A credit is the basic unit of measurement of educational accomplishment. One credit normally connotes 10 hours of lecture-recitation or 20 or more hours of laboratory, studio, or activity work. The majority of courses at Portland State University involve three or four hours per week of lecture-recitation. PSU is on the quarter-system calendar. Semester credits transferred from other accredited United States schools may be converted to PSU’s credits by multiplying by 1.5.
The 1.5 multiplication rules apply only to semester credits transferred from U.S. schools. Semester credits transferred from accredited schools outside the United States will be converted according to established international transfer credit guidelines and policies.
Academic Credit Overload
Undergraduate Academic Credit Overload
Undergraduate students who enroll in more than 21 credits per term are considered to be in academic overload. PSU audit credits and transfer credit taken at other institutions while concurrently enrolled at PSU are counted in determining overload status. Transfer credits that result in an overload for a given term will not be accepted in transfer unless prior approval has been granted.
Academic overload must be approved on a term-by-term basis as follows:
- 22-25 credits: Students must obtain prior approval from their academic program adviser using the Overload Approval Form, to be submitted to the Office of the Registrar in advance of the overload term.
- 26 or more credits: Students must obtain prior permission from the Academic Requirements Committee (ARC) by submitting an ARC petition in advance of the overload term. Students must provide justification for the overload and obtain written support from their academic program adviser. Petitions must be submitted using the Academic Requirements Committee petition prior to the first day of the overload term.
Graduate Academic Credit Overload
Graduate students who enroll in more than 16 credits per term are considered to be in academic overload. (Some programs have lower limits.)
Academic overload must be approved in advance as follows:
- 17-19 credits: Students must obtain approval from the department head of their academic program using the Overload Approval Form.
- 20 or more credits: Students must obtain approval from the chair of the graduate committee of their academic program and the Dean of the Graduate School using the Overload Approval Form.
Class standing is based on the number of credits a student has completed, according to the following schedule:
||90 or more
||135 or more
||Hold an undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university