Tips for Staying Motivated During Summer Classes

Summer school is a great option for students wanting to get ahead on their coursework or catch up from previous semesters. However, when it seems like everyone else is enjoying their summer vacation and you're the only one in class, it can be challenging to remain focused. Here are a few tips to stay motivated when taking summer classes.

Maintain a regular schedule

Whether your summer class is online or in-person, keeping a regular schedule during the summer can help you stay on track in your courses. Schedule time not only for homework and studying, but also ensure you are getting enough sleep and taking good care of your health. If you are exhausted or not feeling well, it may become difficult to concentrate on your courses.

Allow time for fun

Although the entire summer may not feel like a vacation when you are taking classes, allow yourself the time and opportunity to have some fun. When creating your class and study regimen, leave specific time available so you can do things you enjoy. Review your syllabus at the beginning of the term and notice times when the workload seems lighter. Is there a weekend that the only assignment is reading? Perhaps you can schedule weekend at the beach or mini camping trip, and read while relaxing in the sun. If assignments are always due Friday by midnight, let your friends know you can hang out on Saturdays once your homework is complete. Giving yourself the chance to relax and have fun during summer should help ensure you don't feel stifled by your summer course load.

Remember your intention

Consider why you are taking summer courses. What goal is it helping you to achieve? Are you getting ahead on major requirements so you can study abroad next semester? Are you retaking a demanding math course and summer allows you to focus on just the one class? Recalling your summer school intention may greatly boost your motivation.

Seek peer support

Identify friends who are also taking summer classes so you don't feel like the only person not taking a fun vacation. If all of your friends seem to be taking the summer off, find a peer in your summer class that you can connect with. You can hold each other accountable for showing up to class and completing assignments. Schedule study sessions and take practice tests together.

Don't overwhelm yourself

Be smart when planning your summer courses. Summer classes are typically accelerated, so naturally you will do more work in less time that the regular semester. Know yourself and your limits. If you generally take five or six classes in the regular semester, consider taking a maximum of three in the summer. If you begin to feel overwhelmed, your drive to be successful may be negatively impacted.

These tips can help any student stay motivated to be successful in their summer classes. Remember to stay focused, but also allow yourself time for enjoyment and relaxation to avoid burnout. Once summer grades are posted and your hard work has paid off, reward yourself. Good luck in your courses!

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