They say that hate is a strong word. I say that sometimes, it fits the bill perfectly.
I hate eight-week classes. I appreciate the sentiment behind them: it helps students get more credits faster, speeding up the graduation process, but it is seriously not worth it.
My first experience with an eight-week class was the first eight weeks of last fall semester. I loved the subject, and the professor was great, but I still hated the class. We had two papers due every week and met twice a week for two and a half hours.
My second experience was the second half of last fall semester; the subject was confusing, the professor was great, but I can’t tell you anything I retained from that class. We had exams every other week, so I was studying just to pass.
That’s the problem with eight-week classes. Professors are forced to try to cram 16 weeks of information into half the time, and it doesn’t work. The workload is overwhelming, being in a class for two and a half hours twice a week makes it hard to concentrate and you’re working to pass, not to learn.
I’ve taken six-week courses over the summer that were perfectly fine; but they were designed to be six weeks in the first place. I understand that the concept of eight-weeks is new to SFA; but right now, just cramming the same workload into a shorter amount of time isn’t working. Maybe with some time, and figuring out what doesn’t work to get to what does work, eight-week courses will be better.