Summer school classes at 2 year college possible SCAM

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  • Thread starter Jurrasic
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  • #1
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They seem to be a total scam based on, if you notice they offer Trigonometry at one school and it takes 4 weeks to complete, however the normal semester is 18 weeks long. So when you enroll in the course, the teacher is only "required" to teach a certain amount of material, if you take the exact same course during the regular 18 week semester, you are going to be getting a much more knowledgeable and much more useful education, and learning a lot more material because the teacher is suddenly required to cover more material, or either chooses to cover more all of a sudden.
And, since math builds on what you have previously learned, basically you can pass a summer school course, and, only be required to cover a certain amount of the material, which is admittedly NOT enough to be able to complete the next level course a lot of the time, and you are then going to want to repeat said course taken during the summer to learn all of the material that should have been covered. In which case you would notice that a lot of material was left out in the short summer version of that class that suddenly is required in the next level course. This must be a scam.
QUESTION: Is 7 weeks a fair time to cover all of the material you want to know when taking a summer class, if the class happens to be say "Calc/Analy Geometry II "
or "Calc/Analy Geometry I" (FyI: The Calculus courses for summer at one school are 7 weeks. And Trig is 4 weeks.)

Do you believe in taking summer school classes? Either, at 4 year colleges, or at 2 year colleges?
 

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  • #2
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I take general education classes during the summer.

I love the fact that the material in the general education classes has been culled down.

I would take classes in my major too but at my current university non are offered during summer.
 
  • #3
eri
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Summer college classes are supposed to cover the same material as the classes over the regular semester because you DO need to use them to move on to the next level. That's why they often meet for many (3-5) hours a day for weeks, have weekly tests, assign a ton of work, and you can't sign up for more than one at a time.
 
  • #4
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What's the class schedule like?

My uni offers full classes that run the full four month summer semester, as well as full classes that finish up in two months.

The two months courses are the same as the four month courses, you just do them twice as fast. The assumption being that you're only taking one or two of these courses and can therefore spend as much time on them as you would a normal, full load.
 
  • #5
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We have the same schedule as mentioned above by zif. I take courses year-round and have ran into no problems or missing information. The local community college is the exact same way. If you are skipping critical topics in the course, something is wrong.
 
  • #6
Really, trigonometry is a pretty useless class anyway (I'm an engineering major BTW). I skipped it and never looked back.
 
  • #7
Pengwuino
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Think about it for a second. You typically have 4 months to complete 4-6 courses. So basically you have about 1.5 courses per month in a sense. So why does it sound too ridiculous to have summer classes over with in just a month? The unfortunate part is the realization that the courses you worked for in 4 months could have been just done in one month separately.
 
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  • #8
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Pengwuino, there are schools that operate this way. Cornell College (Iowa) does this: classes are 3-1/2 weeks (18 class days) long.
 
  • #9
Pengwuino
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Pengwuino, there are schools that operate this way. Cornell College (Iowa) does this: classes are 3-1/2 weeks (18 class days) long.
ooo I wonder how that is. I suppose the obvious worry is does one need time to "digest" a subject.
 
  • #10
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Oh, there are lots of things to worry about. One thing that never seems to come up is "what happens if you hate a class?" Another is that being able to juggle many things at once is a skill in itself. Still, it works for some people.

I am dying to see how a literature class works. "Read War and Peace overnight. We'll discuss it tomorrow, and then onto something else."
 
  • #11
Choppy
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The way condensed summer classes normally work is that they extend the number of lecture hours per day. Rather than thee one hour lectures per week you get one three hour lecture per day - sometimes every day. They can obviously be pretty gruelling.

If you need more time to digest material, it's probably a good idea to avoid such classes if you can help it. On the other hand, some students thrive in this kind of total emersion approach.

As always, buyer beware. You can always check out the course syllabus that's given out at the beginning of the class (or get a hold of a previous one if you're considering such a course in the future) and compare it with a full term course.
 
  • #12
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Oh, there are lots of things to worry about. One thing that never seems to come up is "what happens if you hate a class?" Another is that being able to juggle many things at once is a skill in itself. Still, it works for some people.

I am dying to see how a literature class works. "Read War and Peace overnight. We'll discuss it tomorrow, and then onto something else."
They don't really do that sort of thing anymore. When I was taking all of my humanities and literature courses that were required, we would read from collections of poor quality short stories.

On a side note, I liked Trig! I thought the problems were pretty fun, and I really liked working at proving some of the insanely hard identities that our book had.
 
  • #13
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I don't know if this is the case here, but a local two year school near by tried to make certain topics (mostly math, some writing) more modular.

