Guest Author - Susan D. Bates
It can be difficult to remain motivated during the summer session after taking courses throughout the rest of the year. This is especially true if you see your friends hanging out at the pool, going to parties, and taking vacations. However, because summer sessions are generally shorter, summer could be the most important time of the school year to keep your motivation high. Shorter classes move at a faster pace; therefore, it can be very difficult to catch up after you get behind.
Below are methods you can use to help keep yourself on track during the summer session:
Select Interesting Courses
If possible, register for summer courses that you find interesting. Summer can be one of the hardest times to stay motivated due to burn out from having completed fall and spring coursework and due to the wide availability of other fun activities. If you are not interested in the course material, it can be even more difficult to persuade yourself to attend classes and to complete coursework. On the other hand, if you enjoy what you are learning and desire to know more, it will be easier to motivate yourself to stay on track with your work.
Consider Online Courses
Online courses often allow more flexibility on the time of day you complete coursework. This flexibility might allow you to participate in more fun activities with your friends.
Make sure you manage your time wisely. Set up a schedule for yourself to ensure your work is completed on time. The flexibility that often accompanies online learning can cause students who are not careful with their time to fall behind.
Schedule On-campus Classes Early in the Morning
The earlier your classes start, the earlier they will end. If you wait to start your school day until eleven o’clock, you will be missing the ideal time to go to the pool or hang out on the campus lawn. However, if your course starts at eight o’clock, you are likely to be available for afternoon fun.
Participate in Class
Attend and participate in every class. Involving yourself in the course will help keep you stay interested in the material, which will help you remain motivated to study and learn more.
Also, if you have completed your schoolwork ahead of time, you will be available to participate in fun activities when unexpected opportunities come along.
Spend Time with Classmates
The students in your class have the same schedule as you do, at least for part of the day. These students will generally have the same test dates and assignment due dates as you. Therefore, they are likely to be busy when you are busy and free when you are free. If you are hanging out with classmates, you will be able to engage in fun summer activities together.
Focus on Your Goals
There was a reason you registered for the summer summer session. It may be because you want to graduate early, need to catch up on credits, or desire to have a lighter schedule during the rest of the year. Whatever the reason for your summer course registration, keep it in mind whenever your motivation begins to wane.
Decide on a reward you would like to give yourself at the end of the session if you do well in your course. Write down concrete criteria for achieving that goal. Keep this goal in mind each day. If you need extra motivation, you may want to give yourself little rewards each day that you attend class or complete your school work.
Summer can be a difficult time of the year to maintain your academic motivation because you may want to engage in other activities or you may feel burnt out from taking classes during the rest of the academic year. It can be especially difficult to keep up your motivation if your friends are not also enrolled in summer courses. Using the motivation tips above can help you stay energized during the summer session.