How many courses or credits are required for a full-time equivalent year of study?

Tags: #<Tag:0x00007f9b5bb9c5f0> #<Tag:0x00007f9b5bb9c528>

One full time equivalent (FTE) year of study equates to 120 OERu credits (or 30 North American credits) see explanation and corresponding conversion tables below.

(See also: How many micro-courses are needed for full-course credit?)

Typical course size in different regions of the world

As an international network, the OERu must ensure transnational credit transfer. However, the course sizes that make up a year of study differ across international jurisdictions. The international standard for one year of full-time study is approximately 1200 notional learning hours. The difference in course sizes typically found in different regions is illustrated in the table below:

Region / Country Number of courses
for 1 FTE year of study
Learning hours
per course
Total learning hours
North America 10 120 1200
Australia 8 160 1280
United Kingdom 6 200 1200
New Zealand 8 150 1200

Size of OERu micro-courses

To achieve a standard transfer “currency” the OERu has adopted a modular micro-course format. Each micro-course equates to 40 notional hours of learning effort. Therefore, in North America 3 micro-courses are typically required to make up a standard 3-credit course, whereas in Australia, 4 micro-courses must be completed to qualify for transcript credit for the relevant course. In the United Kingdom, 5 micro-courses are the equivalent of 20 UK credits.

OERu credit conversion model compared to North American Credits

In the OERu credit transfer model:

  • 1 OERu credit = 10 notional learning hours.
  • 1 North American credit = 40 notional learning hours.




Learning hours

OERu credits

No. of OERu


3 credit North American course 120 12 3 micro-courses
16 credit New Zealand course 160 16 4 micro-courses
20 credit United Kingdom course 200 20 5 micro-course