For example, a normal algebra class might meet for 3 months and cover 10 chapters in a text. instead, you'd have every chapter be its own class and only meet for 2 weeks. (the classes were also online and mostly lower level- algebra, geometry, pre college stuff)
In a normal class, missing two weeks meant total hell. here, it wasn't so bad.
Another benefit was that chapter 4 built on chapter 3, 2 and 1, but chapter 7 only needs chapter 1-4 and 6. Someone who wanted to learn the topics in chapter 6 wouldn't have to sit and learn chapter 5.

Although I haven't seem them doing this recently....
 
  • #14
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They don't really do that sort of thing anymore. When I was taking all of my humanities and literature courses that were required, we would read from collections of poor quality short stories.
One fun class that I took was on science fiction writing, and the teacher deliberately assigned us poor quality science fiction stories to read. The idea was that he wanted us to read published stories, think "I could write something better than that" and do it.
 
  • #15
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One fun class that I took was on science fiction writing, and the teacher deliberately assigned us poor quality science fiction stories to read. The idea was that he wanted us to read published stories, think "I could write something better than that" and do it.
Hah, where were these humanities/lit courses when I was taking them! A friend of mine did a general ed course in Medieval Engineering, building catapults and covering Indiana Jones-esque traps and that sort of thing. I was jealous, I took 20th century something or other and Survey of Boring, among other things.

In all actuality though, I was "forced" to read the "classics" back when I was in highschool, and something must have changed in the last 10 years because a few family members of mine recently graduated probably having never cracked a book. I was a horrible, horrible student back then and I would bet I learned much more than recently graduating A students.

Back on topic:
Jurrasic,
Have you looked through the course syllabus to see if they are legitimately missing topics? What classes are you talking about?
 
  • #16
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They seem to be a total scam based on, if you notice they offer Trigonometry at one school and it takes 4 weeks to complete, however the normal semester is 18 weeks long.
Are you certain your information is correct?

Summer school classes are condensed, but not watered down. Instead of attending a class two or three times a week as you would during the regular academic year, you attend four or five days a week, often for two or three hours at a time. So, all the material DOES get covered, but it's faster paced and you can't afford to miss even a single class.

In summary: summer schools is NOT a scam.
 
  • #17
mege
ooo I wonder how that is. I suppose the obvious worry is does one need time to "digest" a subject.
(this information is available on the Cornell College (IA) website)

One thing they promote due to the single-class-learning system is the opportunity to take extended 'field trips' as a class. For instance - imagine if your class could take a trip to a particle accellerator for 2-3 weeks, or go to a national lab? Instead of being constrained by a student's schedule, they could move the learning to off campus and be a little more hands on than purely black-board academic.
 
  • #18
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Are you certain your information is correct?

Summer school classes are condensed, but not watered down. Instead of attending a class two or three times a week as you would during the regular academic year, you attend four or five days a week, often for two or three hours at a time. So, all the material DOES get covered, but it's faster paced and you can't afford to miss even a single class.

In summary: summer schools is NOT a scam.

OMG You have not seen the material get omitted from summer school courses at this one college, then you'd totally change what you think about it being a scam.
 
  • #19
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OMG You have not seen the material get omitted from summer school courses at this one college, then you'd totally change what you think about it being a scam.
Let's see it?
 
  • #20
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I know GaTech has summer courses that are barely 3 weeks long
 
  • #21
The way condensed summer classes normally work is that they extend the number of lecture hours per day. Rather than thee one hour lectures per week you get one three hour lecture per day - sometimes every day. They can obviously be pretty gruelling.
Comparing summer term of a course I teach (calclus based EM for engineers) to fall term, I have 18 class sessions of 75 minutes in summer (1350 h) and 28 sessions of 50 minutes in fall (1400 h).

I'll note that in summer, the last class session is used for the exam, and in fall there is an exam session during "exam week, as scheduled by the university), so this means that there are really about two hours difference.

What tends to happen in summer is that I cut the end topic (AC electricity) a bit (since students don't have a background in oscillations -- which is saved til our Waves/Optics/Modern course), and I don't review QUITE as much before an exam.
 
  • #22
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Comparing summer term of a course I teach (calclus based EM for engineers) to fall term, I have 18 class sessions of 75 minutes in summer (1350 h) and 28 sessions of 50 minutes in fall (1400 h).

I'll note that in summer, the last class session is used for the exam, and in fall there is an exam session during "exam week, as scheduled by the university), so this means that there are really about two hours difference.
But if you consider the first couple minutes or so of every class, including those in the regular academic year, are completely wasted (prof has to set up, students have to settle in, etc.), there might not be much of a difference after all.
 

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