“A much better approach” to Winterim
Four weeks instead of two;
Four full pages of course offerings instead of a handful; and
For students, the opportunity for faster degree completion.
UW-Parkside's revamped winter interim, or "Winterim," term is, as Associate Provost Dennis Rome said, "a much better approach" to the break between fall and spring semester. This academic year, Winterim starts Jan. 7, 2013, and continues until Feb. 1 with a break to honor Dr. Martin Luther King whereas last year's Winterim session started Jan. 2 and ended Jan. 14.
The advantages of the new format go beyond the two extra weeks students will have to complete the courses.
"We are able to offer a larger variety of courses; courses that are part of the core curriculum for most majors so that students have a shorter time to [degree] completion," Rome said. "You will see more general electives offered during this time; as well as more core curriculum courses students need in order to graduate. So the focus is on degree completion."
The change also brings UW-Parkside's Winterim into better alignment with what other UW System schools are doing during fall/spring semester break. That should make it more attractive to students to take a course here when they return to the area during semester break from other system campuses.
"It's more in line with the other comprehensives in terms of students who are transferring credits. So we're becoming more normative in terms of our schedule," Rome said.
A complete list of UW-Parkside Winterim courses is available online.The Winterim section begins on Page 53.
One thing that won't change about winter interim is its importance as a place to experiment with new course ideas and new ways to deliver those new classes.
"This is a time for faculty to try out new courses, which has always been the intent [of Winterim], a chance to try out a different format," Rome said. "And some of the people we've trained to do online courses are looking at [Winterim] as a way of offering this new delivery, this online delivery. So, it still serves that purpose as well."
Rome said nearly 30 faculty members have been trained for online delivery. And he noted the online courses they offer are tailored to our students, not pre-packaged courses.All things considered, Rome believes students will find the new Winterim to be a major improvement. "This format is much more manageable and it makes more sense in this day and age in terms of the use of technologies and so on. It's a much better approach."