Accelerated Classes

What is an accelerated class?

Accelerated classes cover the same amount of content and material in about half the time.

Because of that, accelerated classes will require at least double the dedicated work time per course than the typical 15-week semester class. See the chart below for more information.

Accelerated classes offer the same quality of teaching, support, and the same amount of content, but in half the time as 15-week classes. They provide particular flexibility for occupational students whose courses have significant seasonal changes.

See the current list of accelerated classes here.

Frequently asked questions

  • Who can take an accelerated course?

    • Accelerated courses are best suited for students having the following skills:
      • Self-motivation—the ability to stay focused without instructor prompting
      • Computer literacy—the ability to navigate online tools and resources
      • Ability to manage study time effectively and dedicate necessary time to coursework
      • Good self-advocacy skills to seek help when necessary
    • Many programs are offering accelerated coursework, but some programs discourage students from taking accelerated courses. These include the Maritime Academy’s Deck and Engineer programs.
    • Please consult with your academic advisor when choosing your courses to be sure that accelerated classes are the right fit for you.
  • Can I still take a 15-week class if I am taking an accelerated class?

    • Yes, you can take a combination of accelerated and 15-week classes, though you should consult with your advisor before doing so. The full NMC class schedule will continue to have a large proportion of classes that run for 15 weeks.
    • Note: Classes that have a prerequisite may not be taken at the same time as the prerequisite. For example, a 15-week ENG 111 class could not be taken at the same time as an accelerated ENG 112 class.
  • How many accelerated classes should I take?

    • It is recommended that a student take no more than (two) accelerated classes at the same time and no more than a total of (four) accelerated classes over the course of a 15-week semester. Please consult with your academic advisor when choosing your courses to be sure that accelerated classes are the right fit for you.

      Example Schedule A

      1st Half Semester

      2nd Half Semester

      7-week course

      7-week course

      15-week course

      Example Schedule B

      1st Half Semester

      2nd Half Semester

      7-week course

      7-week course

      7-week course

      7-week course

  • How many hours a week should I expect to spend on an accelerated class?

    • The number of hours varies by the contact hours for the class. For every class contact hour, you should expect four times the number of hours for classwork and study time. For example: 3 credit/contact hours x 4 = 12 hours per week of homework and study for one class. Here are some sample classes and the minimum expected hours to spend.

      Sample Classes

      Example Course

      Total Credit Hours

      Total Course Hours

      Course Duration in Weeks

      Estimated Time Commitment Per Week in Class

      Estimated Time Commitment Per Week Outside of Class to study / complete assignments

      Total Time Commitment Per Week

      BUS 101

      3 credit hours

      45 hours


      6 hours per week

      12 hours per week

      18 hours per week

      ENG 111

      4 credit hours

      60 hours


      8 hours per week

      16 hours hours per week

      24 hours per week

      ENV 103

      4 credit hours

      75 hours


      10 hours per week

      20 hours per week

      30 hours per week

  • How can I prepare for an accelerated class?

    • Part-time students who work a full-time job are strongly advised to take only one accelerated class at a time, because accelerated classes are of the same rigor and equate to the same instructional and required study hours as 15-week classes.
    • Be prepared to manage time wisely, not miss classes and stay current with the class requirements. Just as you would with any class, block off enough time outside of class for studying.
  • Online Classes

    • If you are considering an accelerated online class and have never taken an online course before, we recommend starting with a 15-week online class first, if possible. Learn more about online classes and see the current list here.
    • Logging in to accelerated classes should be done daily. However, federal regulations require that student attendance be established by activity MORE than just logging into the class. Attendance can be determined by participating in a discussion board, submitting an assignment, or other actions that are considered fulfilling a class requirement or contributing toward a grade as defined in the class syllabus.
  • What about attendance and accelerated classes?

    • Regular attendance is important for all classes, regardless of the class length. However, even one absence in an accelerated class can result in missing a significant amount of material.
    • Students may be subject to attendance policies that could cause them to be dropped for lack of attendance, or if they have ceased attending and made no communication with faculty regarding their absence. Attendance policies are in place to promote student success and reduce the likelihood of receiving a failing grade.
  • Will accelerated classes transfer?

    • Yes! Taking a class in an accelerated format will not impact the transferability of a class.
    • A student’s transcript will look identical whether they take a class in an accelerated or 15-week format. The name of the class and the number of credits assigned to that class will remain the same.
  • With accelerated classes, can I complete the degree in half the time?

    • No, because students will take a maximum of two accelerated classes at a time, for a total of four per semester (roughly 12–15 credits total), degree progress will be the same as for students taking a full load of 15-week courses. Despite the increased work and study time in accelerated classes, some students find that taking fewer classes at a time feels more manageable.
  • How does financial aid work with accelerated classes?

    • In accelerated scheduling, a student’s credit hours for the semester are divided between two accelerated periods. The number of credit hours a student takes in the semester as a whole will determine their enrollment level and how much financial aid is disbursed to a student’s account.
    • Students who only enroll and attend one of the accelerated periods within the full length semester would be subject to a reduced Cost of Attendance (COA) budget, which could impact the amount of financial aid a student is eligible for.
    • In order to have all credits count for Pell Grant, students should enroll for the entire semester in advance where possible. Students should also understand that Pell Grant and State aid (TIP, Michigan Reconnect, Michigan Achievement, etc.) may be adjusted for courses that are dropped and/or never attended.
    • Connect with the Financial Aid Office to learn more.