Credit hours are a way of numerically representing all work completed. They are not the same as the actual ‘classroom contact’ i.e. instructional hours. Most institutions of higher education in the U.S. operate on an academic year divided into two equal semesters of 15-16 weeks’ duration, with a winter break of 2-3 weeks and a summer session of 10-12 weeks, plus additional shorter breaks. The actual amount of academic work that goes into a single semester credit hour is often calculated as follows:
Generally, in order to complete an MS or an MBA course you have to complete 33 credits, usually in a 2 year-period. The total number of credits is broken up in different ways. For example, if you opt to do a thesis, then the break up is:
- Thesis – 6 credits
- Course – 27 credits
If the course does not have the thesis option then you will have to do a project and the break up will be:
- Project – 3 credits
- Course – 30 credits
The credit system will differ from university to university, but by and large this is the system that is followed.
Students are awarded 3 credits per theory course (or subject) that they study in a semester. But in order to earn the credits for the course they have to undergo actual classroom instruction for 3 hours a week for the whole semester. You will be expected to take a minimum of 3 such theory courses per semester and thus will be awarded a total of 9 credits, 3 for each of the subjects.