The short answer is you can take as many Summer classes as you like, but that doesn’t mean that’s a good idea.
The long answer is that it depends on how much time you have during the summer, what your grades are in school, and how much college credit you need to graduate.
If you’re working full-time this summer or want to spend your days at the beach (or the mall), then don’t plan on taking more than one class per term. If you’re not working and have lots of time on your hands, then consider taking two or three classes during Summer Session 1 and/or Summer Session 2.
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Students who are making good grades in school (3.0 GPA or higher) might consider taking two classes during each session. Students with lower GPAs should consider taking one class per session to ensure they do well in their courses.
It’s important to remember that summer courses are typically more rigorous than regular semester courses because they are condensed into a shorter period of time. If you’re currently struggling in school, then be cautious about signing up for a full load of summer classes because they will be fairly demanding and may make it more difficult to succeed academically.
What are your school’s rules?
Most colleges have policies that limit how many classes students can take each term. The number of allowable credits varies from school to school, and there may be restrictions on online coursework as well. For example, at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, some programs allow students to take up to 18 credits per semester, but only up to 15 can be taken online.
Regardless of whether your school has explicit policies on summer course loads and online classes, it’s best to talk with an adviser before registering for more than one class during the summer term.
What are my goals and priorities this summer?
It’s important that you think about how much time you can realistically commit to each class before signing up for multiple. If you need help deciding how many credits are right for you this summer, talk with your adviser or academic counselor. And remember: You can always drop a class if it becomes too much!
- Are there any requirements I need to fulfil like prerequisites, electives or general education courses?
- Am I interested in learning about something new, or just want to get my requirements out of the way?
- Is it important for me to work during the summer, or would I rather focus on my studies without a job getting in the way?
- Do I have more flexibility now than during a regular semester to take harder classes that require more study time? Am I willing to devote my entire summer to schoolwork?
How many classes are too many?
This will vary from person to person, but students should keep in mind that each credit hour generally represents three hours of work outside of class. So 3 credit hours = 9 hours per week, 6 credit hours = 18 hours per week, 9 credit hours = 27 hours per week and so on.
- For a full-time student: the maximum load is 18 credit hours. You may request to take more than 18 credits with the approval of the Dean of Students or his/her designee. However, financial aid recipients must consult with their financial aid counselor first.
- For part-time students: maximum load is 12 credit hours. You may request to take more than 12 credits with the approval of the Dean of Students or his/her designee. However, financial aid recipients must consult with their financial aid counselor first.
The minimum course load for a graduate student to be considered as full time is 6 credit hours during fall or spring semesters (or 3 credit hours during summer sessions).
While it may seem like a good idea to enlist as many classes as possible, you may want to reconsider this course. The fact of the matter is that there is no hard and fast rule for how many classes you should take at once. It depends on several factors, and ultimately only you can judge whether it’s worth it to yourself to strain yourself during the summer.
Ultimately, it’s up to you to work out whether you can handle more classes in the summer. But if you think about things ahead of time and plan accordingly, then you’ll be able to maximize your chances of success and be able take as many classes as you can handle.