Rule XX: Credit Hour
A. Calculating Classroom (Or Direct Faculty Instruction) Credit Hours in the Semester Residential Program
- Exam Classes. For those classes that require written exams (including multiple choice exams) or an assigned final paper.
- Calculating time. To calculate total classroom or direct faculty instruction time (not including written examinations or final papers), the Registrar schedules each class to meet for a minimum 50 minutes for each credit hour over 14 sessions per credit (regardless of the length of the term). Any session missed for illness, weather, or other cancellation will be made up to ensure the 14 per-semester course requirements.
- Scheduling flexibility. Each semester the Registrar will schedule each course in a schedule slot that allows faculty to meet a 60-minute hour if the faculty member chooses. If the faculty chooses to meet for a 60-minute hour, the faculty will hold 12 sessions per credit. If the faculty member chooses to meet for 50-minute hours, then the faculty will hold 14 sessions per credit. It is the faculty member’s responsibility to ensure each class meets for the minimum seat time required for each credit.
- Exams. After each Term or Semester of instruction, examination periods are scheduled over the course of two weeks.
- If a comprehensive final exam is given (in class or take-home), it shall be scheduled during the examination period for at least 60 minutes per credit. If multiple assessments are given throughout a course, the allotted time for the aggregate of the assessments, including the final examination, must total at least 60 minutes per credit. Faculty members may, at their discretion, require additional time for completion of an examination.
- Classroom time for legal writing courses and seminars may be scheduled so that class meeting times may vary from week to week, so long as the total of classroom meeting times, including student conferences, is at least the equivalent of 50 minutes per credit multiplied by 14 and the final paper or writing project requires at least 60 minutes per credit to complete.
- Non-Exam Schedule Courses. Those courses do not require written examinations or final papers.
- Calculating time. To calculate total classroom or direct faculty instruction time (not including written examinations or final papers), the Registrar schedules each class to meet for a minimum 50 minutes for each credit hour over 14 sessions per credit (regardless of the length of the term). Any session missed for illness, weather, or other cancellation will be made up to ensure the 13 per-semester course requirements.
- Scheduling flexibility. Each semester the Registrar will schedule each course in a schedule slot that allows faculty to meet for a 60-minute hour if the faculty member chooses. If the faculty chooses to meet for a 60-minute hour, the faculty will choose between holding the minimum 13-sessions. If the faculty chooses to meet for a 50-minute hour, the faculty will meet hold 14 sessions. It is the faculty member’s responsibility to ensure each class meets for the minimum seat time required for each credit.
- Block or irregularly scheduled classes. For courses that do not meet on a weekly basis, the total hours of classroom and out-of-class student work shall total at least 42.5 hours per credit.
- Make up class. Any faculty member who must miss a regularly scheduled class session for any reason must schedule a make-up class of equal time, live or on-line.
B. Calculating Classroom (or Direct Faculty Instruction) Credit Hours in the Immersion Residential Program.
- Aligned with full term residential classes, Intensive Residential Program classes must meet minimum in-class and out-of-class hours. We hold two types of Immersion courses:
- Immersion courses that are integral to another course. These semester-long residential or Hybrid JD courses will include required Immersion seat-time. In residential courses, the Immersion component will be calculated by the faculty member and the Registrar to ensure that the minimum number of in-person hours are met across the semester. In the Hybrid JD time, this required Immersion component will be determined by the Hybrid JD office, in keeping with the ABA variance governing the program.
- Stand-alone Immersion courses. These classes, in which the seat-time requirement, follow the process set out for Block or irregularly scheduled classes, in part I.B.3, above.
C. Calculating Out-Of-Class Student Work Hours
- Course reading and preparation. Faculty shall require outside student work that reasonably approximates a minimum of 120-minutes per course credit hour per week, multiplied by 15. That outside work may include, but is not limited to: reading assignments, additional reading of treatises and course related materials, case briefing, written assignments other than examinations, problem sets, participating in out-of-class simulations and role playing exercises, research assignments, posting to an on-line discussion board, court or other observations, meetings with the instructor, practice questions and practice exams, CALI exercises, participating in study groups, review sessions, and other work that assists in the comprehension of course content, such as outlining and studying for examinations. The criteria for estimating out of class work will be set by the Faculty.
