The Credits System

Every course has a credit value that indicates its contribution to the qualification enrolled for (or to any other qualification to which that course can contribute). These values have been derived on the basis of an equivalent full-time year for a degree being 120 credits.

The credit value also gives an indication of the total amount of time that a student might reasonably expect to have to spend on each course in order to satisfactorily complete the assessment requirements (including lecturer and tutor contact hours, workshops and tutorials, tests and assignments, supervised practical placements, study time). Converted into a number of hours per week, this is referred to as the effective weekly hours for the course.

The total hours required for the course can be calculated at 15 weeks (the number per semester) with a total commitment of 10 effective hours per week, or 150 effective hours per semester for a 15 credit course. The effective weekly hours for a course will depend on the number of weeks over which it is intended to spread the study programme during the year. The Course Guide provided for each course should indicate the effective weekly hours and how these might typically be spent.

All undergraduate and taught postgraduate courses (with the exception of a small number of courses) have a 15-credit value or multiples thereof. Between 1999-2006 all undergraduate courses (apart from a small number of qualification-specific courses in the Colleges of Design, Fine Arts and Music, Education and Sciences) had a 12.5-point value. Courses passed in previous years will carry the points earned in those years, except in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, where the courses passed in 1994 and prior years will all count at 15 points.

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