Spring Term

Spring Term makes in-depth study of a single subject as well as traveling and exploring new cultures easy.

What’s Spring Term? Alma has a 4-4-1 academic calendar, so after fall and winter terms, you have the opportunity to focus on one course topic for the entire month of May. We call this month “Spring Term.”


Alma students are required to complete two Spring Term courses to graduate from Alma College. One course of the pair must be an “S” course that takes advantage of the unique format of spring term via the pedagogical methods used, the skills developed or enhanced, or other learning experiences afforded to our students.

Examples of an “S” course could include, but are not limited to: immersion in a secondary language, crossing geographical boundaries, exploring cultural/social/ethnic/economic differences outside the classroom, and applied experiences requiring extended daily interactions with instructors. Internships do not satisfy the “S” requirement.

While Spring Term also has many exciting on-campus options, approximately one-third of the courses include travel. The best part? The courses offered, as well as the travel locations, change each year. This means you could be in London one year and in Hong Kong the next!

Not only do you have fun and earn college credit during Spring Term, you also have the chance to bond with your professor and fellow students. You also benefit from the expertise of the faculty member who travels with you, as an Alma professor leads each travel course.

“For me, the greatest educational benefit of Spring Term is the amount of time that professors and students have to devote to an academic topic,” says psychology professor Marc Setterlund. “It’s an opportunity for students to get to know and interact with their professors, and for professors to get to know their students.”