Not proper idiomatic english here. I reckon 'the course is two semesters long' is a lot better.
Maybe The course is two trimesters long or It's a two-trimester course would be better English translations. But you can't change "trimestre" to semester since they mean different things.
Semester = Semestre and Trimester=Trimestre
We do have a direct translation for the word "lasts" which is dura (think of the English word duration), which might be a reason they wouldn't accept it. But it's so close.
If a trimestre is a three month period, what is a semestre? As someone mentioned, we don't use these so much in British English, but as I understand it, in English 'semester' is used when something is divided into two periods (two semesters, commonly used in university courses) and a trimester when it's split into three (common when talking about stages during pregnancy). Then it's quarters if it's split into four (often used to split a year into three month periods) It's interesting if the meaning is different in Portuguese!
Right! Half a "school" year. But a school year is about nine months in the US; thus the confusing meaning. :-)
Which makes a trimester three months, and a semester 4.5. I've encumbered both.
AlexTheTutor, trimestre é usado no Brasil. Trimester is not a common word is it?
This is American English, semester is not a word used in England. We use 'Term' To describe a portion of the school year. English people would understand you, however :). Also eighth 'grade' is American, in English we say 'year 8' although I am not sure year 8 is equivalent to eighth grade, I suspect it is not! :)
Trimester isn't common in English. In the US, these academic periods are called "quarters", and are less common than they used to be.
A quarter is a fourth of a school year, a trimester is a third. Which is a Brazilian trimestre?
(My middle school have grades every quarter, but complicated matters for 5th and 6th graders by rotating us into new fine arts courses every trimester.)
A trimester is a three-month period. There are four of them in a calendar year, making them largely equivalent to a quarter or a season. If your school counts three of them, it is counting three terms of about three months, and leaving about three months total holidays.
How can something be two trimesters? I thought a 'semester' was 1 out of a total of 2 terms of a course, and trimester 1 out of 3 terms of a course. If it lasts for 2 trimesters then what happened to the third trimester....? Does this make any sense?!
Ohhh yeah I see... I guess in certain contexts it could make sense. And I'm being pedantic anyway because grammatically the sentence is fine and can be applied to saying 'two semesters' or 'three trimesters' once you know the structure.
A common misconception.
A semester is a six-month period. A trimester is a three-month period. A quadrimester is a four-month period.
Yes, you would think that a semester is 6 months. However, in the U.S. education system, the school year is 9 months, and then there is a 3-month summer break. So a semester is half a school year, which is actually 4 1/2 months, not 6 months. The college semester is even shorter, only 4 months.
No. If the course had two semesters, it would last twelve months (one year). This course has two trimesters, so it lasts six months (half as long).
Pregnancy lasts three trimesters or 1.5 semesters or 0.75 years, i.e. nine months.