Summer semester enrollment was at an all-time high for the summer of 2013, as was the number of students who stayed in Abilene.
End-of-summer statistics reveal a 61 percent overall increase in undergraduate enrollment from last year. There were 1,689 students enrolled in the summer semester of 2012, whereas the 2013 summer semester had 2,719 students enroll. Specifically, there was an 89 percent increase in online course enrollment and a 28 percent increase in other courses for undergraduate students. There was also an increase in graduate students’ enrollment in online and other courses.
“The overall summer course enrollment for graduate and undergraduate more than doubled from last year,” said Lisa McCarty, assistant director of Institutional Research.
The annual block tuition has allowed a large percentage of mostly first-year and sophomore students to enroll in summer courses. Seventy-four percent of the sophomore class, alone, took at least one online course this summer.
“Living here for half of the summer wasn’t bad,” said Christina Brown, sophomore nursing major from La Vierna. “The weather made staying here more interesting than it usually is around here, that’s for sure.”
With rainfall at a high this summer, a surplus of students and new technology in the mix, this summer was unlike any other.
“The weather was unexpected and sometimes made it hard to go to class because I didn’t want to go outside,” Brown said. “It was kind of scary.”
ACU also made the switch from Blackboard to OpenClass this summer, which is proving to be a difficult transition for both students and instructors.
“My online class was an intensive course and taking the class through OpenClass made completing it a little more difficult because my professor was as unfamiliar with the new software as we were, which made communication more complicated,” Brown said.
Summer classes are sometimes more rigorous than fall or spring courses because they are the same curriculum taught in a shorter time span, ranging from 2-6 weeks.
“It was hard and I hated it, but once I finished the courses I felt relieved because I knew I was done with that class for good,” Brown said. “As much as I didn’t like it, it was worth it. I would definitely do it again.”