University of Maine introduces Winter Session

For the 2015-2016 academic year, the University of Maine will be including a winter session to supplement the spring and fall sessions. Courses will begin on Dec. 28, and conclude on Jan. 15.

According to the University of Maine Winter Session website, students are allowed to take a maximum of four credits during the winter session. Credits earned during the winter session will be credited to the Spring term for all academic affairs purposes, such as grading and dean’s list consideration.

New students may register in person, by mail or via an online registration form. Current students of UMaine can register via MaineStreet, with help being provided Division of Lifelong Learning (DLL) Advising Center.

The session will be comprised solely of online courses. Monique LaRocque, associate provost at DLL, said this new winter session will help students keep on track with their degree, while enjoying their break.

“The goal of online is so that students can still go home for the holiday break and be with family and friends, while taking 3 credits to work towards their degree,” LaRocque said.

The DLL’s initiative, called “Think 30”, encourages students to stay on track with their degree by taking 30 credit hours per year, allowing for graduation in four years. Many of the courses in the winter session satisfy general education requirements essential to prompt graduation.

“We hope that many students will work towards completing 30 credits per year as this will greatly reduce their student debt over time,” LaRocque said. “The Winter Session offers a number of gen ed courses that students can take over the Winter Session and continue to make progress towards their degree.”

There is no figure for the amount of students that are interested in the first ever winter session, but LaRocque said she anticipates some participation.

“As this is the first time we are offering an online [winter session], we are not sure how many students will take advantage of this term,” Larocque said. “We anticipate around more than 300 students. “

Financial aid for winter courses will be included in the Spring awards. Aid for the winter session will be disbursed no earlier than Jan. 11, according the Maine website.

There are other campuses in the University of Maine System that offer winter sessions similar to this one. LaRocque said UMS campuses are looking to integrate their programs in sessions to come.

“There are other campuses within the UMS that offer [a] winter session. We will likely coordinate our approach to Winter Session across the campuses for Winter Session 2017.“

Registration for winter courses will begin on Oct. 26. A comprehensive list of courses offered, 21 in total, is available online.

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