UNC Charlotte Academic Procedure: Class Scheduling Guidelines and Classroom Utilization

I. Introduction

This policy defines the scheduling and classroom utilization guidelines for courses taught on the main campus of UNC Charlotte. The goal is to ensure the effective use of instructional space and, through the effective distribution of classes throughout the day and week, ensure a lively campus culture.

II. Procedure Statement

Instructional Requirements

All classes must meet system-wide standards by scheduling over the semester 750 minutes of instruction per credit hour.

Course Distribution
  1. A minimum of 40% of Monday-Thursday classes must be scheduled during non-prime time: defined as early morning classes with a start time of 8:00 a.m. and late afternoon classes with start times at or after 3:30 p.m.
  2. All colleges must schedule a minimum of 20% of their classes such that they include a meeting time on Friday (i.e. MWF, WF, or F only).
Use of Instruction Space
  1. The use of all instructional space, defined as general instructional space (classrooms that could be used for instruction by any unit) and specialized space (such as labs and studios), must be scheduled according to the UNC Charlotte Standard class scheduling guidelines and must follow the course distribution parameters described above.
  2. Academic Departments and Programs must make efficient use of all general instructional space and are encouraged to match maximum class enrollments to the enrollment capacity of the room in which a class is scheduled.
  3. For classrooms with a capacity of 51 seats or more “efficient use” during prime time is defined by a class enrollment of at least 75% of room capacity.  Classes scheduled outside of prime time in classrooms with a capacity of 51 seats or more are encouraged to meet the 75% threshold.
  4. Academic Departments and Programs that have priority room assignment for four or more class periods per day for classrooms with a capacity of 99 seats or higher must schedule an 8:00 a.m. class in that classroom.
One Day Per Week Classes
  1. Academic Departments and Programs may schedule a class Monday–Thursday in a 1-day block (e.g., Monday 8:00 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.) only if they have identified or scheduled a second class that is scheduled in a 1-day block in the same room on the corresponding scheduling day (e.g., Wednesday 8:00 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.).
  2. Academic Departments and Programs may schedule a class in a 1-day block on Friday without offering a corresponding section; however, the Friday class must be offered according to the UNC Charlotte Standard class scheduling guidelines.
  3. A three credit hour class scheduled in a 1-day block may incorporate a 15 minute break, if desired.
MWF Classes
  1. Academic Departments and Programs should use the MWF sequence for those courses in which students benefit from participating in shorter but more frequent class sessions.
  2. Classes (3 credit hour) scheduled on a MWF basis will utilize the standard start time periods, but will only include 50 minutes of instructional time for each class meeting.
Exceptions and Evaluation
  1. Associate Deans are charged with the responsibility of monitoring course scheduling within their respective colleges.
  2. Academic Departments and Programs may not deviate from these scheduling parameters without approval of the Associate Dean of the College.
  3. Academic Departments and Programs that fail to abide by this policy as administered by the Associate Dean will lose their priority room assignment capabilities.
  4. Academic Affairs will conduct periodic reviews to ensure compliance.

III. Definitions

  • Prime time – classes that have start times of 9:30 a.m., 11:00 a.m., 12:30 p.m., and 2:00 p.m.
  • Non-prime time – early morning classes with a start time of 8:00 a.m. and afternoon classes with start times at or after 3:30 p.m.
  • College – An academic unit of the University.  Each of the seven discipline-based colleges at UNC Charlotte represents an organization of related departments. 
  • Credit hours – Credit hours, also known as semester hours, are the number of hours the course is allocated.  The majority of undergraduate courses have three (3) credit hours, while labs and other courses may have one, two, four, or more credit hours.  Attempted, passed, and earned credit hours are reported on transcripts.
  • Semester or Term – A period of study of approximately 16 weeks, usually half of the academic year (i.e., fall and spring semesters).  The Fall semester begins in August and the Spring semester begins in January at UNC Charlotte. There are summer terms as well: one ten-week and two five-week terms.

IV. Procedure Contact(s)

V. History

  • Approved: January 1993
  • Revised: November 17, 2005
  • Revised: June 4, 2012

VI. Related Policies, Procedures, and Resources

VII. Frequently Asked Questions

There are no Frequently Asked Questions for this procedure.