Course Credit Hour Approval


The purpose of this Policy is to establish guidelines and responsibilities for determining the credit hours awarded for all courses and programs, regardless of academic level or mode of delivery, at Lynn University.


The awarding of credit hours occurs at Lynn University in an effort to calculate and record students’ achievement and fulfillment of requirements as they progress toward the earning of degrees and other academic qualifications at the institution. While credit hours are commonly understood to measure student work, it is important to remember that credit hours also reflect general academic learning. For all Lynn University academic programs, students must have successfully met the academic requirements with an amount of work represented in intended learning outcomes and verified by evidence of student achievement that reasonably approximate:

  • One hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and a minimum of two hours of student work completed outside of the classroom each week for approximately fifteen weeks for a traditional semester, or the equivalent amount of work over a different period of time; or
  • For other academic activities (including laboratory work and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours), an amount of work at least equivalent to that required in the above definition, as determined by the College Curriculum and Academic Standard Committee, the applicable College Dean and the Vice President for Academic Affairs.

The following examples clarify the amount of work expected at Lynn University per week (for approximately fifteen weeks for a traditional semester, or the equivalent amount of work over a different period of time) for other academic activities:

Laboratory courses (with little outside preparation required)–Three hours of instruction or supervised student work conducted in the laboratory.

Laboratory courses (with moderate outside preparation required)–Two hours of instruction or supervised student work conducted in the laboratory, and one hour of preparation work conducted by the student.

Studio work–Two hours of studio instruction or supervised student work and one hour of student work completed outside of the studio.
Internships/practical/field experiences – Three hours of documented work completed by the student.

Field trips/educational travel–Three hours of actual student time spent engaged in learning.

Workshops–At least one hour of instruction or supervised work, and two hours of work completed by the student individually.

Distance Learning courses –Three hours representing a combination of instruction, discussion, group work and individual student work.


Credit Hour- the unit by which the University measures its course work. The number of hours assigned to a course is a measure of the outcomes expected, the mode of instruction, the amount of time spent in class, and the amount of work that is expected outside of class in order to complete all course objectives.


To ensure the reliability and accuracy of credit hour assignments, credit hour assignments for returning/ongoing courses are determined prior to each academic year by the College Dean in consultation with the program coordinator. Moreover, credit hour assignments are included as part of the Program Review cycle.

New courses will be assigned an initial credit hour allotment during the Curriculum Development process. The initiator of the course proposal is responsible for setting forth reasoning for a particular credit hour assignment, and this recommendation will be approved or amended along with the other elements of the course that are reviewed during the curricular change process.

To learn more about this policy or the supporting procedures, please contact Academic Affairs.

Policy updated on: Oct. 24, 2018