Keystone logo

Six Summer Programs to Kick-Start Your Fall Semester

It's already the middle of July, but that doesn't mean that the summer is over. There are many ways to maximize your summer break, but if you've already exhausted all of your holiday plans or are looking for ways to get ahead in the coming semester, consider enrolling in a short-term summer school program. Here are six exciting programs to get you started!

Sep 6, 2023
  • Student Tips
Six Summer Programs to Kick-Start Your Fall Semester

Don't let the dog-days of summer get you down. Summer school is a great way to earn credits for the following semester or acquire exciting electives to inspire your studies this fall. Summer programs are also an ideal way to add some international experience to your academic portfolio. And if you think it's too late to enroll in summer courses, or that you don't have enough time before heading back to full-time studies think again. There are loads of programs that start (and end) before the fall semester begins. We've rounded up six short-term summer programs from around the world and there's something for everyone.

1. For History Buffs
The history of games stretches back into human pre-history, and the role of games in society is important to understanding the culture, politics, and social interactions of a civilization. The Helsinki Summer School's Games and History course is designed for students of history who want to examine gaming from a historical perspective, or utilize games, like Historia, in teaching and learning. The three-week course begins on 4 August and is open to third-and-fourth-year undergraduate history students, though familiarity with video games, RPG, or online gaming platforms is recommended. Coursework includes both written assessment, group work, and participation and students receive five credits on the European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS).

vintage wooden chess rook in the corner of chessboard

2. For Law Students
Understanding international law is important for students preparing for law school, but it also has applications for business students, politics majors, and even students in STEM fields. The International Law Summer School at the Russian New University gives a thorough overview of the theories, application, and foundations of international law within the context of various international legal entities. While the course looks broadly at issues surrounding the implementation and regulation of international laws, it includes a focus on international law as it relates to the environment. The course is open to students from all disciplines, but some experience with case-law and legal terminology is recommended. The course starts in September and runs for two weeks.

Global networking concept with businesspeople team working on wooden desktop with map, network and electronic devices

3. For Language Credits
Many degrees require language credits, and the summer is the perfect time to learn a new language! And, if you combine a summer language program with a study abroad, you get the added benefit of intensive immersion. The Summer Super Intensive (SSI) language program at the Eton Institute in Dubai and Abu Dhabi gives students a chance to learn or improve their Arabic. Arabic is one of the most sought-after language skills for professionals in business, politics, international relations, and many other sectors and the SSI, which immerses students in 60 hours of intensive language learning, is an ideal way to build a solid Arabic-language foundation or increase your skill level. Courses run throughout the summer with classes starting on 24 July and 14 August.

question do you speak Arabic? written in Arabic

4. For Future Teachers
Finland's education system is lauded throughout the world as one of the most forward-thinking and effective in the world. Education majors throughout the world study the methods, priorities, and outcomes of Finland's school systems, so why not go to the source and learn first-hand what makes Finland's educational institutions so special. The Helsinki Summer School offers a three-week program entitled Understanding Finnish Education: From Myths to Realities. Students look at issues surrounding testing, teacher education, multiculturalism, technology, and curriculum, and assess the media promotion and perceptions of education in Finland. The course includes hands-on experience with Finnish schools, interaction with Finnish teachers, and instruction from Finnish education experts. The course begins on 4 August and participants earn six ECTS.


5. For Political Science Majors
The political frameworks of governments around the world are constantly shifting and adapting to forces from within and without. For students of government, international relations are one of the keys to understanding and anticipating the complexities of local, federal, and international politics. The Russian New University offers a short-term intensive course in International Relations aimed at introducing students to “contemporary theoretical approaches to world politics.” The course focuses on theory, as well as a survey of key concepts and ideologies. The course, which runs for two weeks in September, is open to political science majors as well as students in other subjects.

6. For Science...and beyond!
With great power comes great responsibility. No, you can't enroll in a Spider-Man Summer School, but the Introduction to Bioethics course offered by the Helsinki Summer School gives students the opportunity to engage with the philosophical and practical issues catalyzed by advances in biosciences and biotechnologies. The course looks at the ways in which technological and research developments impact and change our understanding of issues like life and death, sustainability, and other bioethical problems, as well as the applications of bioethics to the study of law, philosophy, medicine, and STEM subjects. The course is structured around lectures, workshops, and reflective activities, and students are assessed through their interaction with the class and materials. Classes begin on 4 August and are worth six ECTS.

hand pointing to symbol of a leaf on computer circuit board