Have there been any studies done into the effect of having fewer classes per term on a student's comprehension of their mathematics course material? Also are there any examples of schools that have shorter class terms with fewer classes per term?
I was an undergraduate at a California State University where there are two 15-week terms per year, and each student takes five or six classes per term. Now I'm a graduate student at University of California campus where there are three 10-week terms per year, and students take about four classes per term. I've noticed that my own study habits and the attitudes of the students seem different at these two schools. I was wondering if this is just my perception, or just a result of the different culture at these two Universities, or if there is something more general that can be said here.
Specifically for mathematics, I think that among the classes in a typical undergraduate's schedule, their mathematics class is probably their least favorite. Then if an undergraduate has many classes per term, I'm worried that their least favorite class will get put on the back-burner and the student will tend to do the bare minimum to pass that class in favor of studying for classes they like more.