Determination of Credit Hours Worked

Policy ensuring WVU College of Law compliance with ABA Standard 310:

ABA Standard 310(b)(1) defines a “credit hour” as an amount of work that reasonably approximates: “(1) not less than one hour of classroom time 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.” Interpretation 310-1 states that “[f]or the purposes of this Standard, fifty minutes suffices for one hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction. An ‘hour’ for out-of-class student work is sixty minutes. The fifteen-week period may include one week for a final examination.”

The following policies and procedures are in place to ensure that the West Virginia University College of Law meets the requirements of Standard 310:

  • (1) for classroom and simulation (including clinic and externship) courses, classes must meet at least fifty minutes per week over fourteen weeks per credit, including, in many cases, an examination of three to four hours.
    •  (a) Faculty in doctrinal courses are required to evaluate their syllabi to ensure that assigned reading and writing exercises required in preparation for class are a reasonable approximation of the out-of- class student work standard of two hours per week per credit hour. The College of Law Registar and the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs will set a schedule that ensures enough class days and minutes to meet such requirements and collect course syllabi (consistent with existing policies).
    •  (b) For out-of-class clinical work, students must work for at least three hours (based on a sixty-minute hour) each week over fourteen weeks per credit hour. Supervising faculty will ensure this amount of work is completed and are certifying successful completion of this work when submitting grades.
    •  (c) For externship placements, students must work three and a half hours (based on a sixty-minute hour) in the placement each week over fourteen weeks per credit. Supervising faculty will ensure this amount of work is completed and are certifying successful completion of this work when submitting grades.
  • (2) for co-curricular activities, students must work for at least three hours (based on a sixty-minute hour) each week over fourteen weeks per credit. The advisor of a co-curricular activity will certify the awarding of the credit by confirming that a student has met all minimal work-related expectations associated with the competition or journal needs (e.g., engaging in research, editing scholarship, writing a brief, preparing exhibits, prepping witnesses, participating in practice rounds, participating in the competition, etc.). Faculty advisors are aware they are certifying successful completion of this work when they approve credit.

Adopted February 2017

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