Main content

Academic Credit and Student Workload

The academic year at Purchase College comprises two 15-week semesters. The unit of credit is the semester hour, which represents:

  • 50 minutes per week (12.5 hours per semester) of instruction in lectures, seminars, and discussions*
  • 100 minutes per week (25 hours per semester) of instruction in studios, labs, field trips, and practica*
  • 150 minutes per week (37.5 hours per semester) of instruction in studios, labs, field trips, and practica with little or no outside preparation expected of students
  • 37.5 hours per semester of academic work in part-time, supervised independent studies

In credit-bearing courses that meet for fewer than 15 weeks (for example, short-term courses, winter session and summer session courses, and study abroad courses), the hours per week are proportionately increased.

*For each credit, students are expected to complete a minimum of two hours of academic work (study, preparation, etc.) outside of class each week. Some courses may require three or more hours of outside work each week for each credit. In particular, the BFA and MusB programs are intensive professional training programs and require students’ full-time commitment. Students in all majors are advised to limit their job and social commitments in order to give their coursework adequate attention.

Related SUNY Policy: Credit/Contact Hour