8.1.6 - Credit Hour Definition

Last updated on May 30, 2023

POLICY: A credit hour is the amount of work represented in intended learning outcomes and verified by evidence of student achievement.


This policy applies to eligible Spoon River College students.


  1. The Spoon River College definition of a credit hour complies with federal, state, and accreditation expectation and applies to credit-bearing courses within degree and certificate programs and to all credit-bearing courses taught by full-time and part-time instructors including dual credit courses taught by high school faculty.
  2. Spoon River College uses the Carnegie Unit as the basis to define a credit hour. One semester credit equals 750 minutes per semester along with a minimum of 1500 minutes of out of class student work.
  3. Courses offered on a shortened schedule or in alternative formats, such as online, hybrid, distant learning, independent study, internships, practicums, and laboratory classes and those with clinical experiences must meet the identified course objectives and provide an equivalent amount of in-class and out-of-class time as the traditional lecture course in a 16-week format.
  4. Out-of-class student work may include, but is not limited to, activities such as readings, review of materials in preparation for assessments, group projects, research, written assignments, preparations for presentations, rehearsals, creation of studio art, and fieldtrips.