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Student TAP Coach - Semester Hour

A semester hour is defined in the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education as “a credit, point, or other unit granted for the satisfactory completion of a course which requires at least 15 hours (of 50 minutes each) of instruction and at least 30 hours of supplementary assignments.” As an example, according to this definition, a 3-credit course requires 45 hours in class and 90 hours of supplementary, outside assignments during a semester.

To be full time for financial aid purposes, you must be enrolled for at least 12 semester hours in a semester of not less than 15 weeks, including examination periods, or at least eight semester hours in a quarter.

Although not defined in regulation, a quarter credit hour equals two-thirds of a semester hour of credit. Thus, if you are attending a school that operates on a quarter calendar and awards quarter credits, you must enroll in at least 12 quarter credits in a quarter (twelve quarter credits multiplied by two-thirds equals eight semester hours, as required by the regulation).