Contract Credit

The School of Extended and International Education Offers University Credit

Program Coordinator

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If your organization offers professional development courses, programs, or conferences, consider offering extra value to your students with transcripted credit through the Contract Credit Program.

It's Easy!

Simply submit a proposal outlining your activities and the basis of award of credit, following the credit guidelines listed below, along with instructor qualifications. Upon approval, you can offer continuing education units and/or academic credit, which students may use for their career or academic goals.

Credit Guidelines

Courses may be offered for continuing education hours (CEU), academic credit, or a choice of either. Credit is awarded for instructional activity only; breaks, meals, conference registration, or other non-instructional time is not included. Both types of credit are recorded by the University and transcripts may be requested.

Keep these criteria in mind as you design your course:

Continuing Education Units (CEU)

A CEU is a measurement of professional growth and development often applied in situations where the instructional activity provides professional training and continuing education activity which does not meet the deeper academic focus required for academic credit courses, or when a certain number of hours of continuing education are required to fulfill re-licensure requirements for professionals such as nurses, counselors, psychologists and attorneys.

  • According to ANSI/IACET standards, for each hour of class time, .1 (1/10th) CEU is granted. By this calculation, a 10-hour session would grant 1 CEU and a 3-hour workshop would yield .3 CEUs.
  • A decimal fractional part of a CEU may be awarded when appropriate. For example, a workshop that meets for 11 hours is eligible to provide 1.1 CEU.
  • Participants must attend the full number of instructional hours in order to be granted credit.
  • Out-of-class work is not generally required.
  • CEU credit does not count as academic credit and cannot count toward a degree.

Academic Credit

* Note: Contract course requests for academic credit require additional review and are approved/denied solely at the discretion of the appropriate SSU academic department.*

An academic credit unit is a measurement based on the number of instructional contact hours along with additional student work through assignments and projects outside of scheduled class times. An academic credit course proposal must demonstrate in a course syllabus the number of hours taught, topics covered, the nature of sufficient assignments and assessments based on clear student outcomes that demonstrate academic rigor.

Basic Guidelines:

  • Academic credit may be offered in 1-unit increments up to 4 units for one course.
  • Lecture classes: each academic semester unit requires 15 hours of class time and 30 hours of supporting work outside of class.
  • Activity or laboratory classes, such as art or science: 30 instructional hours and 15 out-of-class hours.
  • These hours include instructional activity only.
  • Students must complete assignments demonstrating they understand the theoretical base(s) of course content, and must be assessed on their learning.

Academic credit courses will be counted as general electives if applied toward a bachelor’s degree or other academic program, unless specifically approved to meet specific certification or credential requirements by the appropriate SSU academic department. Such a request must be explained and justified in full in the contract course request.

  • Up to 24 units of Extended Education academic credit (including Contract Course units) may be applied toward a baccalaureate degree as elective credit. Students wishing to receive specific credit for major, minor, or certificate requirements should speak with an advisor to determine whether contract credit courses would be accepted.
  • Up to 9 units of Extended academic credit (including Contract Course units) may be applied toward a master's degree, upon approval of the program's advisor. Due to the high-level focus of most graduate programs, Contract Credit units are rarely accepted towards a graduate degree.


All courses are graded Cr/NC.