- Syllabus. Readings and other assignments shall be indicated on the course syllabus
- Record keeping. All faculty shall submit their syllabi to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs or a designee. In so doing, the course instructor certifies that the class time and outside work assigned reasonably approximates the requirements of Standard 310(b)(1).
- The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs shall keep all course syllabi on file and review them on a regular basis to determine whether assignments and outside work complies with Standard 310(b)(1).
D. Calculating Credit Hours for asynchronous Hybrid JD or Online Learning Classes
- Students may receive credit to the extent allowed by ABA Standards for asynchronous online learning courses that are in compliance with ABA Standards or the Hybrid JD program ABA variance.
- Online learning courses shall require at least 42.5 hours of calculated direct student work per credit.
- The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs or a designee shall collect and review course development seat-time calculations and syllabi for online courses, to ensure that developed courses and courses as delivered comply with Standard 310(b).
E. Calculating Credit Hours for Clinics and Residencies
- Students must complete:
- 42.5 hours for 1 credit;
- 85 hours for 2 credits;
- 127.5 hours for 3 credits;
- 170 hours for 4 credits;
- 255 hours for 6 credits;
- 282.5 hours for 9 credits;
- 467.5 hours for 11 credits;
- 510 hours for 12 credits;
- 552.5 hours for 13 credits; and
- 595 hours for 14 credits
- Students enrolled in clinical courses or Residencies must complete required hours and submit time keeping records in accordance with established clinic or Residency program.
- Credit may be withheld for any student who fails to comply with this rule.
F. Calculating Credit Hours for Independent Research Projects or Directed Study
- Hours earned for Independent Studies. Students may do Independent Study for credit. In the usual case, credit will be for one, two or three credits. Students must complete a minimum of 42.5 hours of work for one credit, 85 hours of work for two credits, and 127.5 hours of work for 3 credits.
- Registration and Certification of Independent Study Work. Students undertaking an Independent Research Project or Directed Study and the supervising faculty member shall submit a Certification form at the end of the project, which certifies the number of hours the student has spent on the project or study. See Rule VIII. The Registrar’s office will retain the forms.
- Credit may be withheld for any student who fails to comply with this rule.
G. Calculating Credit Hours for Journal and Law Review Participation
- Minimum credits. Students must complete a minimum of 42.5 hours of work for one credit and 85 hours of work for two credits.
- Criteria. The criteria for estimating Journal and Law Review work will be set by the Faculty Advisors and Editors-in-Chief of the Journal and Law Review.
H. Calculating Credit Hours for Co-Curricular Competitions (e.g., Moot Court, and Trial Advocacy Competitions)
- Credit option. Students may participate in co-curricular competitions without receiving credit. If the student wishes to receive academic credit, the student shall do so through an Independent Research Project.
- Credit hour requirements. Students seeking credit shall submit timesheets to their competition coach(es) or the faculty advisor to the Moot Court Advisory Board or a designee every two weeks. Students must complete a minimum of 42.5 hours of work for one credit, 85 hours of work for two credits, and 127.5 hours of work for three credits.
- Credit may be withheld for any student who fails to comply with this section.
I. Calculating Credit Hours for Courses Taken at Other ABA Accredited Law Schools
- Study away. As a condition of approval of a student’s application to take classes at another ABA Accredited Law School, an official from the school offering the course must certify in writing to the Vice Dean for Students, the Registrar, or their designees that the credits for the course(s) to be taken comply with Standard 310(b).
- Transfer credits. As a condition of approval of transfer credits, an official from the school from which the applicant is seeking to transfer must certify in writing to the Registrar and the Vice Dean for Students that the credits for the courses taken comply with Standard 310(b).
J. Course Approval
- Course Proposals. All proposals for new courses must include a paragraph justifying the number of credits to be awarded, including a description of both classroom hours and the estimate of out-of-class work. The Curriculum Committee must assess this information when determining how many credit hours should be granted for the course or other academic activity. In approving new courses, the Curriculum Committee will determine whether the number credits to be awarded complies with Standard 310(b).
- Record keeping. The Chair of the Curriculum Committee and the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs shall keep these forms on file.
Appendix: Credit Hour Time Requirement
Classroom or Direct Faculty Instruction Hours (including exam time)* (50 x 15 divided by 60) multiplied by Out of Class Hours (120 X 15 divided by 60) equals total hours per credit hour.
*Not all courses are required to have this amount of “seat time,” but all courses must meet the overall hours in the Total Hours Per Credit column.