As St. Johns and Duval County are about finished with the school year for 2011, many high school seniors and juniors are debating what their next step in education will be. Some are still deciding what direction they want to take in life for a future career.
Locally, Flagler College, a small private college, has added more course options for students. St. Johns Community College has many classes to choose from, as well as University of North Florida.
With so many choices, it can be hard to narrow down what courses you need to take this semester or throughout your college career. Yet there are some things you need to keep in mind when it comes time to sign up for courses, whether it’s for a full semester or just for the summer.
If you’ve never been the type who’s good at choosing courses, use these pointers to guide you through the process and help you choose courses that will best serve your major and your long-term goals.
Know the requirements. First and foremost, you need to look at the requirements for your major. Some classes are only offered in specific semesters and may be prerequisites for other courses you’ll need to take, so getting them out of the way when you can is essential to keeping on track for graduation. If you’re unsure of your major’s requirements, talk to the department head or your academic advisor.
Focus on classes for your major first. The first classes you add into your schedule should be ones that help you complete requirements for your major or minor. You don’t want to drag out taking required courses, so get as many out of the way as you can. You also want to make sure you’re signing up for at least one course that meets your school’s general education requirements if you haven’t already taken care of these.
Look through the course catalog. If you’re unsure of what courses to take, look through the course catalog. Take time to mark classes that seem interesting to you and figure out which would best fit into your current schedule.
Fill in your schedule with electives. Whatever hours you have left should be taken up with electives. In general, students who are attending full time should not take less than 15 hours of classes, so always sign up for at least that much if you want to graduate in four years. Electives can be classes that are just for fun or on topics that supplement what you’re learning in your classes for your major.
Consider the professors. Finally, find out a bit about the professors who are teaching the courses. The most interesting class in the world can put you to sleep if it doesn’t have a great professor teaching it.
If you’re still struggling with choosing courses, don’t be afraid to ask for help. You academic advisors are there to aid you in working through issues like this and can help you to plan out this semester or all of those which you have left.
Source: Online Colleges