Wise Guide

Semesters-in-Residence Requirement

Every Temple student must have the equivalent of six full-time or eight part-time semesters-in-residence in addition to completing the required number of credits. A student who remains a full-time or part-time student throughout his/her law school career and registers within the semester hour requirements will satisfy this requirement. It is the student who changes status or wants to graduate early who must consult with the Associate Dean for Students to make sure he/she satisfies this rule.

Briefly, semesters-in-residence are calculated as follows:

Full-Time Students
Each semester that a student is registered as a full-time student and takes a minimum of 12 credits in a semester after the first year is counted as one semester in residence. A full-time student cannot graduate in fewer than six full-time semesters. Summer study will allow a full-time student to carry a lighter load during the last academic year, but will not permit a student to graduate in less than six actual full-time semesters (not the mathematical equivalent thereof). A full-time student who has taken 3 or more credits during the summer may take a reduced load of 11 credits in either the fifth or sixth semester only and still be considered a full-time student. A full-time student must be a Day Division student.
Part-Time Students

A part-time student must attend eight part-time semesters to graduate. The first year mandated program is counted as two part-time semesters. Thereafter, a part-time student will earn a part-time semester in residence for each semester in which he/she takes 8 or more credits. A part-time student may accelerate graduation by one semester provided he/she takes at least 8 credits, which are not otherwise required by his/her program, during summer sessions.

A part-time JD/MBA student wishing to accelerate graduation by one semester may not apply more than 6 credits from any one summer toward the 8 summer credits needed to meet the residency requirement.

Students who move between full-time and part-time status
Students who move between full-time and part-time status must attend the equivalent of six full-time semesters (not the mathematical equivalent thereof) as determined by the Assistant Dean for Students. These students are strongly encouraged to meet with the Associate Dean to make sure they are in compliance. Failure to comply may delay graduation.

The following are examples of calculations used to determine the number of semesters-in-residence. Remember that the determination that the residency requirement has been satisfied is not a mathematical equivalency and must be made by the Associate Dean for Student Affairs.

  • One first year full-time semester = 1.00 semester-in-residence
  • One first year part-time semester = .75 semester-in-residence
  • Full-time student taking 12 or more credits in a semester = 1.00 semester-in-residence
  • Part-time student taking 8 or more credits in a semester = .75 semester-in-residence
  • One five credit domestic summer session or six credit summer session abroad = .50 semester-in-residence
  • One two or three credit summer session = .25 semester-in-residence
  • A full-time student who has taken three or more credits during the summer who elects to underload to 11 credits during the fifth or sixth semester = 1.00 semester-in residence