Summer school abroad is a unique opportunity to combine learning a foreign language and studying additional disciplines with having holidays in the univesity campus. A student finds him/herself in a completely different environment, gets acquainted with other students, communicates with his/her teachers and peers in a foreign language every day, goes on various excursions and visits different events. Studying at summer schools is a real chance for junior school pupils and teenagers to plunge into the culture and traditions of another country and to improve the knowledge of a foreign language significantly.
The estimated cost of studying at summer schools abroad
|The USA||Harvard Summer School||3 weeks||Half board||4–18 years old||8,500 USD|
|The USA||Loomis Chaffee||5 weeks||Full board||12–18 years old||10,660 USD|
|The USA||Rumsey Hall School||5 weeks||Full board||8–15 years old||13,700 USD|
|The United Kingdom||Magdalene College||2 weeks||Full board||16–19 years old||3,970 USD|
|The United Kingdom||Wellington College||3 weeks||Full board||14–17 years||5,240 USD|
|Canada||Bodwell High School||From 2 weeks||Full board||13–17 years old||3,500 USD|
|France||HEC Paris Summer School||2 weeks||Accommodation only||From 17 years old||2,846 USD|
Summer schools at colleges and universitiesIn the summer prestigious colleges and universities open doors for junior and senior high school students from all over the world, organizing summer schools and special courses that help students to adapt to the life in a new country, to plunge into the university lifestyle and to experience a unique campus atmosphere. Summer schools students have the opportunity to use all the facilities, to attend lectures and seminars, to conduct research in laboratories and to visit university libraries as current students do.
A student must know a foreign language at least at the B2 level to attend summer school. The summer school curriculum includes a language learning and certain disciplines studying that are of interest to a student, for example, mathematics, international economics, world finance, introduction to business, commerce and diplomacy, etc. Those pupils who like and have a gift for humanities can combine language learning with the study of philosophy, world history, anthropology, fine arts, dances, etc. This is the main difference between summer schools and summer language courses, since the latter are mainly aimed at improving the student’s language skills. In addition, it is possible to enroll on language courses even if you are an absolute beginner and do not know a foreign language at all, which is unacceptable for summer schools.
Schools at universities and colleges offer a wide range of programmes that cover a variety of specialties: from technical ones and humanities to architecture, fashion and photography. Summer schools students do not spend all their days only sitting at their desks because summer school organizers lay on some entertainment for them, offer excursions to the major places of interest and other universities.
During the period of study at a summer school, students learn more about the host country, its culture and national features, get acquainted with foreigners, improve their command of a foreign language and learn a lot about their future specialization. After leaving a school each student receives a certificate, which in future can make the resume of a future entrant who wants to enter a top foreign university stand out from all the rest.
Summer schools for primary school pupilsFor primary school students, summer schools offer rich study programmes of English, several basic disciplines (they are usually mathematics, computer work, academic skills development) and optional ones (arts and crafts, music classes, an additional foreign language, acting technique, dances, fine art, etc.).
Classes are held in small groups of 6–10 people, which allows a teacher to pay attention to each child in the group. Schools impose not too high language requirements on their little students, the level of the foreign language knowledge will increase with each new lesson.
The courses duration and intensity depends on a particular summer school, but the preparatory programmes involve mainly a period of study lasting 2–8 weeks with 20 lessons per week. As a rule, summer schools have excellent sports facilities, which makes classes even more fascinating. Most of centers have athletics and fine art clubs. Often there is an indoor ice rink or a swimming pool on the school premises.
In summer schools, children live and study in accordance with a precise timetable. A certain amount of time is dedicated to each lesson. Homework takes at least two hours a day. Schoolchildren make good use even of their spare time: they practise the foreign language, play on the sports ground under the control of their teachers, join different hobby clubs and go on interesting excursions at weekends.
Summer schools for senior high school studentsHigh school students may expect no less exciting study and holiday programme. In summer schools, high school students will work in a team, will learn how to make reports, presentations and present scientific projects, will improve their foreign language communication skills, will develop the ability to think and discuss and to take an extraordinary approach to ordinary problems solving.
Summer schools abroad offer a wide variety of education courses: business, world economics, finance and banking, in-depth study of foreign languages, as well as of humanities and technical disciplines. Teenagers have the opportunity to choose the desired study programme: several basic and additional subjects. As a rule, compulsory subjects include mathematics, English and 1–2 more subjects. The remaining disciplines can be chosen by students themselves. It can be courses of fine art, music, IT, another foreign language, clay sculpting, acting technique, etc.
Summer schools teachers take a non-standard approach to teaching: teenagers develop critical thinking skills, the ability to work in a team, to show their leadership qualities with the help of debates, discussions and participation in scientific projects. Classes are held in small groups of 10–12 people, which allows a teacher to find an individual approach to each student.
Each summer school develops its own study course of a certain duration and intensity, the programme is usually designed for 2–8 weeks, there are also semester programs (16–18 weeks). The intensity of classes depends on the students’ age and basic knowledge. High school students spend mainly at least 20 hours a week studying in classrooms.
School students study hard and with diligence, but they also find enough time for entertainment and going on excursions. As a rule, there are green areas for playing frisbee, doing yoga and fitness exercises, swimming pools, stadiums for playing football and other sports games on the summer school premises. The excursion programmes include visits to local places of interest, amusement parks, museums, cinemas and even shopping.
In some summer schools related to well-known universities, the study programme is aimed at preparing students for admission to prestigious universities. For example, at Berkeley University summer school, students choose several major subjects, two additional subjects and one seminar. The major subjects are English, business, economics principles, archeology, robotics, introduction to medicine, psychology and even short films shooting. Of course, the choice of basic disciplines depends on the teenager’s future specialty.
As for additional subjects, summer school students can choose several disciplines from the following list: courses on public speaking skills, essay writing, psychopathology, marketing and the digital world, urban design, introduction to genetics, video games design, SAT exam preparation, etc. Students can get some rest from studying at special seminars, which include individual fitness classes, participation in the debate club, learning the art of photography, attending acting courses and so on. As a rule, summer programmes for the schoolchildren preparation for their admission to universities are designed for teenagers studying at 9-11 forms.
What is included in the compulsory subjects list?
What is included in the course price?
- Classes at a summer school
- Summer school residence or host family accommodation
- Textbooks and stationery for work in the classroom
- Cultural activity (the basic package usually includes several excursions, for visiting other events you will have to pay extra)
- Test taking to determine the level of the foreign language knowledge
- Medical insurance
- Evening events and activities on the summer school premises
- Additional courses (dances, fine art, origami, etc.)
- Summer school leaving certificate
- Visa support (consular fee payment)
- Travelling by air to the destination
- Searching for and booking a course services
- IELTS, TOEFL or other language exams taking
- Pocket money for a student (about 700 USD)
Accommodation options during the period of study at the summer school
Host family accommodation is an excellent opportunity to practise the language being studied in a variety of everyday situations, as well as to learn more about the culture and traditions of the host country. The only detail that should be mentioned: not everyone can share the house with strangers of a different age, so this option is not suitable for everyone. This should be taken into consideration when you choose a course.