How to Learn

How Much Time Do College Students Spend on Homework

by Jack Tai | Oct 9, 2019 | Articles

Does college life involve more studying or socializing?

Find out how much time college students need to devote to their homework in order to succeed in class.

We all know that it takes hard work to succeed in college and earn top grades.

To find out more about the time demands of studying and learning, let’s review the average homework amounts of college students.

HowtoLearn.com expert, Jack Tai, CEO of OneClass.com shows how homework improves grades in college and an average of how much time is required.

How Many Hours Do College Students Spend on Homework?

Classes in college are much different from those in high school.

For students in high school, a large part of learning occurs in the classroom with homework used to support class activities.

One of the first thing that college students need to learn is how to read and remember more quickly. It gives them a competitive benefit in their grades and when they learn new information to escalate their career.

Taking a speed reading course that shows you how to learn at the same time is one of the best ways for students to complete their reading assignments and their homework.

different reading techniques

However, in college, students spend a shorter period in class and spend more time learning outside of the classroom.

This shift to an independent learning structure means that college students should expect to spend more time on homework than they did during high school.

In college, a good rule of thumb for homework estimates that for each college credit you take, you’ll spend one hour in the classroom and two to three hours on homework each week.

These homework tasks can include readings, working on assignments, or studying for exams.

Based upon these estimates, a three-credit college class would require each week to include approximately three hours attending lectures and six to nine hours of homework.

Extrapolating this out to the 15-credit course load of a full-time student, that would be 15 hours in the classroom and 30 to 45 hours studying and doing homework.

These time estimates demonstrate that college students have significantly more homework than the 10 hours per week average among high school students. In fact, doing homework in college can take as much time as a full-time job.

Students should keep in mind that these homework amounts are averages.

Students will find that some professors assign more or less homework. Students may also find that some classes assign very little homework in the beginning of the semester, but increase later on in preparation for exams or when a major project is due. 

There can even be variation based upon the major with some areas of study requiring more lab work or reading.

Do College Students Do Homework on Weekends?

Based on the quantity of homework in college, it’s nearly certain that students will be spending some of their weekends doing homework.

For example, if each weekday, a student spends three hours in class and spends five hours on homework, there’s still at least five hours of homework to do on the weekend.

how much time do college students spend on homework

When considering how homework schedules can affect learning, it’s important to remember that even though college students face a significant amount of homework, one of the best learning strategies is to space out study sessions into short time blocks.

This includes not just doing homework every day of the week, but also establishing short study blocks in the morning, afternoon, and evening. With this approach, students can avoid cramming on Sunday night to be ready for class.

What’s the Best Way to Get Help with Your Homework?

In college, there are academic resources built into campus life to support learning.

For example, you may have access to an on-campus learning center or tutoring facilities. You may also have the support of teaching assistants or regular office hours.

That’s why OneClass recommends a course like How to Read a Book in a Day and Remember It which gives a c hoice to support your learning. 

Another choice is on demand tutoring.

They send detailed, step-by-step solutions within just 24 hours, and frequently, answers are sent in less than 12 hours.

When students have on-demand access to homework help, it’s possible to avoid the poor grades that can result from unfinished homework.

Plus, 24/7 Homework Help makes it easy to ask a question. Simply snap a photo and upload it to the platform.

That’s all tutors need to get started preparing your solution.

Rather than retyping questions or struggling with math formulas, asking questions and getting answers is as easy as click and go.

Homework Help supports coursework for both high school and college students across a wide range of subjects. Moreover, students can access OneClass’ knowledge base of previously answered homework questions.

Simply browse by subject or search the directory to find out if another student struggled to learn the same class material.

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College Homework: What You Need to Know

  • April 1, 2020

Samantha "Sam" Sparks

  • Future of Education

Despite what Hollywood shows us, most of college life actually involves studying, burying yourself in mountains of books, writing mountains of reports, and, of course, doing a whole lot of homework.

