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3.4.8 Noncredit to credit

The institution awards academic credit for course work taken on a noncredit basis only when
there is documentation that the noncredit course work is equivalent to a designated credit experience. (Noncredit to credit)

Judgment of Compliance

Sam Houston State University does not grant academic credit for noncredit coursework taken elsewhere. However, Sam Houston does grant academic credit for knowledge gained from certain work experiences that are equivalent to the knowledge that a student would gain in an academic class.

Guidelines for awarding academic credit at Sam Houston State University for work experience are covered by Academic Policy Statement 860904 “Academic Credit for Work” [1]. Through Spring 2008, Sam Houston State University offered academic credit for work experience for some degree programs in Industrial Technology. These programs are housed in the Department of Agricultural and Industrial Sciences. Until Spring 2008, the Bachelor of Science with a Major in Industrial Technology - Certification in Trade and Industry allowed up to 30 semester hours of academic credit for work experience. This program has been discontinued, but the procedural guidelines for awarding academic credit for experience are described below since the practice did take place during the evaluation period.

In addition to this program, the Industrial Technology awards up to six hours of internship credit for qualified students for work experience. This work experience credit can only be used to substitute required internship hours. In the sections below, more information is provided on the one program that formerly granted significant academic credit for work experience and the programs that currently allow academic credit for experience in lieu of internship experience, as well as the procedural guidelines that are used to formally award academic credit for work experience.

Program Leading to Certification in Trades and Industry
According to the 2006-2008 Undergraduate Catalog [2], the curriculum leading to the BS in Industrial Technology – Certification in Trades and Industry allows the department to award a maximum of 30 semester hours of academic credit for documented work experience. The program was designed to offer vocational trades and industry certification courses. These courses were also taken by non degree-seeking students for professional development credits. The determination of appropriate amount of academic credit for work experience was determined through a formal evaluation process requiring the participation of employers and Sam Houston State University faculty. The student’s employer was required to complete an evaluation of the work experience to insure that the experience was consistent with the learning objectives of the technical courses for which academic credit was to be awarded. The academic credit for work experience was only applied to technical courses within the major and was not used to complete core academic requirements or any degree-specific requirements.

This program was discontinued effective June 2008. However, 12 students currently enrolled in this program will continue to receive academic credit for any approved work experience completed prior to June 2008.

Internship Courses
The mission of the Technology Program is to provide an educational program designed to assist students in acquiring the knowledge, skills, and experiences to prepare for technological careers in industrial settings. The internship program is a critical component of the curriculum that provides a bridge between the students’ classroom experiences and the industrial environments where they intend to seek employment. The internship program in Industrial Technology is intended to provide experience-based learning opportunities for students in their respective discipline of study.

Students generally seek internship experience at the end of their sophomore or junior year. Industrial Technology (IT) 490 - Directed Studies is the internship class [2]. All internships must receive departmental approval through application prior to the initiation of the internship. Maximum credit for internship is six (6) semester credit hours.

In some instances, students with significant work experience may request to receive academic credit for IT 490 for their work experiences. Consistent with Academic Policy Statement 860904 “Academic Credit for Work”, credit may be granted after an evaluation of the employer’s description and documentation of the work experience by members of the Industrial Technology faculty. Careful consideration is given as to the nature of the work experience, whether the work experience was directly related to the sub-discipline of study, and whether or not the experience was extensive enough to allow the student to synthesize classroom experiences with the past work experiences in a meaningful manner. In essence, the faculty committee, in consultation with the student’s employer, determine whether or not the work experience meets the learning objectives of the internship course (IT 490).

Procedural Guidelines for Awarding Academic Credit for Work Experience
Academic Policy Statement 860904 [1] requires that the request for work experience credit originate in the department/program that houses the degree program. Furthermore, the request requires approval by the appropriate department chair, dean, and academic policy council. To facilitate these requests, the Industrial Technology program established a formal policy for awarding undergraduate academic credit for work experience [3]. The policy addresses work experience credit, in-service training experience, and military service/training credit course credit. In all cases, the policy states that:

• The person seeking credit must be a regularly enrolled student in order to have work experiences evaluated for possible credit;
• A formal evaluation will be made to determine if a student’s knowledge and competencies warrant the granting of University credit;
• Such credit will be indicated on the official transcript with a grade of “CR”;
• Applicability of these non-traditional credits toward a degree will be determined by the student’s academic dean;
• Not more than one half of the semester credit hours required for the degree may be fulfilled through an accumulation of work experience credit, testing credit (such as CLEP), or correspondence courses.

The evaluative process is initiated by a student request for credit. If the student is seeking credit for work experience, the student must complete Form NTEC 101N Application for Non-traditional Education Credit (Non-military) and the employer is required to complete Form NTEC 102WV Non-traditional Education Credit Program – Verification of Work Experience [4] [5]. This form, completed by the student’s employer, is sent directly to the Industrial Technology program at Sam Houston State University. If the student is seeking credit for Military service/training, the student completes Form NTEC 101M Application for Non-traditional Education Credit through Work Experience (Military) DD-214 [6]. The student must also provide their complete military record.

The application and supporting materials are reviewed by a committee consisting of faculty in the Industrial Technology program. If credit is to be awarded, the committee’s recommendation is forwarded to the dean and then to the Registrar’s office for approval.

In the evaluation process, the committee considers whether the experience is equal in duration to the course for which credit is sought and comparable in terms of acquired knowledge and competencies. For military service/training, credit is awarded in accordance with the American Council on Educations Guide (ACE guide) [7].

Supporting Documentation
Documentation Reference
Document Title
[1] Academic Policy Statement 860904 - Academic Credit for Work
[2] Industrial Technology, BS, Work Experience
[3] Non-Traditional Educations, Undergraduate Credit for
[4] Non-traditional Education Credit (Non-military), Application - Form NTEC 101N
[5] Non-traditional Education Credit Program – Verification of Work Experience - Form NTEC 102WV
[6] Non-traditional Education Credit through Work Experience (Military), DD-214, Application - Form NTEC 101M
[7] American Council on Educations - Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services - Online (ACE guide)


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Sam Houston State University
Huntsville, TX 77341
(936) 294-1111