Texas Tech University


[Moderate revision–posted 1/19/24 (replaces 10/3/06 edition)]
[PDF Version]

 Texas Tech University logo

Operating Policy and Procedure

OP 36.05: Shortened Format Courses

DATE: January 19, 2024

PURPOSE: The purpose of this Operating Policy/Procedure (OP) is to ensure understanding and a standardized procedure concerning shortened format courses.

REVIEW: This OP will be reviewed in April of even-numbered years by the Vice Provost for Academic Innovation and Student Success with substantive revisions presented to the Provost and Senior Vice President (PSVP) by May 15.


1.  Courses offered for credit by Texas Tech University may be taught in formats shorter than semester length, with proper safeguards of quality, if recommended by the departmental area to offer the course and approved through administrative channels, including the PSVP. In approving a course to be taught in shortened format, the guidelines below should be considered. The guidelines may be modified by the administration as necessary to maintain integrity of the courses and adherence to state and board regulations. *Policy for Courses in Shortened Formats; Board Minutes, TTU, Nov. 22, 1985.

2.  The shortened format course policy is as follows:

a.    The semester hour system is based upon one contact hour per week (50 minutes of instruction) or its equivalent for a semester of 15 instructional weeks. Instructional hours for the shortened format courses generally maintain this standard, and any deviation must be approved through regular channels. Thus, a three-credit-hour course should have approximately 45 contact hours.

b.    Any regular credit course may be taught in the summer term, utilizing the extended class periods applicable to summer.

c.    Courses to be offered in shortened format must have prior approval at departmental or area, college, and university levels.

d.    Department chairpersons and area coordinators must formally advise their respective deans of courses to be taught in shortened format each semester.

e.    It is recognized that not all courses are appropriate for shortened format. Before developing such shortened courses, the department or area proposing short courses should take into consideration such factors as amount of reading and analysis required, maturity of students, need for concentrated immersion in subject, and, in general, the nature of the learning required.

f.    Admission to short courses follows standards for all regular credit courses. Administrative issues such as the use of different drop and withdrawal dates, refunds, and grading must be established prior to the beginning of any course.

g.    Location of off-campus courses is approved through the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board procedures.

3.  Authoritative Reference

Texas Administrative Code § 4.6

Operating Policies & Procedures