When we were younger, I’m sure we thought of summer as a time to relax, hang out with friends, and have (almost) zero responsibilities. Summer vacation was what we longed for all school year! Come May, most classes would start the countdown as students pushed through just a few more weeks of school. Now, as college students, summer has a whole new meaning. While we long for freedom from a heavy course load and semester responsibilities, we also begin to stress over obtaining a summer job, and the need to make as much money as humanly possible in 3 short months.
With the desire to be free from schoolwork, and the stress of finding a job plaguing us – the thought of summer classes might make us a bit sick. More schoolwork is the LAST thing we envision our summer entailing. Unfortunately, summer classes are a must for most college students. Instead of focusing on the bad, it’s good to shine a light on the perks of taking summer classes.
They Keep Your Brain Going
Sure, it’s good to give your brain a break after a hard semester, but a 3-month break is a bit extensive. If you did absolutely no schoolwork from May-August, the struggle to get started back into a 12+ credit schedule would be torturous. Struggling to get back into the swing of a full semester could hurt your grades, too, causing the rest of the semester to be spent working to get your grades up. Taking 3 or 6 credits through your university’s online program or through a local community college keeps your brain active without filling your summer schedule with work. Plus, most summer classes don’t begin until June so you have almost a month long break between finals and the beginning of summer classes.
Most general education classes and electives can be done through your local community college and transferred to your university. Obtaining credits through your community college will cost you about a fraction of getting them through your university. If you can fulfill those pesky gen eds and electives for a fraction of the cost, why wouldn’t you?
They’re (Sometimes) Easier
Summer classes are usually condensed down into 6 or 8 weeks, while a normal semester is 15 weeks. You cannot possibly fit 15 weeks of work into 6 or 8, so with that said, instructors usually eliminate a lot of the work you’d be doing in a normal semester to make the course flexible. The work itself is probably the same difficulty, but writing 4 papers instead of 8 while still getting the same amount of credits you’d get during a normal semester is certainly a bonus. You’re practically ~cheating the system~ .
You Have More Time to Focus on the Material
Summer classes are a great way to knock out gen eds and electives so you have more time to focus on major-specific classes during the regular semester. Also, summer gives you an opportunity to really learn the material in your respective general education or elective courses. You can take a whole range of gen eds, from photography to Microsoft Word to sculpture to African Literature – the list is almost endless. If you have a genuine interest in any elective-type courses, summer gives you the perfect opportunity to dive into that material. In the semester you might not have time to spend a day in the woods painting or taking pictures, but in the summer it gives you something to do and spend your time completing the tasks well.
Through summer courses, you may find a new passion or rekindle the flame of an old interest you lost the time to pursue. You don’t have to rush through the work or just get it done to cross it off of your “To-Do List,” you can learn the material at your own pace and really soak up the information.
You Can Do Them from the Comfort of Your Bed….or Chaise Lounge
One of the biggest perks to taking classes during the summer is that you can do them from the comfort of your own home. Since most schools have everything online, you can do the assignments before you even get out of bed in the morning. Or, you could catch up on your readings poolside. Unless you go to school in a southern state, it’s rare that you can say you’re working on your tan and your schoolwork at the same time. Even if you have the occasional lecture to attend, you can still get your homework done in the sun. Don’t worry about vacations, either, with summer classes your work can easily be done from wherever.
Have you ever put off summer classes and come back to school in a slump? Or, have you taken the time to explore a new interest through a summer class? Tell us!