Academic Regulations & Procedures

Credit Unit

Federal policy defines a semester credit hour as the amount of work that reasonably approximates one hour (50 minutes) of classroom or direct faculty instruction and a minimum of two hours of out-of-class student work per week for 15 weeks. At least an equivalent amount of work is required for other activities established by the college including practica, private study, studio work, ensembles, lessons, tutorials, independent studies, and other academic work leading toward the award of credit hours.

Carleton College operates on a 3-term calendar (September-June). A term normally consists of 10 weeks of instruction and one week of exams. In accordance with federal policy, a standard, 6-credit course at Carleton College normally meets three times per week for 200 minutes per week or two times per week for 210 minutes per week. For courses carrying fewer than 6 credits, classroom and out-of-class student work expectations are reduced by the appropriate proportion.

A standard course is valued at 6 Carleton credits and is the equivalent of 3.334 semester hours or 5 quarter hours. Laboratory courses in the sciences are equivalent to courses at other colleges valued at 5 semester or 8 quarter hours. Carleton’s 210 credits required for graduation are equivalent to 117 semester credit hours or 175 quarter credit hours.

For: Faculty, Students

Last Reviewed: September 9, 2021

Maintained by: Office of the Provost