Time management is one of the biggest challenges for college students as they balance school, work, personal, and family/relationship resposibilities. It is important that students be informed and realistic about how much time it takes to be a successful college student.
How Many Units?
Students taking 12 units are considered full time. Student athletes and students covered by family health insurance are among the students who must be full time. Students who have financial aid or scholarships must maintain the number of units specified by the financial services they are receiving.
The number of units for each course is based on the number of hours per week spent in class. For instance, English 100, which is a 4-unit class, meets 4 hours per week. Courses with labs or other additional time requirements meet for more hours. In addition to the time spent in class, a successful student must dedicate 2-3 hours of study time outside of class for every hour in class. In other words, a student taking 12 units is spending 12 hours in class and 24-36 hours outside of class in order to succeed. A full-time student has a full-time job just being a student.
Courses and students vary. However, students should consider these guidelines when planning for each semester.
|Work Hours Per Week||Units Per Semester|
|40 hours||6 units|
|30 hours||9 units|
|20 hours||12 units|
|5-15 hours||14-16 units|
How Many Units for How Long?
Students who start at SRJC in college-level courses can use this estimated timeline to see how long it will take to reach their goals. Taking summer session courses can shorten this time.
# of Classes Per Semester Number of Years to Reach Your Goal
|Certificate Program (CTE)||Associate Degree||Bachelor's Degree|
|One class (3 units)||5 Years||10 Years||20 Years|
|Two Classes (6 units)||2-3 Years||5 Years||10 Years|
|Three Classes (9 units)||1.5 - 2 Years||3.5 Years||6.5-7 Years|
|Four Classes (12 units)||1-2 Years||2.5 Years||5 Years|
|Five Classes (15 units)||1-2 Years||2 Years||4 Years|
Tools to Manage Time
Students use various strategies to manage their time. Below are a few ideas:
- SRJC Schedule Planner
- Calendar on your Smart Phone
- Day Planner that can be purchased in a stationery store
- Time Management worksheet