Why change to semesters from quarters, and why now?
The state of Ohio has put forth an initiative as part of the University System of Ohio (USO), requiring that all public institutions change from quarters to semesters. This change will enable better transfer of credits, a common calendar with other public institutions in Ohio, and an earlier end to the academic year.
What is the benefit of this conversion, to me?
Conversion will ease the transfer of students between COTC programs and other state or national institutions, most of which already follow the semester system. This is especially true for minority students; for example, 94 percent of historically black colleges and universities follow the semester system.
Since most state institutions already follow the semester system, and all of Ohio’s four-year, public universities will soon be on semesters, the switch makes sense. Adherence to a common academic calendar based on semesters will improve program articulation as well as enable cross-institution courses and materials along with comprehensive student interfaces.
A semester calendar will help COTC to provide classes to students who return home for the summer months from other colleges/universities. These students often want to enroll in courses compatible with their academic goals, and within a shorter timeframe.
Conversion will provide graduating students a “first-mover” advantage when entering the job market. Most large employers schedule recruitment of new hires according to the semester calendar.
Flexibility for students
Our semester calendar will allow students greater flexibility in regard to switching, dropping, or adding classes because of the extended length of semesters vs. quarters.
When is the actual conversion to semesters going to happen?
August 22, 2012 (first day of classes on our semester academic calendar).
What are the main differences between the quarters and semesters systems?
The quarter system divides the academic year into 10-week periods. The semester system divides the year into fall and spring semesters, each with 14 weeks of instruction and a final examination week. Starting in May 2013 COTC will run a full summer term of approximately 13 weeks and two shortened sessions of about six weeks each.
Fall semesters will begin in late August and end in mid-December. Spring semesters will begin in early January and end in late April. Summer terms will begin in early May and end in early August.
What can I do to prepare for the semester conversion?
If you are close to graduation, make every reasonable attempt to complete your degree prior to the conversion to the semester system. If you cannot finish under the quarter system, make every attempt to complete all sequences of courses on the quarter system or delay beginning sequences until the conversion has taken place. Finally, consult with your academic advisor regarding questions you might have.
What are the advantages of the semester calendar?
The main academic advantage is that the pace of the semester system is less hectic than that of the quarter system. Because semesters are substantially longer than quarters, students will have more time to absorb and understand course material and more time to work on projects and papers.
With our conversion our calendar will be aligned with all public and most private colleges and universities to which our students transfer.
**For more detailed questions regarding credits, full-time status, graduation, transfer, tuition/fees, and much more, please contact your Academic Advisor. Financial Aid questions should be directed specifically to the Office of Financial Aid.