Friday, August 12, 2011

A Good Way to Use Summer Time – The Summer Session

Starting in the summer of 2010, Woosong University implemented a four-semester system. The system requires students to take classes through both summer and winter vacation breaks. At first, most students, including myself, did not welcome the change since many felt that they were missing other opportunities by participating in the semester system. Traditionally, students have made special plans for their vacation time including getting certifications, traveling abroad and earning money through part-time work. This is because most students are very busy with their studies and assignments during the regular semester. 

In reality however, students often plan things but fail to carry them out. From a personal standpoint, while taking classes this summer, I began to realize that taking courses in the summer and winter breaks is really a great way to spend my vacation time.

This summer semester, I have been taking a class called, “Restaurant Operation”. During the regular semester, Korean professors teach major-related courses and foreign faculty typically only teach general English. However, the summer “Restaurant Operation” class is a major-related course that a foreign professor teaches, but it is in English only. Of course, this creates a burden for students since it may be the first time for many to take a major-related class in English by a native professor.

For example, “English Speaking” was the only class I have ever taken where the entire class was given in English. In this class, the professor spoke English slowly for students and the work in class was fairly easy to understand because it dealt mostly about daily conversation.

This is in great contrast to the work of my summer “Restaurant Operation” course. There are many major-related terms and descriptions in English that are difficult to understand, not only because the words are very different, but also because the professor speaks very fast. For about two days, myself and other students found the class very difficult to understand but quickly adapted to the new class format.

If there were no four-semester system, my fellow students and I would have once more a wasted our vacation time. Yet, because the summer course is compulsory, we all wake up early in the morning to go to school. Woosong students are using their time more effectively. In this course, I have not only gained a lot of new major-related information, but it has also enhanced my listening and speaking skills in English. This has given my class and myself greater confidence to speak with a foreign professor about our major. With the summer session finishing next week, there is even still some time to enjoy the rest of our vacation.

Eun Ah Yook is currently a Woosong Student majoring in Food Service Management


WOW well written EunAh - you raise a couple good points - I wonder how many other Woosong students enjoy 4 semesters and the other point and one I think is worth exploring is 'would Woosong students enjoy/benefit more from an ESP (English for Specific Purposes) program more than the current GEL program now offered (General English)

I find the four semester concept very hectic. Every college student needs a break.
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Yes this method really works on my blog I am thankful to your article on summer use and suggesting also to other friends to have a look on it.

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