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Surveys help align summer courses to the needs of students

By Sarah Hess
On August 29, 2017

University students now have a say in which classes are offered during the summer semester.

With polls being distributed to gather opinions on which classes both in person and online should be offered during summer semester, students have the chance to decide which classes will be offered. Summer classes help students advance in their degree progress and save them money by reducing costs of undergraduate courses while offering more in-demand classes and more online courses. Along with the fact that summer classes are shorter than the normal fall or spring terms, credits can be earned in four to eight weeks in summer courses. 

Typically, summer courses are chosen based on what faculty and staff believe the students will need, but the 2017 summer classes were the first to be hand-picked by students. Asking students what courses, times and mode of delivery summer classes are offered allows students a tailored choice selection. 

Head of the Department of Teaching and Learning Dr. John Trowbridge is an associate professor that teaches summer courses. Trowbridge explains the differences he sees between fall or spring semester courses and summer courses. 

“I would say the biggest difference between summer courses versus a semester course is the intensity,” said Trowbridge. “Students have to get the same material that they would get in a semester course often in a much shorter period of time.”    

Trowbridge also describes how these summer courses benefit the university’s students.

“The program is designed with the students in mind,” said Trowbridge. “By offering more online and hybrid courses, students can take coursework and perhaps get ahead so they can graduate in four years or less.”

The price of summer courses has been reduced to where students are able to earn three credit hours for less than $900. Trowbridge explains how these money saving classes are what interest many into taking summer classes. 

“The courses are cheaper, that has to appeal to anyone but especially to our students,” said Trowbridge. “For some of them, it is a jump-start to make up for semesters when they could not take a heavy load. Further students can take courses that may be closed because of high demand during the regular semester. I really do hope that continues.”  

To accommodate to the needs of the university’s students, surveys were sent out to find the best available summer classes that fit the needs of students. With around 200 responses collected, the enrollment of summer classes had seen an increase in the 2017 term. 

Department Head of Education Dr. Colleen Klein-Ezell describes what the collected responses from the survey were and what the student body wished to gain from summer classes. 

“The survey said that we need to offer classes that our students needed in order to graduate at a quicker rate than normal,” said Klein-Ezell. “We mainly use courses that will get them in methods earlier. It just so happens that there were some courses that students needed.” 

For more information on all the offered courses the summer semester allows students, go to 

http://www.southeastern.edu/admin/admissions/summer_semeste

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