Pros and Cons of a College Mini TermApril 6, 2004
Updated: January 14, 2014
This post was previously published on eCampustours.com. The information provided is subject to change over time.
If you have ever wanted to get one of your college classes over with as soon as possible, you may be interested in taking a mini-term course. These are courses that usually last eight weeks or less but require the same number of contact hours as regular semester classes. If you have never taken mini-term classes before, you may be wondering if you should register this year. Consider the following pros and cons of mini-term to help you decide:
Pros of a Mini-Term
1. Possible Early Graduation
By taking mini-term classes, you may be able to graduate early, especially if you start taking them early in your college career. If you take one mini-term class each year for four years, you could be ahead 12 credit hours, which may mean graduating a whole semester early.
2. Smaller Classes
Mini-term classes are usually smaller in size, which could give you more interaction in class discussions and more of a one-on-one interaction with your professor.
3. Understanding Professors
Even though you have to work extra hard to learn information in such a short time period, many professors will take this into consideration. They understand that a lot of information is coming at you fast. So, as long as you work hard throughout the short term, some professors will be more lenient with grades during mini-term than they are in a regular semester.
Cons of a Mini-Term
For regular admission, application deadlines are usually in January or February of your senior year. Decision notifications are generally sent out at the end of March or early April.
1. Accelerated Learning
Professors have to cram a lot of material into a short time frame, which means you have to pay close attention during each class meeting and not fall behind on assigned readings.
2. Long Class Times
The number of weeks a mini-term class is at your college will determine the class meeting duration. A mini-term class that is only three weeks long will have a longer class meeting time than a class that is eight weeks long. Therefore, mini-term classes may not be for students who have a short attention span.
3. Homework Every Night
Because mini-term classes only last for eight weeks or less, you have to go to class every day as opposed to two or three times a week during a regular semester. So, since you do not attend class only two or three times a week, you will not have homework only two or three nights a week. Most professors have to assign homework every night during mini-term in order to get through their whole lesson plan.
Mini-term classes are not for everyone. However, if you feel that the pros outweigh the cons, then you should consider registering for a mini-term class this year. It will make graduation that much closer.