By Mary Larson, Program Management Director, UW Educational Outreach
Summer Quarter at the University of Washington is a wonderful time to expand your horizons and create a summer that's just right for you. The campus is calm and less crowded, yet still offers diverse academic opportunities. Maybe you want to experience the campus, the faculty and the courses before you start your UW classes in the fall. Or maybe you are an international student with a free term. You can use Summer Quarter to earn credits at a great American university—the University of Washington.
Terry Swanson, instructor for Introduction to Geological Sciences, has this to say about Summer Quarter:
It is a great opportunity to focus on one or two classes. You can adjust your schedule so you can have certain days of the week off, or afternoons off, but still take some serious credits. Geology is a field science. What better time to take it than in the summer when it is so nice in this area. The campus is more peaceful. The field trips are great. It really is a relaxing time to be at the UW.
Many prerequisite and popular courses are offered in the summer and since registration is open to everyone you have a good chance of getting in. Summer is an excellent time to fulfill prerequisites so that you can be eligible for a fall-start course series. Check the UW Time Schedule for the complete listing.
You can also select courses required for the major you are interested in. Take a key course during the summer to make sure the major is right for you.
The focus and intensity of summer is due, for many courses, to the compressed schedule of a four-and-one-half-week term, either A Term (June 18 through July 18) or B Term (July 19 through August 17.) You can find the term a course is offered in the UW Time Schedule listing for each course. Full term courses run from June 18 through August 17, 2012.
For courses offered in only A or B Term, the number of class hours per week is increased, along with the required homework. William Talbott, instructor for Philosophy of Human Rights, described the intensity this way:
We meet two hours per day, five days per week for four and a half weeks. For four and a half weeks they will eat, breathe, and sleep the philosophy of human rights. Because we spend so much time together, the 30 students in summer get to know each other better and they bond much more than do the 150 students in my regular course. The feeling in the classroom in Summer Quarter is much more a feeling of shared community. It is an intense experience and it is not for everyone, but for many students it is a unique educational experience that stays with them long after it ends.
You can maximize your time this summer studying with award-winning faculty. William Talbott received a Distinguished Teaching Award in 2011 and also was recently honored by the Korea Human Rights Foundation for his book Which Rights Should be Universal? Terry Swanson received a Distinguished Teaching Award in 2007. Another example is Jamie Walker, a Distinguished Teaching Award recipient in 2008, who will be teaching Ceramic Wheel Throwing (ART 202).
The UW College of Arts & Sciences is offering something new this summer as part of the 21st Century for Liberal Learning. This coordinated offering of courses—The Future of Storytelling—provides a synthesis of theory and practice to cultivate learning and critical thought within and beyond film. The courses include:
Summer Quarter also provides other opportunities to explore the genre of film through a variety of disciplines, including:
Many of these courses are rarely offered during the academic year, so 2012 will be a unique opportunity for this convergence of academic expertise and applied learning.
Since many students aren't as tied down with major course requirements in the summer, you can dig into another area that interests you. Here are examples of themes you could study.
Sustainability—Explore one of the hottest topics in the world.
Pacific Northwest Biosphere—Consider taking courses that earn you necessary credits while exploring the local biosphere.
Foreign Languages—The UW offers more summer language intensives than just about any school in the U.S. Consider taking your first or second year of language in a nine-week Summer Quarter intensive and prepare yourself to study abroad in the following year. For 2011, languages include American Sign Language, Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Persian, Russian, Spanish, Swahili, Tagalog, and Ukrainian.
Earn UW credits from your own backyard by taking online courses. Fulfill general education requirements and explore something new: