Credits for Curriculum Programs

A curriculum program is an organized sequence of courses leading to an associate degree, a diploma, or a certificate. Curriculum programs are designed to provide education, training, or retraining for the work force, transfer to four-year colleges and universities, or to confer general liberal arts degrees.

Credits for courses are awarded based on a semester hour credit. Credit hours for courses are determined and awarded using the following procedures as established by the State Board of Community Colleges Code (SBCCC).


Credit Hours

  • Class: Credit of one semester hour is awarded for each 16 hours of lecture and other instruction provided in a class under the supervision of an instructor.
  • Clinical Practice: Credit of one semester hour is awarded for each 48 hours of clinical practice. Clinical practice provides an opportunity for health science students to apply knowledge and skills in their delivery of care in a health care setting. A qualified faculty member, clinical instructor, or preceptor, as defined by the program related approving or accrediting body, shall supervise clinical practice to provide the student with learning experiences related to the program and to monitor and assess the student’s application of skills. Clinical practice may utilize experiences that simulate realistic clinical experiences to meet the curriculum and course objectives. The percentage of simulation experiences substituting for traditional clinical practice and the qualifications of faculty providing the simulation experience must comply with the guidelines of the applicable health science accrediting and approving bodies.
  • Experiential Laboratory: Credit of one semester hour is awarded for each 32 hours of "experiential laboratory work." Experiential laboratory work means instruction given to a student by an instructor to increase the student's knowledge and skills without immediate student application.
  • Faculty Directed Laboratory: Credit of one semester hour is awarded for each 48 hours of "faculty directed laboratory." Faculty directed laboratory means instructional activities are demonstrated or conducted by an instructor with immediate student application.
  • Work-Based Learning: Credit of one semester hour is awarded for each 160 hours of work-based learning (WBL curriculum prefix courses). Work-based learning is the development of job skills by providing the student with employment that is directly related to the educational program, and coordinated by a college representative.


Maximum Credit Hour Load

In the interest of student success, the maximum number of credit hours for which a student may register in one semester without the approval of the program head is set at 21.

  • Any student may enroll for up to 21 credit hours of classes for which he or she is eligible and in which there are seats available.
  • A student’s request to take more than 21 hours in one semester must be approved by the student’s advisor, the program head of the program in which the student is enrolled, the division chair, the dean of curriculum programs, and vice president for instructional services.
  • The 21 hours includes developmental, audited, and credit courses.