There are plenty of reasons for taking online summer courses. If you want to get ahead on the credits you need to graduate, the summer is a perfect time. If you have to retake a failed class, it’s better to do it before next school year starts. And if you want to upgrade your marks in advance of college applications, upgrade summer courses are the way to go.
There’s only one catch: online summer school can fly by. Compressing a course into two months can be challenging. Add to that all the distractions summer brings – the hangouts, flings, hot weather beach days and family vacations – and finishing on a tight deadline can be doubly difficult.
But it is possible. Here are a few tips for crushing your summer courses successfully at a quick pace.
Have a Plan
If you’re going for quality and quickness, you need a solid plan in place. The more planning you can do in advance, the better positioned you will be to stay on track and finish within your chosen timeframe. Here are a few considerations to make during the planning process:
- Timeline: First, define your timeline. Are you attempting to take MHF4U online (Advanced Functions) in two months? Are you hoping to ace your upgrade course in a month and a half? Or can your coursework spill over into the fall?
- Study Schedule: Once you choose a timeframe, figure out the end date and map a schedule that gets you there. Break down your work into weekly requirements, then daily requirements. The scheduling process is also the time to consider other obligations – are you taking a vacation, volunteering, or making regular social plans with friends? Integrate your extracurricular commitments into your schedule.
- A Proactive approach to roadblocks: Have a contingency plan in place if you hit a roadblock. For instance, will you free up more time on the weekend to complete a particularly challenging assignment? Do you have people you can call for help if you need it?
Type your plan out and keep it in a readily accessible document. That way, you can refer to it often during your course.
Share Your Plan with Your Instructor
Once you know your ideal timeframe, let your teacher know as well. They can help facilitate your schedule to ensure that you stay on track.
Remember, too, that your teacher is an indispensable resource. If you hit a roadblock (as mentioned above), do not hesitate to reach out with questions. Trying to complete a course in isolation will take you far longer.
If Upgrading, Revisit Your Old Notes
If you are taking an upgrade course to improve your marks, consult the notes from when you previously took the class. You may be surprised by how much of the course material you already know! Reading through old notes can also be an effective way to kickstart your memory. The notes are in your writing, after all – they came from your brain, and chances are they are still lodged in there somewhere (albeit a little buried!).
Don’t let the abbreviated summer school session get away from you. Create a detailed plan, consult your teacher for help and advice, and utilize the notes you’ve already taken to finish on time with great results!