Posted by Peter Graziani on
Wednesday, June 08, 2011
As summer approaches I again am hearing mixed feelings about taking summer session classes. Some of my classmates want to enjoy the weather, while others see it a way to get through classes quickly. I see both sides of the argument, and believe that each person has to make their own decisions on the subject.
This is my second summer as a grad student, and I will be studying throughout the summer for the second time. Last summer, I took an 8 week course, and then participated on a study tour that met through the intersession (early Aug. through mid Sept.), but I knew classmates that took three courses during the 8 week session. In my experience, summer classes are not easier or more informal that fall, winter, or spring quarter classes so expect to do the same amount of work during the summer as you would during the other seasons. The only difference is that the class is only 8 weeks (including finals week) as opposed to 10. This means that each class meeting is longer as well. Summer classes start at 5:30pm and go to 9pm. There is also the option of taking classes that meet for only 4 weeks, or you can take intersession (Aug. 15-Sept. 13) classes; these normally meet twice a week from 5:30pm to 9pm.
One thing to consider is that some classes are only offered in the summer, or there will be other occasions where a professor only teaches in the summer. I am taking a class that fits into the former category, Extraordinary Leaders. I have a classmate that theorizes that it is best to take classes that involve plenty of reading so that he could go outside and read, that way he can enjoy the weather and get school work done simultaneously.
So if you are trying to decide whether to plan for summer session course consider all of the options and the opportunity costs with taking classes, but do not consider these classes to be easier. Regardless of the decision, there is one thing we all must do….have a great summer!!