Quick Facts About the New Credit System

Note: This information was compiled from the New Credit System FAQs and New Graduation Requirements. This is not a complete list of all policy changes, but instead covers the most significant and general changes. For more details, speak with your advisor.


– The new credit system will go into effect fall 2013.

– Your current academic record will be reviewed, and the progress you have made will be maintained.

– A course that was previously three, four or five credits under the old system will be counted as a full course/four credits under the new system. – You still need three full Winter Term projects to graduate.

– For Arts and Sciences students: To graduate, you need a total of 32 full courses, which is equivalent to 128 credits under the new system.

• Two half courses (which are two credits each) equal one full course (now four credits).

– At least 30 of the 32 courses must be academic (i.e. not Athletics, Creativity & Leadership, Learning Assistance, ExCos, etc.)

– Curriculum Exploration: Instead of the 9-9-9 rule, students will be required to take two full courses (or equivalent) in each of the three academic sections: Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Arts and Humanities and Social Sciences.

– For College students, classes in the Conservatory will be in the Arts and Humanities category.

– Curriculum Exploration courses must be completed in the College, unless you are a transfer student.

– If you have already completed the 9-9-9 requirement, then you will have satisfied the new Curriculum Exploration requirement. If you have not completed the 9-9-9, any progress you have made will be maintained.

– Cultural Diversity (CD) Requirement: You must take at least three full academic courses that are designated as CD at Oberlin.

– Quantitative and Formal Reasoning (QFR) Requirement: You must take at least two courses designated as QFR.

– One of these courses must be completed by the end of the fourth semester (or the sixth semester for double-degree students).

– Writing Requirement: Students must take two writing courses designated as either W-Int or W-Adv by the end of their second year of study. A third W-Adv class is highly recommended.

– Transfer credits: Transfer credits earned before matriculation will be limited to five courses/20 credits for the B.A. Transfer credit earned after matriculation will be limited to three courses/12 credits for the B.A. Transfer credits must be applied before the end of add/drop period next fall if you want to transfer up to 30 credits before the new system is enacted.

– Semester limit: In the College, the new limit will allow up to five full courses/20 credits (although you will need consent from the Dean for more than four full courses and one half course/18 credits). Conservatory students are allowed 24 credits and double-degree students are allowed 26 credits without special permission. (If you are a double-degree student and want to take more than 26, you must have shown the ability to successfully manage a heavy course load in the past.