LA CROSSE, Wis., November 28, 2023 – Western Technical College announced today the transition from the current 15-week course schedule to a 7-week schedule, beginning in the Summer 2024 term.
With the change, each academic year will include six 7-week session: two in fall term, two in spring term, and two in summer term, with a short break period in between sessions. Students will remain enrolled in the same number of credits in each 15-week trimester but will take fewer classes at one time.
“There were several factors that led to this decision,” said Western President Roger Stanford. “After reviewing national, state, and our own data, we have found shorter course periods help students remain on the path to academic success. Part-time students can focus on one to two courses at a time while earning more credits each term. Full-time students can spread out their workload more evenly throughout a term.”
Over the past two years, Western instructors and academic leadership have been reviewing and optimizing their program curriculum for the new format to ensure academic success.
“We did not simply condense existing courses,” explained Stanford. “We took a close look at program outcomes, teaching methods, and the best ways to infuse support services to create the best learning environment for students. This was a holistic approach.”
The college has also been working with employers to ensure the skills and training match the needs of the workforce. The shift to shorter class sessions benefits both students and employers. It allows students to build on their academic momentum, complete their education in a shorter time frame, and connect with jobs sooner.
While the majority of courses are transitioning to the new schedule, some courses will stay in their original format due to clinical or accreditation requirements.