Definition of Credit Hours

“Voorhees University adheres to the federal definition of a credit hour with respect to courses offered face to face, in a hybrid format, and online, as developed in 2010 and published in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Title 34, Part 600.02.  A “credit hour” is defined as the amount of work represented in intended learning outcomes and verified by evidence of student achievement that is an institutionally established equivalency that 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 hour of credit for didactic instruction, 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, practice, studio work, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours. 
The University offers semester-based credit courses in 15-week-semester and 8-week-block sessions within the lecture (face-to-face), hybrid, and distance learning (online) modalities. One (1) hour of credit is granted for each hour of direct instructional time in face-to-face, hybrid, and distance education courses, creating a 1:1 contact hour to credit hour ratio. Three-credit lecture (didactic) courses require a minimum of 45 class contact hours. For every hour of classroom instruction each week, students are expected to engage in a minimum of two hours of independent learning activities (e.g., reading, research, completing assignments, studying).  The formula for converting classroom instructional time and laboratory time to the number of credit hours awarded is the number of hours of classroom instructions per week+ number of lab or practicum hours divided by 2 = total credit hours awarded. 
One credit hour for distance learning is defined as three (3) hours of instruction and/or student work per week that leads to equivalent learning outcomes required for an on-campus course. Three credit-hour courses taught in the eight-week format require a minimum of 12 hours of student effort and 300 minutes of contact hours per week. 
The amount of time that should be offered in a course per week will vary with the length of the course. 
Time per week over 15 weeks: 
1 Credit Course: 1 hr. direct instruction, 2 hrs. student work
3 Credit Course: 3 hrs. direct instruction, 6 hrs. student work 
Time per week over 8 weeks: 
1 Credit Course: ~2 hrs. direct instruction, 4 hrs. student work
3 Credit Course: ~6 hrs. direct instruction, 12 hrs. student work