Summer Session Offers Unique Academic Opportunities

January 04, 2018

By Monica Parikh, Director of Summer Session 

2017 ART 111 Figure Drawing Art Studio

Summer Session 2018 courses are now available at, so when slugs think about winter, spring, and next fall, they can integrate the ~300 summer courses into their plans.

It’s helpful for students to know now about summer courses, costs, aid, and reliable housing. Last year, over 4,500 students used summer to make real progress, complete a minor, or took advantage of small upper division classes to bond with their faculty.

Summer Session’s priority is offering courses that are in high demand or fulfill major or general education requirements that students need to graduate in subjects such as Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Math, and Organic Chemistry. This summer features numerous experiential and service learning opportunities, such as Kresge Garden Co-op, Grant Writing, and other unique opportunities through the Colleges which can be hard to get into the rest of the year. Departments like Art, Film, History, and Literature lift prereqs so non-majors can enjoy their appealing classes. New faculty-led summer abroad programs set sail too, like the exciting Law and Politics in Berlin and Prague, Printmaking in Tokyo, and Anthropological Food Study in Italy.

There will also be 34 completely online courses, up from 20 last year.

We understand staying in Santa Cruz is not an option for everyone. By expanding our online offerings, students can return home, work, or travel, and still make degree progress year round. Most courses are five weeks - the majority of UCSC students take one class in each session. Five weeks go fast, but a focus on one subject with small class size leads to high success rates. As Baskin Engineering offers more summer courses, there are more 8-week classes, while Physics and Writing use the 10-week session.

Summer Session Staff pound the pavement to make summertime more affordable. Financial Aid is available to eligible students, including Pell Grants and the $2200 University Grant. UCSC now offers a $680 rebate to students who complete 15 or more credits (the Ambitious Summer Award). Housing prices are half the fall, winter, spring rate. And out-of-state students pay the same tuition rate as in-state for summer quarter. UCSC Staff and Faculty are welcome in summer classes at half price, and many will be scheduled after 5pm like Creative Writing, music electives, and Improv.

Enrollment opens to all students on May 1.

Check out all courses at or contact the Summer Session office for more information: 831-459-5373 or

January 2018 Newsletter