One credit represents 30 hours of the average student’s time that includes work in and out of class to meet the intended course learning outcomes and which are verified by evidence of student achievement in a course.

When a course is offered over a ten-week term, one term credit is assigned in the following ratio of component hours per week devoted to the course of study:

  • lecture or seminar courses — one contact hour for each credit (two hours of outside work implied).
  • recitation courses — either one contact hour (two hours of outside work implied) or two contact hours (one hour of outside work implied) for each credit. Courses with multiple sections must have uniform recitation contact hours. Any changes to the recitation contact hours must be approved through a course change proposal.
  • laboratory or studio courses — two contact hours for each credit (one hour of outside work implied).
  • field-based courses (e.g., practicum, clinical, internship, externship) and other schedule types that do not have structured in-class meeting time (e.g., research, independent study, activity, project, experiential, reading and conference, thesis, discussion, and workshop) — three hours of work per week for each credit.

Hybrid courses combine asynchronous online and traditional in-person classroom instruction. With a hybrid course, the in-person contact hours are reduced from the baseline listed above for its schedule type while the asynchronous online engagement is increased as appropriate to the instructional context.

Online courses are delivered asynchronously and expect approximately 30 hours of student engagement with instruction, activity, and assignment per term for each credit.

Courses that are predominantly field trip based expect approximately 30 hours of student academic engagement per credit. The engagement hours should count only the hours when students are actively engaged in learning and should not include the travel time to and from the field trip site. For field trip courses where the primary engagement happens over a few consecutive days, such as a week or weekend, the academic engagement must cover the entire length of the term for student financial aid purposes. This can be accomplished via, but not limited to, pre- and post- field trip activities at the start and end of the term.

This policy applies to all credit-bearing courses regardless of their campus location and/or modality. Non-traditional courses require the same amount of student work per credit hour as traditional ten-week term courses. Any exception to the above requires a course change proposal and is subject to approval by the Faculty Senate Curriculum Council which may consider factors such as professional accreditation body requirements, regulatory factors, and unique pedagogical needs. The request for the exception will be validated by administrative units prior to review by Faculty Senate Curriculum Council. Academic units that receive an exception are expected to inform students of their non-standard credit hours before students enroll in the course or program so students can make an informed decision.

Reviewed By Approved By Date
Faculty Senate Curriculum Council 06/12/2023
Office of Academic Programs and Assessment 01/25/2018
Faculty Senate Curriculum Council 03/13/1995