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Secondary School Program Courses and Subjects

The application for Summer 2024 is now open.

  • Teacher speaking to class.

    Learn from inspiring faculty. Our courses are taught by Harvard faculty, who teach many of the same courses to Harvard College students during the academic year, or by visiting faculty from respected institutions around the world.

  • Graduation cap and diploma.

    Earn college credit. At the completion of the program, you may request a transcript listing your coursework, grades, and number of credits earned.

  • Calendar.

    Enjoy a flexible schedule. On class days, you’ll be in class 2.5-3 hours per class but you get to plan the rest of your day like you would in college, balancing studying, daily tasks, and your social life.

Choosing the Right Courses for You — 4-week or 7-week?

While there are many similarities in the experience you’ll have in all our Harvard Summer School programs, each program has unique courses to choose from. You can only apply to one program, so make sure the program you apply to has the course or courses you want to enroll in.

96%

Students who said they had an easier time considering their future academic goals after attending the Secondary School Program.

How to Pick a 4-Week Course

  • Consider classroom hours: Students in the 4-Week program will be in class 2.5 hours, 4 days/week.
  • Choose from around 20 small, interactive courses: Connect with peers and special guest speakers as subjects such as business or writing come to life.

How to Pick a 7-Week Course

  • Consider classroom hours: 4-credit courses in the 7-Week program will meet for 3 hours, 2 days/week and 8-credit courses will meet 5 days/week.
  • Design Your Own Specialized Program: Choose one or two courses in a topic you are passionate about for a summer focused in one area of study.
  • Explore a Career Pathway: Get a fresh perspective on a field of work you might want to pursue with these unique small courses.
  • Take a Summer Seminar: Advance your researching and writing skills.
  • Browse all 2024 Courses: Search all 7-week SSP courses offered in 2023 to find what interests you.

Course Advising

Once you’re admitted, we can advise you on courses that will match your interests and goals. Reach out to us and we’ll advise you every step of the way.

Our office is open Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST. Contact us or email us to set up an advising appointment.

4-Week Courses

The 4-Week Secondary School Program is new for Summer 2024. View the full course catalog or browse by subject below.

Focus on an Area of Study over 7-Weeks

Unlike the 4-Week Secondary School Program and 2-Week Pre-College Program, 7-Week Secondary School Program students have the choice of taking two courses instead of only one. 

Taking two courses within the same area of study can allow you to gain a deeper understanding of an academic discipline to solidify your college path or even discover a new one.

  • Computer Science and Engineering: Have you always been fascinated by backend website development? Put your coding capabilities to the test this summer in a game development course, learn more about the future of augmented reality.
  • Justice, Ethics, and Human Rights: Are you passionate about justice and human rights? This summer, explore your inner humanitarian in courses that cover global justice, human ethics, and environmental ethics.
  • Economics, Finance, and Public Policy: Are you fascinated by the forces that shape our world and drive traditional public leadership? This summer, develop your financial and business savvy while honing your critical thinking and strategic planning skills.
  • Medical Sciences and Ethics: This summer, take a deep dive into courses that introduce you to topics in the health sciences. You can study the ethics of emerging technologies or examine the roots and impact of past — and current — epidemics.
  • Psychology and Neuroscience: Curious about what makes people tick? This summer, uncover the mysteries of the mind in these interdisciplinary courses on mind, brain, and behavior.

7-Week Summer Seminars

Summer Seminars, inspired by Harvard College’s renowned freshman seminars, are small classes for advanced high school students in the 7-Week Secondary School Program and undergraduate students to advance their researching and writing skills. Students can consult with and learn from instructors in a small-group or one-to-one format that lets them dig deep into a subject and build valuable expertise.

Explore a Career Pathway in 7 Weeks

Determining a career path can be a challenging, lengthy process and involves personal exploration as well as guidance from those with experience to share. That’s why we designed a special catalog of courses that allows students to study a topic of interest with the lens of how it might translate into future jobs.

In each Career Pathway course, students explore an academic topic in depth while working on projects that are mirrored in the real world. Guests in the classroom will both advise students and provide insights on their own career paths. Throughout the course students will reflect on what they have learned about their skills, interests, and future goals to come away energized about possible areas of study as well as potential career paths, and will have built valuable team-building and leadership skills.

Career Pathway courses are capped at between 15-25 students.

Browse 7-Week Courses by Subject Field

Computer Science, Math, and Engineering

Foreign Languages and Literatures