Credit Hour Policy

1.00 Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to define the amount of instruction and student work expected for each credit hour (or unit of credit).

This policy is intended to reflect the University’s commitment to the principles, goals, and ideals described in the CSU Monterey Bay Vision Statement, and to adhere to federal regulations under Section 600.2 and 600.24 of the Higher Education Act.

2.00 Definitions

Academic Engagement: Academic engagement may include but is not limited to: submitting an academic assignment, listening to class lectures or webinars (synchronous or asynchronous), taking an exam, participating in an interactive tutorial, contributing to an academic online discussion, initiating contact with a faculty member to ask a question about the academic subject studied in the course, or similar academic activity.

Academic Preparation: Preparation includes research, reading, study time, and completing assignments and projects.

Credit Hour: “Except as provided in CFR 668.8(k) and (l), a credit hour is a reasonable approximation of the student learning outcome equivalency of an amount of work in intended learning outcomes and verified by evidence of student achievement that is institutionally-established and reasonably approximates not less than—(1) One hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and a minimum of two hours of out of class student work each week for approximately fifteen weeks for one semester or the equivalent amount of work over a different amount of time; or (2) At least an equivalent amount of work as required in paragraph (1) of this definition for other academic activities as established by the institution including laboratory work, internships, practica, studio work, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours.”[1]

3.00 Distance Education Modalities

Courses offered online shall reflect CSU Monterey Bay’s academic standard, with one credit hour requiring 15 hours of academic engagement plus 30 hours of academic preparation. Courses will be consistent in terms of purpose, scope, quality, assessment, and expected learning outcomes with courses bearing the same code and/or number as similar courses from the same department and the same matriculation level.

3.10 Hybrid Courses

For hybrid courses where some face-to-face instruction has been replaced with an online component, the syllabus should communicate an expectation to students that they should plan on devoting a minimum of 45 hours per semester for each unit of credit through attending class, working online, and other preparation activities.

3.20 Fully Online Courses

For courses where all instruction is delivered online, the syllabus shall describe the activities that the student will be required to complete that reflect an equivalent investment of time as a face-to-face course. The total expected time should be a minimum of 45 hours per semester for each unit of credit through academic engagement and other preparation activities.

4.00 Credit Hour Confirmation

The Senate Curriculum Committee Council, in its review of all new and revised courses, shall confirm or deny the accuracy and appropriateness of course credit hours. College Deans and Department Chairs shall ensure compliance with the credit hour definitions in the scheduling of courses each term.

Annual assessment activities, as well as cyclical program reviews, provide opportunities for program faculty to review and to revise, as necessary, the units and corresponding workload for any given course.

5.00 Continuous Renewal

This policy shall be reviewed in ten years from its effective date to determine its effectiveness and appropriateness. This policy may be reviewed before that time as necessary.

s/ President Eduardo M. Ochoa

Effective Date: July 19, 2018

Certification of Process

Reviewed by: Matriculation Committee, Policy Facilitation Team, Educational Planning and Policy Committee, Academic Senate, Associated Students, Enrollment Services and Student Affairs Leadership Team, Academic Affairs Council, and Provost.

[1] https://ifap.ed.gov/dpcletters/attachments/GEN1106.pdf