CIHS Building

CREDIT HOUR POLICY

Approval as Institute of Higher Education: Status to Offer Degrees & Credit Units

California Institute for Human Science (CIHS) credit hour policy reflects the policy set out by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC) and the policy of the Bureau of Private Postsecondary Education (BPPE) of California.

 

CIHS Credit Hour Policy:

 

CIHS unit of credit hour policy is as follows:

 

  • A credit hour is an 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 ten weeks for one quarter hour of credit, 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, practica, studio work, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours.

 

  • All CIHS courses must exhibit academic rigor and evidence of appropriate student achievement for the number of units awarded. Such rigor and evidence are assessed by:

 

  1. Performance on course assignments – papers, tests, exams, quizzes, group-based activities and products, or other means;

  2. Evidence of active student participation and preparation;

  3. Student end-of-course evaluations;

  4. Faculty self-assessments of the course, their teaching, student achievement, and the extent to which Course Learning outcomes have been met;

  5. Class visits by the Dean of Academic Affairs and follow-up meetings with the instructors;

  6. Program Directors assessment of the extent to which Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs), to which the CLOs are linked, are being met.

For Reference: WSCUC Credit Hour Policy:

WASC Handbook of Accreditation (2013):

 

Credit, unit of; credit hour – a commonly accepted quantification of student academic learning. One semester unit represents the time a student is expected to devote to learning in one week of full-time undergraduate study (typically two to three hours of preparation for each hour of class, or the equivalent, for a full-time course load of 14 to 16 units per semester. At the graduate level, typically, more than three hours of study for every hour in class is expected. Institutions using other academic calendars generally calculate units of credit relative to semester units. For example, one (15-week) semester unit may be equated to 1.5 (10-week) quarter units.

 

“Credit Hour Policy” – a WASC Document (November 2011):

 

All candidate and accredited institutions are required to comply with the definition of the credit hour.

 

Definition of a Credit Hour: “Except as provided in 34 CFR 668.8(k) and (l), a credit hour is an 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 or trimester hour of credit, or ten to twelve weeks for one-quarter hour of credit, 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, practica, studio work, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours.”

 

For Reference: Bureau of Private Post-Secondary Education (BPPE):

 

BPPE defines a quarter unit of academic credit as follows:

 

At least ten (10) hours of college or university level instruction during a quarter plus a reasonable period of time outside of instruction which an institution requires a student to devote to preparation for planned learning experiences, such as preparation for instruction, the study of course material, or completion of educational projects….” (Article 1, Section 71000, P. 5, California Code of Regulations)

 

The BPPE policy is consistent with the WASC policy and with the Carnegie policy, known as the Carnegie Unit, which is commonly referenced in higher education and can be found here:

 

https://www.lasc.edu/students/Credit%20Hour%20Definition%20for%20LASC.pdf)