Staving off the “Summer Slump” — What College Students Should Do To Stay Sharp

Unless they are unabashed bookworms, chances are students are looking forward to a relaxing summer break. Not only is the weather warmer, students have more time to do, well, whatever! No more tests to cram for, no more waking up early, and, in many cases, no more reading assignments–now students can read for their own enjoyment.

While students should enjoy some R&R this summer, they should be wary of the “summer slide.” No, we’re not talking about some intense water slide in Orlando; we’re talking about the science-based fact that students tend to backslide during the summer. 

Re-adjusting to the fall semester will be extra challenging if students neglect their study habits. Thankfully, there are many easy ways students can use technology to stay on top of their studies…even when it’s sunny outside! 

Staying on Task During The Sunny Season — Summer Slide Tips for Your Student

Become Bilingual! — The Benefits of Language Learning Apps 

In our digital world, bilingualism is no longer an option. Students who know a second language have far better job prospects than those who don’t. There are also plenty of studies that suggest bilingual people have superior concentration and memory skills.

Studying a new language is a superb way for students to stay mentally active during the summer. Plus, thanks to the wonders of the web, there are numerous free and fun ways to tackle this task. For instance, the popular app Duolingo offers dozens of language courses in an addicting game format. 

Reading and ‘Rithmatic — Maintaining A Strict Summer Schedule

Research into the “summer slump” suggests students can lose some of their reading and math skills when out of school. While most of these studies focus on elementary to high school students, they can spill over into college life. 

If students have particular issues with reading comprehension, writing, or math, it’s essential to create a regular schedule to brush up on these skills. While it may be a bit of a drag, there’s strong evidence that students who keep up with these skills could perform better next semester. 

To help keep them motivated, students should research games that teach essential math skills. A few apps that come to mind include Mathspace, Operation Math, and Brainly. 

As for reading, students should set aside at least one hour a day for quiet time. During this hour, parents can encourage their students to grab a cup of tea, sit back, and read “texts” in the “old school” style. No matter how much students enjoy iPads, scientific evidence suggests reading a paperback heightens concentration and comprehension skills. 

Make the Most Of MOOCs! 

For those who aren’t hip to technical lingo, “MOOCs” stands for Massive Open Online Courses. As the title suggests, these sites offer many e-learning seminars in a wide range of fields. 

What sets MOOCs apart from other learning platforms is that high-level institutions usually back them up. Many MOOCs offer college credits or accreditations that students can use in the real world. This is especially the case with well-respected MOOCs, like Coursera and EdX. 

So, if students want to earn a resume-boosting certification—or if they want to brush up on relevant skills—enrolling in a MOOC will be quite worthwhile. From art history to astrophysics, there’s bound to be something students are interested in on a MOOC.

Research Remote Internships

While coursework is the cornerstone of education, students also need real-world experience. Unfortunately, since the COVID-19 pandemic struck, it has been more challenging to find in-person internships. However, that doesn’t mean companies aren’t interested in hiring interns. In many cases, internship opportunities have gone virtual.

Yes, remote internships are a real thing, and they can offer students that real-world experience they crave. While it’s not the same as in-person training, these internship programs can offer valuable skills and connections for future success.

Students should spend some time researching what companies and industries now offer remote internship programs. If students can’t find information online, encourage them to seek help from their college’s career center. 

Keep Curiosity Alive During the Dog Days of Summer! 

While the “summer slump” is a real phenomenon, there are many actionable steps students could take to avoid backsliding. Many studies confirm that students who spend part of their summer refining their skills can reverse this trend. So, be sure to grab a book while lounging by those beautiful beaches!