACT score on the Kentucky state assessment of public high school juniors with a composite of 30.0–exceeding their peers by over ten points. They also generally outperform their traditional college peers taking the same coursework. This level of excellence occurs while the students participate in authentic college research as well as service requirements the students are required to perform.
Most students enrolling at the Gatton Academy bring with them very high grade points averages (typically 3.9 on a 4.0 scale) from their traditional high schools. As expected with taking more rigorous coursework at WKU, their average GPA tends to drop by a small measure. Gatton Academy graduates will compete with students from traditional high schools for admission (and scholarships) into four-year colleges and universities. The Gatton Academy calculates an unweighted GPA based on a combination of a student's prior high school grades and those grades earned while studying at the Gatton Academy. A weighted GPA is also calculated, giving Gatton Academy courses in math, science, social studies, language arts, and foreign language an additional quality point.