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Intersession Term Pilot Program

General Information:

The University of Toledo is offering a pilot intersession term in 2017-2018 to collect data for meaningful discussion and faculty consultation to guide future decisions concerning intersession terms. The pilot program will be limited to a maximum of 15 courses. The Provost's Office is currently seeking proposals from interested faculty to support the conversion of existing undergraduate and graduate courses that will allow them to be taught in a condensed format during the intersession term. These courses may be delivered as face-to-face lectures or hybrids (face-to face and online) or other classroom formats (laboratories, journal clubs, performances, etc.), as field experiences or as international opportunities. All courses submitted for this pilot program must already hold the appropriate curricular approval.

The intersession term is considered part of the spring 2018 term and courses may begin as early as Monday, December 18, 2017 or as late as Monday, January 2, 2018, and extend through Saturday, January 13, 2018. Thus, courses may be offered that are up to 18 days in length excluding University holidays and with no on-campus class meetings during the 2017-2018 holiday shut down, December 25, 2017 through January 1, 2018. The first day of spring semester is January 16th.

While students will be billed separately for hours taken in the intersession term, the hours taken during intersession term are added to those in the spring term for financial aid purposes.

A conversation about future intersession terms with Faculty Senate and the Graduate Council will begin during fall 2017, and will continue into spring, 2018, when assessment data from the pilot program becomes available. Future offerings and their implementation mechanisms will be discussed with faculty and decisions will be made based on the assessments and data collected from the pilot program.

Faculty compensation:

Faculty teaching during the intersession term will receive the regular overload compensation set by each college and approved by the Provost for the credit hours taught during this separate part of spring term. Thus, teaching an intersession course does not impact their annual workload.

Minimum Enrollment

Minimum enrollment for intersession term courses will be based on instructional costs – enrollment must cover the cost of instruction.

Credit Hour Guidelines

The condensed format poses challenges for the contact time required by Federal Compliance Guidelines for the award of credit hours. The definition of credit hour will apply to all intersession offerings. 

  • One semester credit hour course requires a minimum of 750 minutes of formalized, instructor-facilitated instruction in addition to a minimum 1,500 minutes of out-of-class student work.

As an example, a course offered over a nine-day period, January 2 through January 13, would require 1.5 hours of faculty led instruction each day plus an additional 3.0 hours of independent student work. As another example, a hybrid course beginning on December 18 could consist of interactions via discussion boards or instructor-prepared videos for 9 days (45 min per day), followed by face-to-face instruction (45 min per day) for an additional 9 days. Expectations for students' outside of class work would be an additional 1.5 hours for each day.

  • Using the same starting date examples as above, a three-semester credit hour course that runs from January 2 through January 13, will require 4.25 hours of instructor contact each day for 9 days (2,250 minutes total), in addition to students' out-of-class required preparation/assignments of 8.5 hours each day.

A hybrid format beginning on December 18 might consist of similar interactions using instructor-prepared videos or discussion boards (60 minutes per day) for 9 days followed by face-to-face instructor contact of 3.25 hours per day for an additional 9 days. Expectations for out-of-class student work would require an additional 4,500 minutes over the course of the term.

The 750 minutes/credit hour minimum is for lecture format classes. Credit hours for classes that are not taught as lectures - for example, laboratory work, internships, global opportunities, practica or studio work - are calculated differently and this information is available at the link below. In addition, direct faculty instruction may take place in a variety of ways (e.g., recorded lectures, face-to-face classes, videoconferencing, and interactive discussion boards) and out-of-class student work can include a variety of activities such as class preparation, reading and assignments.

Information regarding the award of credit hours for various instructional experiences can be found on the State of Ohio's Department of Education website, Directive 2010-016.

Course Proposals for the Intersession Term Pilot Program

Click here to access intersession proposal form

Completed proposals are due in the Provost’s Office by September 1, 2017. 

All proposals will be reviewed and faculty will be notified by mid-September of the approval decision. The approved courses will be posted for students to view in October at the same time the full spring 2018 schedule is made available.

Proposals will include the following:

• A description of the course.

• An attached copy of the current course syllabus for a 15- or 16-week term or for a shorter 6-week summer term that includes:  

    • student learning outcomes, written in terms of observable student behavior;
    • a calendar of class meetings;
    • information regarding students' assignments and requirements for each week of the current course; and
    • how the final grade is determined. 

• Proposed beginning and ending dates for the intersession term course and tentative class meeting schedule.

• A detailed and thoughtful discussion of how the instruction and student requirements currently included in the course will be adjusted, revised or reformatted to fit into the abbreviated intersession term and still maintain the integrity and rigor of the existing course.

As part of the review process, IR will provide enrollment and completion data for the course being proposed. Data for sections of the course previously taught in all three semesters for the past two years will be considered. The final syllabus for the intersession course does not need to be submitted as part of the proposal but a copy will be requested at the time the course is taught in December/January.

 University Teaching Center Intersession Course Conversion Awards

In addition to providing opportunities for enrichment, intersession term courses are meant to allow students to earn additional credit toward degrees and to improve time to graduation. Consequently, the Provost’s Office may provide up to 10 awards of $1,000 to support the conversion and teaching of courses that are required as part of an established program of study and count toward a degree. These may be general education courses, courses required for a major or elective courses that contribute to degree completion.

Faculty selected for these awards will receive $1,000 in extra compensation, paid in two installments. The first installment of $500 is paid at the time the award is made and the second installment is paid at the conclusion of the intersession term, after the course has been taught and an evaluation has been submitted to the University Teaching Center. This evaluation is in addition to the data being collected by Faculty Senate and Graduate Council that will inform conversations about future intersession terms. The evaluations associated with the University Teaching Center awards will contain both quantitative data regarding students’ learning and qualitative data regarding students and faculty perceptions of the abbreviated term.

Faculty who wish to have their Course Proposals for The Intersession Term Pilot Program considered for this additional monetary award should note this on the application form where requested.

Contact: Dr. Constance Shriner (, Vice Provost for Assessment, Accreditation, Program Review and Faculty Development, for any questions regarding the intersession course conversion awards.

Last Updated: 9/14/17