Credit Hour Policy (2021-2022)

HOWARD UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF LAW CREDIT HOUR POLICY AY 2021-2022[1]

Howard University School of Law (HUSL) adheres to the federal and ABA definitions of a credit hour. ABA Standard 310 states, “(a) A law school shall adopt, publish, and adhere to written policies and procedures for determining the credit hours that it awards for coursework. (b) A ‘credit hour’ is an amount of work that reasonably approximates: (1) not less than one hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and two hours of out-of-class student work per week for fifteen weeks, or the equivalent amount of work over a different amount of time; or (2) at least an equivalent amount of work as required in subparagraph (1) of this definition for other academic activities as established by the institution, including simulation, field placement, clinical, co-curricular, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours.”  While Interpretation 310-1 notes that “[f]or purposes of this Standard, fifty minutes suffices for one hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction…[a]n ‘hour’ for out-of-class student work is sixty minutes. In addition, the fifteen-week period may include one week for a final examination. Finally, Interpretation 310-2 permits a school to “award credit hours for coursework that extends over any period of time, if the coursework entails no less than the minimum total amounts of classroom or direct faculty instruction and of out-of-class student work specified in Standard 310(b). 

The HUSL academic year is comprised of three semesters.

AY 2021-22: The Fall semester is 14 ½ weeks (not including final exams weeks). The Spring semester is 14 ½ weeks (not including the week of spring break or the final exam weeks). The Summer semester is 8 weeks.

The School of Law defines an in-class hour as requiring a minimum of 50 minutes. Note that, depending on the days of the class meeting(s), the number of class meetings may be different than that reflected below. For this reason, the number of class days and minutes below may be different than the ABA minimum. Professors are encouraged to plan accordingly, considering pedagogical and learning goals for the course. For reference:

4-credit class should meet for at least 2,800 minutes (with an exam) and up to 3,000 minutes (without exam or equivalent out-of-class work as detailed above).

3-credit class should meet for at least 2,100 minutes (with an exam) and up to 2,250 minutes (without exam or equivalent out-of-class work as detailed above).

2-credit class should meet for at least 1,400 minutes (with an exam) and up to 1,500 minutes (without exam or equivalent out-of-class work as detailed above).

1-credit class should meet for at least 750 minutes.

Fall 2021

  • August 16 – November 24, 2021 (14 ½ weeks, not counting exam weeks)
    1. 4 credit hours at 3 times per week – 42 class days at 75 minutes per class [classes with exams]
    2. 3 credit hours at 3 times per week – 42 class days at 50 minutes per class [classes with exams]
    3. 3 credit hours at 2 times per week – 30 class days at 75 minutes per class [classes with exams]
    4. 3 credit hours at 2 times per week – 28 class days at 80 minutes per class [classes without exams]
    5. 3 credit hours at 1 time per week – 15 class days at 140 minutes per class [classes with exams]
    6. 3 credit hours at 1 time per week – 14 class days at 150 minutes per class [classes without exams]
    7. 2 credit hours at 1 time per week – 15 class days at 95 minutes per class [classes with exams]
    8. 2 credit hours at 1 time per week – 14 class days at 100 minutes per class [classes without exams]
    9. 1 credit hours at 1 time per week—15 class days at 50 minutes per class [classes without exams]

Spring 2022

  • January 3– April 20, 2022 (14 ½ weeks not including spring break or exam weeks)
    1. 4 credit hours at 3 times per week – 42 class days at 75 minutes per class [classes with exams]
    2. 4 credit hours at 2 times per week-- 29 class days at 100 minutes per class [classes with exams]
    3. 3 credit hours at 3 times per week – 42 class days at 50 minutes per class [classes with exams]
    4. 3 credit hours at 2 times per week – 30 class days at 75 minutes per class [classes with exams]
    5. 3 credit hours at 2 times per week – 28 class days at 80 minutes per class [classes without exams]
    6. 3 credit hours at 1 time per week – 15 class days at 140 minutes per class [classes with exams]
    7. 3 credit hours at 1 time per week – 14 class days at 150 minutes per class [classes without exams]
    8. 2 credit hours at 1 time per week – 15 class days at 95 minutes per class [classes with exams]
    9. 2 credit hours at 1 time per week – 14 class days at 100 minutes per class [classes without exams]
    10. 1 credit hours at 1 time per week—15 class days at 50 minutes per class [classes without exams]

 

Summer 2022

  • May 16- July 9, 2022 (TBD)
  • May 17, 2021- July 16, 2021
  • 4 credit hours at 2 times per week (M/W or T/Th) – 15 class days at 200 minutes per class
  • 4 credit hours at 1 time per week – 9 classes at 120 minutes per class (externships only)[2]
  • 2 credit hours at 1 time per week – 9 class days at 240 minutes per class
  • 2 credit hours at 1 time per week- 6 class days at 250 minutes per class
 

[1] Last updated March 3, 2022.

[2] Students should allocate an additional hour of outside class work for class purposes.