Which Summer Classes Should You Take?

So you’ve taken the plunge! You’re officially enrolled in the summer semester at your local college: now which courses should you take?

Explore a field in which you’re genuinely interested, or one in which you’ve never even considered having an interest. Engage your latent passions for modern astronomy, Russian history, or cognitive linguistics—or if you’ve always been baffled by why so many people study these fields, you might find an answer by enrolling in a course focused on one of them. You might discover your future college major—or realize that what you thought might be your major isn’t actually appealing at all. Either way, make your summer coursework unforgettable by exposing yourself to the slices of academia that capture your attention most.

Here’s one more very important consideration to make when choosing a summer class: will it transfer successfully to the kinds of four-year institutions at which you’ll eventually find yourself? Look into some of your top-choice schools, and see if they’ll take it for credit—you might even reach out to their registrars’ offices and ask directly. Many schools have department-specific exceptions to the transfer policies you’ll find on their websites; others may ask to see the course syllabus to ensure the class you took was of comparable quality to their equivalent. Know what you’ll need by being proactive!

Consider too the other ways you might participate in higher education this summer. Online classes challenge you in a different but equally enlightening way: you must manage your time well and remember to keep up with assignments and lectures, despite there being no physical classroom or close professorial oversight. And although weekend classes are often much longer—sometimes up to six hours!—they’re excellent ways to build endurance for those long seminar courses in your future. Plus, they’re great exercises in keeping clean and organized notes, which are necessary for sifting through all the data you’re receiving in a single day.

And once you’re enrolled, how should you handle the class? How can you guarantee you excel—and thrive—in your college class? The best way to get as much as you can out of the experience is simply to take it seriously—maybe it’s not as rigorous as other classes you’ve taken, and maybe the pace is a bit slower, but don’t view these as reasons to slack off. Instead, use this class as a dress rehearsal for college! Deploy all the best work habits and study skills you’ve learned over the years to absorb every ounce of knowledge available.

And remember, college is filled with unfamiliar people, subjects, and expectations—start familiarizing yourself with these during your summer class. After you’ve shared the slightly awkward experience of day one in a college course with your classmates, introduce yourself and discover what a broad range of people study at your local college, often with totally different fields of interest. And make sure to go in and see your professors during their office hours, just like you’ll have to do once you’re in college. After all, who better to give you advice about college than the people and professors who already spend all their time there?

Most importantly, approach your summer college class with genuine interest and excitement—after all, you’re not there because you have to be. You’re there because you want to learn even more than what you’re already learning during the other eight months of the year.

Which college classes will you be taking this summer?


Like what you see here? We are happy to permit you to use our material as long as you link back! Please refer to us as the Cardinal Education Blog.

0 Responses to “Which Summer Classes Should You Take?”

  1. Leave a Comment

Tell us what you think!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: