Credit Hours & Attendance

Saginaw Valley State University offers courses on a semester basis. Each course carries a specific number of credits based on the number of instructor-student contact hours and study hours required each week per semester.

Saginaw Valley State University complies with the federal credit hour definition: “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” 34CFR 600.2 (22/2/2010).

Thus, a three-credit lecture will meet three hours per week with the expectation that students will do a minimum of six hours of out-of-class work per week. The semester work load for a three-credit class will be 45 hours of classroom or direct instruction and 90 hours of out-of-class work.

In laboratory courses, the course work is considered to be all in class; thus, laboratory courses that meet for three hours per week are valued at one credit hour.

Short courses are prorated so they complete the equivalent amount of work to semester length courses.

While SVSU does not have a university attendance policy, many faculty members do have attendance policies for their classes. The faculty and administration recognize that student success in university courses requires a commitment to attend and participate in course sessions and to engage the course materials outside of class. This means coming to class prepared, completing assignments, and reaching out to faculty members after class and during office hours for discussion and clarification.

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