The most important part of the USA Education System is “Credit”. The credits are a unit of study which together specifically make up a course. The number of credits required for the completion of a course, vary depending on the type of the course and the university which offers it.
In general, international students need to achieve 12 credits per semester to continue his/her studies, but can eventually take more.
Working on the basis of 12 credits per semester, three semesters per year and four years per degree, and taking into account exam periods, an undergraduate degree would require the student to gain around 130 credits in total, similarly a graduate program would require roughly between 45-60 credits.
The work load, as said before depends on the total number of credits. These credits play an important role in the flexibility that a student gets during pursuing his/her graduation or post-graduation. There are always two criteria in which the student should fall in order to get the graduation done, GPA (Grade Point Average) and Credits. If a student is unable to make it into either of these categories, he/she won’t be able to complete the graduation or the course they are into.
Flexibility mainly comes into play when a student is perfect on credits but short on GPA, they can then either take a subject ‘out-of-course’ to shoot up their GPA. These subjects have to compulsorily be relevant to the course which is been taken by the student. A student can only make his course flexible if he/she gets an option to cross out the subject which he/she has already studied.
The faculties of the universities judge the students based on different criteria including written exams, oral presentations, essays, group work or participation in discussions within the class. All of these things are been used to finally grade a student at the end of the year, which fall between A (Highest) and F (Fail).
A grade point average (GPA) is then calculated, with a 4.00 being awarded for every A grade, 3.00 for every B grade, and so on down to 0.00 for an F.