How Night Classes Can Benefit College Students’ Schedules

by Ana Felce

Night classes are a great option for students who are working toward earning their undergraduate degree. These days, colleges offer a wide variety of class times, which affords students the flexibility to customize a schedule that works best for them.

If you’re returning to school after entering the workforce, or you don’t have the energy needed for early morning classes, then attending class in the evening could be a good fit for your schedule. Best of all, taking night classes offers a range of other benefits.

Getting Work Done on Your Schedule

If you work full-time, taking classes after business hours is a great way to maintain employment while earning your degree. Having a job no longer means giving up on your education. Evening classes are scheduled for times that are compatible with most professional work hours, so you can make it to class without affecting your standing at the office.

Even if you aren’t working, this kind of schedule might work for you if you tend to have more energy to focus during the evening. The trick to making it work is finding the time to study, and sticking with the routine.

Keep in mind, getting enough rest is important for your health. While factoring in a good night’s sleep, try out different study patterns to see what works best for you. If you’re a night owl, you may prefer reviewing material right after class. However, if you’re an early bird, you may do your best work at sunrise. Taking advantage of lunch breaks (and any available time between work and class) can help you create the right study schedule for you.

Longer but Fewer Classes, or Shorter but More?

When considering night classes, you’ll also want to think about what sort of frequency works for you. Would you prefer that your course offer one three-hour class, or two shorter classes each week? If each class meets just once a week, you can structure your schedule so you only have classes two or three days a week. This can allow you more time to study outside of class or to work, and to attend any other obligations you may have. However, it also means you have to be prepared to focus for longer stretches of time.

On the other hand, maybe you find three-hour classes to be too long, and lose focus after a certain length. In that case, consider filling your schedule with classes that meet two (or three) times a week but for shorter periods of time. This way, you’ll attend more classes during the week but break up the length of time you spend in the classroom.

Finding Time for an Internship

Another great advantage of taking classes at night is that you can use your free time during the day to get real work experience by completing an internship. Competition for internships typically ramps up during the summer months because many students don’t want to fall behind during the regular semester. If you take night classes, you can intern while you complete your courses, and still graduate on time.

Night classes might not be the best choice for everyone—but for working students or night owls, they can be a great option. In the end, you have to do what’s best for you. If you manage your time wisely and get plenty of rest, you can succeed in your classes and still conserve much of your day for other commitments.