Semester Conversion Student/Parent FAQ

Students and Parents

We know students and parents have questions regarding the university's conversion from quarters to semesters, and we hope to address many of those concerns here.

There are links on this site to valuable resources that will help you understand the conversion's effect on the university calendar, course scheduling, timely graduation, and much more.

Students, your most valuable resource is your academic advisor. Please read the frequently asked questions below and see your advisor to discuss these and all other issues pertaining to your individual track toward graduation.

Q: How will I know what courses taken under quarters will count toward my degree when I graduate on the semester calendar?

A: Please continue to work with your advisor during this transition. One tool that will be helpful is the the Quarter-to-Semester Course Conversion Guide, as it displays the quarter to semester equivalent courses. Please note that not all courses are available, as many are still being reviewed and approved. For those semester courses that have been approved, their quarter-equivalent course number is included from a search menu. Details concerning the sequence or if a bridge course are also available through the guide.


Q: When does the semester system begin?
A: Summer 2012. The 7-week summer term will be followed directly by the 14-week autumn semester, beginning August 22, 2012. See the academic calendar for 2012-13 and the finals schedule for autumn 2012.

Q: Will I still be able to graduate on time?
A: Yes — provided you work closely with your academic advisor, beginning now, to develop an academic plan toward timely graduation. Your academic advisor will have access to a transition plan for your major. Work with your advisor to make sure that you are making expected progress towards your degree. (See the Pledge to Students.)

Q: Will tuition cost more under the semester system?
A: No. Full-time tuition for an academic year under semesters will not cost more than what the cost of tuition for that same year would be under quarters. (See the Pledge to Students.)

Q: Will three classes per semester be considered full-time?
A: No. Under the semester system, you have more time to complete assignments for each class, so you need to take more than three classes for full-time status. If you want to graduate in four years, you should take five classes per semester. This means taking classes every day of the week, two or three per day. Work with your advisor to develop your four-year plan.

Q: How will the hours I have earned under quarters be combined with the hours I will earn under semesters?
A: The registrar's office will multiply the credit hours taken on the quarter system by 2/3 to calculate total semester credit hour equivalent.

Q: What if I'm in the middle of courses that must be taken in a series when the conversion occurs?
A: Each college and department is working individually on plans for transitioning its courses from quarters to semesters to make the move go smoothly for students. Check with your academic advisor to see if your college/department transition plan is available yet.

Q: When do classes begin and end each year under the semester system?
A: Generally, autumn semester classes begin on Wednesday of the third or fourth week in August and end the first week in December. Spring semester classes typically begin on Monday of the second week in January and end the third week in April. Dates for academic-year 2012-2013 are available on the academic calendar.

Q: What if I change my major before the semester conversion happens?
A: Nearly all decisions regarding major requirements, credit transfers, etc., will be handled at the college or department level. Consult with your academic advisor on how changing your major will affect required courses and time to graduation.