Photo by Casey Gomez

In order to encourage more students to take advantage of the summer months to take classes, the Summer Semester Initiatives office has pushed for and succeeded in making changes to the tuition model that will make taking classes more affordable.

In the summer of 2018 and for every summer semester following, students will be charged $333.60 per credit hour they take.

“My hope is that we will get some really creative experiences during the summer for our students,” said De Morris Walker, director of Summer Semester Initiatives.

The recent change was approved by the Board of Regents. Tech is following several other schools in the University System of Georgia that already charge per-credit-hour for their
summer sessions.

This is a change from the previous model, which charged students a flat rate based on what range of credit hours they fell into: either six and below, or seven and up.

For example, in-state students who took six credit hours during the summer session of 2017 were charged $2,916 in tuition. In-state students who took a single credit hour were charged the same amount.

The new rate was calculated by determining the usual charge for a student taking 15 credit hours, a standard full-time schedule, and determining what the per-credit-hour charge should be.

According to Walker, the lower tuition will invite Tech students to take classes during the summer and therefore graduate in less time.

“In the summer, the flat rate model was a barrier to students,” Walker said. “Students said that it prohibited them from taking one class here. We found that a number of students were picking up a course here or there at other institutions.”

He also hopes that it will encourage other college students who permanently reside in Georgia to take a class or two at Tech when they are home for the summer.

A complimentary program that will pilot in 2018 encourages the colleges at Tech to hold classes that will help students make progress towards getting a minor. The College of Design, for example, plans to offer five courses that can be taken together and would compose a full minor in industrial design.

In addition to the new program, the Summer Semester Initiatives office looked into what classes students need to take the most in the summer months in order to fulfill their requirements. Walker and his colleagues are working to make more of these classes available.

In order to put these changes into action, the Summer Semester Initiatives will provide financial incentives such as course development grants for faculty to support them as they do the necessary work to adjust their classes to fit the summer sessions, which are far shorter than the fall and spring semesters.

The long summer session is ten weeks long, while there are early and late short sessions, which are both five weeks long.

Students who are interested in the opportunities to take classes over the summer are invited to the informational Summer Session Fair on March 1 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Kessler Campanile.