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What Are the Benefits of Taking Summer College Courses?

by Susan Revermann

As if choosing the right college and appropriate classes didn’t require enough decisions already, you also need to decide whether you want to stay around campus for summer quarter or not. There are some definite perks to roaming the grounds while most of the other students head home for the summer.

Fewer Students

Since most college students leave campus for the summer, there will be fewer people to push through on your way to your classes. This is particularly helpful for freshman or transfer students who don't yet know their way around campus. The lower student-to-instructor ratios during the summer months also offer more opportunities to get to know your professors and more likely to get some extra assistance when needed.

Getting Ahead

Summer courses can help you to get a jump on completing your prerequisite classes or just want to get one step closer to finishing your degree. If you repeatedly attend summer quarters, you could obtain your degree months ahead of the other students who took those quarters off. High school students in the Advanced Study programs can also take advantage of college classes offered during summer to get that much farther ahead.

Easier To Get Into Classes

Some required classes fill up pretty quickly, especially general classes that everyone has to take. Freshmen often don’t even get a chance to register for some of those classes, because other upperclassmen grab those seats first. Attending summer classes gives you a better chance to snag a spot in those classes. It's also less likely that textbooks for summer classes will be sold out.

Shorter Quarter

Summer courses are often just six or eight weeks long. You can even find some intensive courses that are only four or five weeks in duration. Some colleges may break summer quarter into two or three smaller sessions, so you can still enjoy some of your summer vacation. If you just want to get a certain course out of the way, signing up for it during the summer can get it done weeks faster than taking it during any other quarter.

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