Get a sneak peek into the fascinating world of neuroscience. Learn the basics of coding to get a head start on a career in software. Study constitutional law or even the art of fairy tales.

These are just a few of subjects you could delve into at one of the Harvard Summer School college programs for high school students.

Harvard Summer School offers hundreds of different classes on a wide range of topics—from art to STEM and everything in between. It’s the perfect way to explore a potential major or career path, get a head start on college prerequisites, or simply learn more about a topic that interests you.

Preview the Summer 2022 course catalog to find the courses you might enjoy. These and other popular courses fill up quickly, so once you’re accepted, be sure to register early for the course or courses you want.

Here are some of the most popular courses our students took over the summer in 2021. 

Most Popular Courses in the 2021 Pre-College Program

The Pre-College Program is an intensive two-week program in which students take one class that meets every day for three hours.

The course is ungraded, which means you can explore a topic that interests you and enjoy learning without the pressure of grades. 

In 2021, the top five most popular classes were:

Other interesting classes that ranked among the most popular included:

If you apply by the early application deadline, January 26, 2022 at noon ET, you get the first pick of courses when course registration for admitted students opens for the Pre-College Program on February 24, 2022. 

The course registration deadline for regular applicants receiving financial aid scholarships is April 8, 2022. Admitted students not receiving financial aid have until June or later depending on which session they’re attending; however, many popular courses may be waitlisted by that time.

Most Popular Courses in the 2021 Secondary School Program

The Secondary School Program (SSP) is a seven-week program that allows you to take one or two classes for college credit. In 2022, you’ll be able to participate in person as a residential or commuting student, or take courses entirely online. 

Courses are taught by Harvard College professors and invited faculty from universities around the world. 

In 2021, the most popular courses among high school students were:

Interested in social justice? Take a course on War Crimes, Genocide, and Justice [GOVT S-1732] or Economics of Inequality [ECON S-1320].

Perhaps you’d like to explore Writing about Social and Ethical Issues [EXPO S-20D], Justice: Ethics in an Age  of Pandemic and Racial Reckoning [GOVT S-1045], or The Culture of Capitalism [ENGL S-207].

The 2021 course catalog for the Secondary School Program offered almost 300 different courses to choose from, so if these courses don’t spark your interest, you will have plenty of options to choose from.

If you apply by the early application deadline, January 26, 2022 at noon ET, you get the first pick of courses when course registration for admitted students opens for the Secondary School Program on March 11, 2022. 

Be sure to refer often to the SSP calendar for key application and registration dates and deadlines.

What’s New for 2022 at Harvard Summer School?

Both the Secondary School Program and the Pre-College Program have exciting new courses for 2022!

New 2022 Career Pathways Courses at SSP

In addition to our full course catalog, the Secondary School Program is offering six new classes designed to help high school students explore potential career pathways.

In these small, intensive classes, students will explore an academic topic through real-world projects and guest speakers offering career insights.

These six new courses are:

New Course Options for 2022 in the Pre-College Program

Apply Now and Register Early

Applications for Harvard Summer School programs for high school students are open now. The new course catalog with the complete listing of possible courses for 2022 will be available in January.

Submitting your application to the Pre-College Program or Secondary School program is just the first step in your Harvard Summer School journey. Be sure to check on the application status frequently and to mark important dates on your calendar. 

Many of our classes—especially the popular ones—fill up quickly. Once you are accepted to the high school program of your choice, register for your course or courses as soon as possible to ensure that you don’t miss out on the opportunity to take your top choice.