VCSU operates an academic calendar on the semester system, according to the guidelines in SBHE policy 406.1 (Academic Calendars). Each semester is 80 days, or 16 weeks (including exam week). One semester hour of credit represents one academic hour of class instruction or two or more academic hours of laboratory work per week for a period of 15 weeks, or the equivalent.
In organizing their schedules, students should plan to spend about two hours of study for one hour of classroom instruction. Therefore, a student taking 15 credit hours should expect to spend about 30 hours studying each week. In seeking a course overload, students should consider carefully the impact of this load on their available study time.
Academic Semester Course Load
While full-time enrollment is 12 semester hours per semester, students who plan to graduate in four years should take 15-16 credit hours per semester. A student in good standing may register for up to nineteen hours. Students wishing to enroll in more than nineteen hours must meet the appropriate grade point average. The student wishing to take 20-21 semester hours must maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.00. The student wishing to take 22-23 semester hours must maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.50. No student will be allowed to enroll in more than 23 semester hours in any one semester.
Summer Terms Course Load
Summer terms compress the regular term, by meeting 3, 4, or 8 weeks instead of 15, but the expectation for academic rigor, course content, and study remain the same. Therefore, a 3 credit course offered during an 8 week session will take the same amount of time as 6 credits would in a regular academic term, and a 3 credit course offered during a 4 week session is equivalent to 12 credits (or full time) during a regular academic term.
Students and advisors should use these guidelines to plan summer work realistically, so students may gain the full benefit of the course and have sufficient time for study.
Full-time status during Summer term is 6 credits; the maximum load is 9 concurrent credits for a student in good academic standing. If a student wishes to register for more than 9 credits that are not concurrent, s/he should contact the Office of the Registrar; in any case, no more than 9 credits may be taken concurrently and no more than 14 semester hours in any Summer (total for all summer terms; this is the equivalent of one credit per week for the full summer).
Any exception to the above policy requires a petition to the Academic and Scholastic Standing Committee. Petitions are available in the Office of the Director of Student Academic Services.
Sponsored by: Vice President for Academic Affairs
Effective: Fall, 1986
Revised: Spring, 1990
Reviewed: Winter, 1996
Revised Number: February 2010
Revised: January 2012
Revised & Name Change: April 2020