What to Expect This Summer Semester

You’ve decided to stick around this summer and take another class or two. Maybe you really enjoy living in your college town and want to basque in your college town glory. Or maybe you really don’t want to be here, but you didn’t do so hot last semester, and you have to retake a course to graduate on time. If you haven’t taken summer classes before, you’ll find summer semester tends to groove a little differently than your typical semester.

Here’s a list of what you should expect!

An Intimate Class Setting

Summer classes are usually smaller than those in the typical semester. As a result, you’ll get to know your classmates and your professors a little bit better on a professional as well as personal level. Having a close relationship with your professor will benefit you in countless ways. You’ll learn more. You’ll be thought of for research projects and assistantships–yes that’s a real word! You’ll have someone who can vouch for your talents and skills in a letter of recommendation. You’ll have someone you can write down as a reference. You’ll have someone who will take time out of their lives to answer questions and give you advice when you’re no longer in their class, or even in college! Make use of the intimate class setting to help your future.

A Team-Like Crowd

Because summer classes only last a few weeks and for longer stretches throughout the day during the hottest, most beautiful time of year, you may find your class will take on an “all-of-us-in-it-together” type of attitude! This can be highly motivational, and even enjoyable! As a result, you might perform better in summer school than you would during the regular semester.

A Faster Pace

Because the professor is covering a semester’s worth of material in probably fewer weeks, you’ll find things move pretty quickly. As a result, it’s best to ask questions as soon as you have them. Email your professor ASAP or hop on over to office hours if you’re confused about a topic. Stay on top of your readings, papers, and homework. Reread your notes in the evening and again before you come to class. If you fall even a day behind, it can be very difficult to catch up.

A Laid-back Environment

While you’re still going to class, it’s also still the summer. You may find that summer semester is a bit more relaxed. Dress tends to be a little more casual. Classes that didn’t allow food and beverages will. There’s empty seats so nobody minds if you put your feet on the chair across from you. And on the hottest days, there’s a chance the professor might let you out a few minutes early. A less formal environment means many students feel less stressed, which gives them the opportunity to do better in school than they might during the normal school year.

Beware Burnout

You may not want to spend all summer in summer school. While it may be a breeze now, spending the past year in college and the following year in college without a few weeks to break in between can cause some students to burn out. Don’t overload yourself. Be aware of when your next college break is. Take downtime when you can.


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