Determination of Credit Hours for Coursework
Adopted by the KU Law faculty August 23, 2016. Amended September 13, 2016.
The following constitutes KU Law's policy for how credit hours are determined based on assigned coursework.
Unless otherwise specified below, students will complete at least 42.5 hours of course work per credit hour awarded. Course work typically includes 1 hour of direct faculty instruction and 2 hours of out-of-class student work per week for 15 weeks, or the equivalent amount of work over a different amount of time. Out-of-class student work may include, but is not limited to, preparing for class and preparing for and taking an exam(s).
Writing is an iterative process, requiring constant revision and redrafting. In addition to time spent in the classroom, it is expected that students in writing courses are spending at least 2 hours per week per credit hour outside of the classroom working on their writing projects and class preparation. 42.5 hours per credit of time will be spent in class, preparing for class (reading or completing class assignments), and researching and writing the required paper(s). This includes the typical law school “seminar.” In lieu of a final exam, some writing classes may require students to complete a final written assessment. In such instances, students will spend at least 3 hours outside of the classroom working on the writing assignment during the week of final exams or an equivalent amount of time earlier in the semester.
1 hour of clinic credit requires students to complete a minimum of 42.5 hours of clinic work per semester. Clinic work includes (a) advising or representing actual clients, or serving as a third-party neutral, under the supervision of a faculty member who is licensed to practice law and (b) preparing for and attending the clinic class. Although work varies in each clinic, all clinics provide students with significant opportunities for performing substantive legal work, faculty feedback, and self-reflection.
Each hour of field-placement credit requires 42.5 hours of field-placement work during the semester or summer session in which the student is enrolled in the course. Thus, a student enrolled for 3 credit hours must work 127.5 hours over the semester or summer session. Students will be required to spend additional time on academic work as required by the course professor. Academic work may include an orientation session, reading assignments, a goals memorandum, weekly journals, and a reflective paper.
Law Journal and Law Review
It is the responsibility of the faculty advisors to ensure that both staff and board members are engaged in review or journal-related activities that require the equivalent of 42.5 hours of work per credit hour received. Advisors will communicate this requirement to staff and board members in writing at the beginning of the academic year. Advisors may verify compliance on the basis of information provided by staff or board members.
Competition Teams (Mock Trial, Moot Court, and Transactional LawMeet)
Students participating in competition teams (i.e. mock trial, moot court, and Transactional LawMeet) shall complete at least an amount of work equivalent to 42.5 hours per credit awarded. Work may include document drafting, practicing for competition (e.g. oral argument practices, etc.) with faculty, attorney volunteers, and experienced classmates, and attendance and participation in competitions.
For each simulation class, 42.5 hours per credit awarded shall be time spent in class, preparing for and performing simulation work, preparing for class, completing class assignments, and preparing for and taking an exam, if applicable. Simulation faculty shall ensure that credit granted for such classes is commensurate with the time and effort required and the anticipated quality of the educational experience of the student.
Based on ABA Interpretation 310-1, for the purposes of Standard 310, “fifty minutes suffices for one hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction. An ‘hour’ for out-of-class student work is sixty minutes. The 15-week period may include one week for a final examination.” Managing Director’s Guidance Memo (.pdf), Standard 310 9 May 2016).