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Our online Winter Intersession option becomes popular with students

Nearly 1,000 students enrolled this past session, beginning classes on December 19 and finishing up three weeks later, earning anywhere between 1 and 5 credits during winter break.

Charlene Lattea
Feb 6, 2023

Two female students in the snow.

Winter Intersession, the accelerated learning option that WVU Online began in 2017, has been growing faster than anyone ever expected, with enrollments almost quadrupling since it began six years ago.

"We have discovered that students seem to love being able to focus on one course at a time," Assistant Provost for Online and Continuing Professional Education Julie Thalman said. "As a result, Winter Term been growing steadily, year by year, as more and more students see the value of completing a course in just three weeks' time."

Who takes Winter Intersession?

Thalman said students taking part in the program generally have a high GPA and are looking to get ahead or graduate early, although the program is also valuable for students who need to make up a class or boost their grade point average. This year, more seniors took advantage of Winter Intersession and 62% of the students enrolled were from out of state.

"Additionally, the fact that the classes are all online really helps," Director of Student Support Services for WVU Online Tammy Bishoff, said. "This means students don’t have to miss any winter fun or holiday activities while also taking a class. However, that doesn’t mean that the courses aren't just as challenging as the ones they take during the regular semester. They have to be motivated to take part in Winter Intersession."

As a matter of fact, although more seniors took advantage of Winter Intersession, the three-week long courses also saw an increased freshman interest, with the remaining 40% made up of sophomores and juniors.

What kinds of courses can you take?

Furthermore, due to increased demand, the program added six new classes to its course list, which has enough variety to offer something for any undergraduate student looking to make the most of the winter break.

Some of the most popular courses this year included introductory courses in sociology, human nutrition, geology and anthropology, as well as business courses such as principles of marketing, contemporary business strategy and supply chain management.

In conclusion, Thalman said there is another opportunity coming up for students to earn credits within a three-week, fully online accelerated learning option. Maymester, which returns May 8-26, allows students to get some classes out of the way early and still have time to enjoy the summer.

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