The semester credit hour is a unit by which an institution measures its course work. The value of a semester credit hour can be determined by time, the educational experience, and outside preparation by the student.
The following constitutes the definition of a semester credit hour for various modes of instruction offered at UMHB:
- At least fifteen (15) contact hours, as well as, a minimum of thirty (30) hours of student homework is required for each semester credit hour.
- Laboratory courses, with little outside work, require a minimum of forty-five (45) contact hours. If moderate outside work is required, thirty (30) contact hours are required.
- Art courses follow the recommendations for awarding credit as recommended by The National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) and the Texas Association of Schools of Art (TASA). In lecture courses, like art history, normally one semester hour of credit represents one 50-minute session each week of the term. For our studio classes, normally a ratio of one semester hour of credit equals two hours of contact time and one hour of outside work per week. For example, a three semester credit hour course would require six faculty contact hours per week. Note: Faculty contact must be sufficient to ensure the development of knowledge and skills required by each course. Normally, faculty contact is greater at the foundation or introductory level than at the advanced studio level.
- Music courses follow the recommendations for awarding credit as required by The National Association of Schools of Music (NASM). Normally, a semester hour of credit represents at least three hours of work each week for a period of fifteen or sixteen weeks. In lecture classes, such as music history, normally one semester hour of credit is given for one 50-minute session plus two hours of homework each week of the term. For ensembles, like laboratory classes, normally one semester hour of credit is given for two to four 50-minute rehearsal sessions per week, depending on the ensemble. For applied lessons, normally one semester hour of credit is given for each three hours of practice, plus the necessary individual 30-minute lesson per week with the instructor. For example, a two semester credit hour applied lesson would meet for two 30-minute lessons per week.
- Internships, clinical, and field experiences require a minimum of forty-five (45) clock hours for each semester credit hour.
- For online, hybrid, and other nontraditional modes of delivery, semester credit hours are assigned based on learning outcomes that are equivalent to those in a traditional course setting, forty-five (45) hours of work by a typical student for each semester hour of credit.
Syllabi for every course will contain the appropriate definition of a semester credit hour from the list above. Each course should then follow this definition.