Academic Programs Catalog

General Information, Policies, Procedures and Regulations

General Procedures and Regulations


Courses at Michigan State University are given on a  "semester" basis, and credits earned are semester credits. To convert semester credits to the “term” or “quarter” basis employed in certain other institutions, multiply by 3/2. To convert term credits to semester credits, multiply by 2/3.

Each course usually carries a specific number of credits based upon the number of instructional contact hours and study hours required each week per semester. The earning of a credit requires, as a minimum, one instructor-student contact hour per week per semester plus two hours of study per contact hour; OR two hours of laboratory contact hours per week per semester, plus one additional hour spent in report writing and study; OR other combinations of contact and study hours which constitute an equivalent of these experiences. In all courses taught in the time frame of the regular semester, regardless of format, provision will be made for contact hours and/or study hours which reflect optimal use of the class and study time provided for in the official university calendar. In courses in other time frames, provision will be made for contact hours and study time in a combination, which is equivalent to the semester experience.

The number of credits normally carried in a semester is defined in the Undergraduate Education and Graduate Education sections of this catalog.

Persons who are assessed fees for 7 or more credits (6 or more credits for doctoral students) in a semester:

  1. Are subject to the housing regulations as stated in University Housing Policy.
  2. May utilize the facilities of the Olin Health Center. Information on services available and the charges made may be obtained at the Olin Health Center.
  3. May purchase football, basketball, and/or hockey season tickets for themselves and their spouses at 50 percent of the public rate.
  4. Are eligible for free admission to other regularly scheduled athletic events.
  5. Are eligible for student discounts on series tickets to professional performing arts events at the Wharton Center for Performing Arts.
  6. Are eligible to purchase one guest ticket to professional performing arts events at the Wharton Center for Performing Arts and Institute for Arts and Culture. One validated student ID card must be presented with every two student-rate tickets when attending a performance.