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Top 10 classes to take over the summer

May 30, 2014
by Emily Cubbage

No matter what your major is, what credits you need, or what interests you, you'll find the perfect course to take over the summer on our -- or at least my -- definitive list of the best classes to complement your summertime mood.

All classes listed here are offered over the summer, and most do not require prerequisite classes to register. Register online through RAMweb.

1. Study Abroad (SA 482)

What better way to spend your summer than by immersing yourself in a new culture? Unfortunately the course itself is not for credit, but you can sign up for courses at your host college for credit while you explore a different country. Studying abroad is a great way to learn a new language and to test your limits for adventure, so pick your dream location and sign up!

2. Music Theory Fundamentals (MU 111)

If you have a creative mind and a song in your heart, this is the summer course for you. Take your musical skills to the next level by learning how to write and compose your own music. This course is perfect for aspiring musicians – if you’re going to start a band you’ll need some music written down to get you started. Or if you’re a solo act you can develop some songs to croon at Horsetooth while surrounded by admirers.

3. Introduction to Astronomy (AA 100)

This class offers the benefits of a total of 6 university credits for spending those cool summer nights stargazing. Not only do you take care of science and lab credit, but this course may just be the best way to spark a summer romance – even if that romance is with the heavens. In any case, you’ll be a wizard with a telescope by the end of the summer.

4. Forestry Field Measurements (F 230)

This is a unique course only offered in the summer. This is probably the class that Forestry majors most look forward to, but is offered to non-Forestry majors as well. Students in this class can learn how to use maps and compasses, as well as basics of photo interpretation and field measurements. You’ll get to spend four lab hours a week outdoors getting hands-on experience. This is a great class for anyone with an interest in the outdoors!

5. Any 100-level Health and Exercise Science Class

These classes include aerobics, soccer, self-defense, swimming, basketball, volleyball, tennis, golf, weight training, ice skating, and racquetball. There are also “special activities” classes, which include ultimate frisbee, triathlon, conditioning and fitness, and scuba diving. Take one of these classes to stay active and in shape over the summer. You’ll be rocking a beach-ready body in no time!

6. Introduction to Drawing (ART 135)

Let the beautiful Colorado summer landscape inspire you as you experiment with freehand drawing using a variety of mediums. This is a great course for both art and non-art majors who are looking to spend the summer in a state of concentrated relaxation as they turn their surroundings into art. For non-art majors, also consider taking the Art Studio Fibers course, which focuses on learning how to use fibrous materials to create artwork.

7. Landscape Architecture Career Exploration (LAND 180A)

If you have a serious interest in a career in landscape architecture, this intensive four-week course is perfect for you. Only offered in the summer, this course introduces students to the broad spectrum of the landscape architecture profession. Just be sure you can take on the commitment – the course is worth three credit hours and a staggering nine lab hours.

8. Horticultural Science (HORT 100)

This is a basic course that is fun and informative.  Students can earn lab and course credit learning how to make plants grow. You don’t have to be scientifically-minded to enjoy spending lab time tending to plants over the summer.  Previous students in the course said it was more practical and fun than Chemistry, and easier to maintain your GPA.

9. Understanding Dance (D 110)

No matter how uncoordinated you may think you are, you can enjoy this class for non-dance majors. In addition to some history of dance and an examination of different styles, students participate by learning basic dance movements. This class would be fun for anyone who used to dance or always wanted to; perhaps dancing could be your new hobby!

10. First-Year Spanish I (LSPA 105)

Complement the summer heat by learning the basics of the hottest language in the world: Spanish. No previous study in Spanish is necessary, and by the end of the summer you’ll be able to make conversation with a patient Spanish-speaker. Not only is Spanish one of the most useful languages to know, but studies show that learning a new language can positively affect cognitive abilities by improving attention and task-switching capacities. Take Spanish to learn a useful skill and stay sharp over the summer.