University policy defines one undergraduate credit hour as approximately 30 real hours of student work, both in class and out of class. Thus, a 4-credit course should engage students for 120 hours over the course of the term. Lower-division courses must meet one hour a week in class (lectures, sections, labs, etc.) for each credit hour. Upper-division courses may meet for one fewer hour (e.g. 3 hours a week for a 4-credit course) so long as out-of-class work makes up the difference.
One graduate credit hour denotes 40 hours of work per term. Graduate students in 4xx/5xx courses are therefore expected to perform roughly a third more work than their undergraduate counterparts. Be specific about the additional expectations for graduate students in 5xx courses; grading them more stringently is not sufficient. 5xx- level work must be more in-depth and of higher quality than 4xx-level work. Per the GTFF Collective Bargaining Agreement, graduate students in 5xx courses may not lead discussion sessions, lecture for the instructor, lead group projects, or in any way take responsibility for undergraduate students’ learning experiences unless the course is itself a pedagogy course. Law courses require 56 hours per credit per 14-week semester.
For courses to be offered in an online/hybrid format, instructors must answer an additional question explaining how their pedagogy ensures a level of faculty-student engagement equivalent to that for a conventional classroom-based course.
EXAMPLE for a 4-credit undergraduate course that meets 3 hours per week.
|Educational Format or Activity||UG Hours||Explanation/Justification|
|Lecture (Note: 50-minute session = 1 hour; 80-minute session = 1.5 hours||30||20 lectures @1.5 hours|
|Discussion Sections||10||1 hr/week|
|Assigned Readings||50||~100 pages (approx. 5 hrs) per week|
|Writing Assignments||30||3 hrs/week on homework|
For Course Approval
The Student Engagement Inventory (SEI) is checked against the syllabus to ensure that the proper amount of credit is awarded to the course given the work it requires. To ensure that the number of credits requested corresponds to the student workload described in the syllabus, instructors should tally up and briefly explain the number of hours per term a typical student is expected to spend. For each applicable category, indicate the total expected hours and provide a brief explanation. For reading and writing assignments, indicate the total number of required pages. Highlight any divergence from what a non-specialist reviewer might consider normal (e.g., a dense philosophical text read at a rate of five pages an hour).
Graduate students in 4xx/5xx courses are expected to perform not only additional work, but work that is more in-depth and of higher quality as befits a graduate-level course. Be specific about the additional expectations for graduate students in 5xx courses; grading them more stringently is not sufficient. Be aware that requiring graduate students in 5xx courses to lead discussion sessions, lecture for the instructor, lead group projects, or in any way take responsibility for undergraduate students’ learning experiences is not an acceptable differentiation (unless the course itself is a pedagogy course) and is in violation of the GTFF Collective Bargaining Agreement.
Approved By: University Senate
Revision History: From “UOCC Procedures for Curricular Changes” - Revised August 2009; updated March 6, 2015 (see page 19); updated August 2017; Minor corrections Jan 2018 for consistency; updated for US18/19-09 Feb 2019.
Original Source: UOCC Procedures for Curricular Changes - https://cpb-us-e1.wpmucdn.com/blogs.uoregon.edu/dist/c/13569/files/2019/02/Procedures-for-Curricular-Changes-Winter-2019-revised-1sc8dfx.pdf