Skip to main content

Are Summer Courses for you?

 Are Summer Courses for you?

The decision to take summer classes can be tricky, and summer classes aren’t for everyone. Do you want to take up time during your summer to work on homework? Can summer classes fit into your work schedule? Are you motivated enough to take classes during the summer break? Well, here are some pros and cons to help you decide if summer classes are right for you.



Summer courses can be short and condensed which means you can get 3 credits done in a month. Some students like this because it allows them to focus on one course without the distraction of other courses.


Whether you’re a few credits behind or you want to graduate early, summer courses are a great way to give yourself a little cushion. Doing so can make your course load more manageable and free up some time to work or get involved on-campus.


Summer is a perfect time to get internship credits. Internships give you real-world on-the-job experience and they can count as those 300+ level department electives the Ness School requires. You can also use them as general credits towards the 120 you need to graduate.


If you’ve been putting off a class that you need in order to graduate (but is not related to your major), summer is a great time to get those courses done so you can be more major-focused.


Nearly all of the Ness School’s summer offerings are online. That means you can take them anywhere, so if you’re living at home or working over the summer you can still fit a course or two in without having the commitment of physically sitting in class.



Summer classes are really condensed. Taking a 3-credit course over a 1-month span is intense. The workload is still that of a 3-credit course, but it’s crammed into a short time, so you have to stay on top of the work to be successful.


Most summer courses aren’t covered under scholarships and if you use federal loans, it is not an additional amount. The full amount you are awarded for the year is split into three semesters (summer, fall, and spring), instead of two (fall and spring). Financial aid eligibility for summer classes is the same as the Fall and Spring semester requirements. A student must be registered as at least a half-time student with six undergraduate credits.


Sometimes you just need a break. Taking summer courses might be rough if you’re on the brink of burn out. The lack of break combined with condensed courses can lead to burn-out or lower grades than you’re used to.


Nearly all of the courses the Ness School offers over the summer are online. Online courses require more self-discipline to do the work. If you learn better face-to-face or are easily distracted with summer activities, online courses might be more difficult for you.

If you have any additional questions about how summer classes work or if they are right for you don’t hesitate to ask your advisor.