2.4 Planning a College Course Load

RaeAnna Jeffers

Learning Objectives

At the end of this section, the learner will:

  • Calculate the number of hours needed for work, class, and study.
  • Identify the number of remaining hours in a schedule for other activities.
  • Begin the enrollment process.

Planning a College Course Load

Now that you are aware of your use of time, you can begin to build a college course load that makes sense for your personal goals. You will need to spend 3 hours of study and homework time per each 1 credit hour. If you do the math, a 3 credit-hour course will require 9 hours of time for completion of assignments and study time (3 credit hrs. x 3 hrs. study and homework = 9 total hrs. per 3 credit-hour course).

The table below shows a recommended time allotment for class hours and study time per hour of work at your place of employment.

Figure 2.4.1 Recommended Weekly Time Allotment Per Hours Worked

# of Work Hours

# Class hours Recommended

Estimated Maximum Study Time Needed

Total Hours Needed Per Week

Remaining Hours per Week for Other Activities





















Now would be a good time to review your one-week time audit from 2.1. Once you decide how many course hours you can handle, you are ready to enroll in classes. Enrolling as early as possible will improve your chances of getting the desired courses and schedule. Look at the course schedules to see when classes meet, any required pre-requisites for the courses, and any other key dates like holidays, drop days, etc. Make sure you have completed any advising appointments, orientations, or additional requirements prior to starting your enrollment process.

Activity 2.4: Planning a Course Load

Planning a Course Load

Complete the following activity to calculate your hours for work, class, and study time. The remaining weekly balance of time will be used to plan all other activities.

Refer back to these calculations later when completing your semester schedule in 2.5.



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2.4 Planning a College Course Load by RaeAnna Jeffers is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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