Wait, homework? That’s right, homework doesn’t end just because high school did: part of parcel of any college course will be homework. So if you thought college is harder than high school , then you’re right, because in between hours and hours of lectures and term papers and exams, you’re still going to have to take home a lot of schoolwork to do in the comfort of your dorm.

College life is demanding, it’s difficult, but at the end of the day, it’s fulfilling. You might have had this idealized version of what your college life is going to be like, but we’re here to tell you: it’s not all parties and cardigans.

How Many Hours Does College Homework Require?

Stress from homework

Here’s the thing about college homework: it’s vastly different from the type of takehome school activities you might have had in high school.

See, high school students are given homework to augment what they’ve learned in the classroom. For high school students, a majority of their learning happens in school, with their teachers guiding them along the way.

In college, however, your professors will encourage you to learn on your own. Yes, you will be attending hours and hours of lectures and seminars, but most of your learning is going to take place in the library, with your professors taking a more backseat approach to your learning process. This independent learning structure teaches prospective students to hone their critical thinking skills, perfect their research abilities, and encourage them to come up with original thoughts and ideas.

Sure, your professors will still step in every now and then to help with anything you’re struggling with and to correct certain mistakes, but by and large, the learning process in college is entirely up to how you develop your skills.

This is the reason why college homework is voluminous: it’s designed to teach you how to basically learn on your own. While there is no set standard on how much time you should spend doing homework in college, a good rule-of-thumb practiced by model students is 3 hours a week per college credit . It doesn’t seem like a lot, until you factor in that the average college student takes on about 15 units per semester. With that in mind, it’s safe to assume that a single, 3-unit college class would usually require 9 hours of homework per week.

But don’t worry, college homework is also different from high school homework in how it’s structured. High school homework usually involves a take-home activity of some kind, where students answer certain questions posed to them. College homework, on the other hand, is more on reading texts that you’ll discuss in your next lecture, studying for exams, and, of course, take-home activities.

Take these averages with a grain of salt, however, as the average number of hours required to do college homework will also depend on your professor, the type of class you’re attending, what you’re majoring in, and whether or not you have other activities (like laboratory work or field work) that would compensate for homework.

Do Students Do College Homework On the Weekends?

Again, based on the average number we provided above, and again, depending on numerous other factors, it’s safe to say that, yes, you would have to complete a lot of college homework on the weekends.

Using the average given above, let’s say that a student does 9 hours of homework per week per class. A typical semester would involve 5 different classes (each with 3 units), which means that a student would be doing an average of 45 hours of homework per week. That would equal to around 6 hours of homework a day, including weekends.

That might seem overwhelming, but again: college homework is different from high school homework in that it doesn’t always involve take-home activities. In fact, most of your college homework (but again, depending on your professor, your major, and other mitigating factors) will probably involve doing readings and writing essays. Some types of college homework might not even feel like homework, as some professors encourage inter-personal learning by requiring their students to form groups and discuss certain topics instead of doing take-home activities or writing papers. Again, lab work and field work (depending on your major) might also make up for homework.

Laptop

Remember: this is all relative. Some people read fast and will find that 3 hours per unit per week is much too much time considering they can finish a reading in under an hour.The faster you learn how to read, the less amount of time you’ll need to devote to homework.

College homework is difficult, but it’s also manageable. This is why you see a lot of study groups in college, where your peers will establish a way for everyone to learn on a collective basis, as this would help lighten the mental load you might face during your college life. There are also different strategies you can develop to master your time management skills, all of which will help you become a more holistic person once you leave college.

So, yes, your weekends will probably be chock-full of schoolwork, but you’ll need to learn how to manage your time in such a way that you’ll be able to do your homework and socialize, but also have time to develop your other skills and/or talk to family and friends.

College Homework Isn’t All That Bad, Though

studying

Sure, you’ll probably have time for parties and joining a fraternity/sorority, even attend those mythical college keggers (something that the person who invented college probably didn’t have in mind). But I hate to break it to you: those are going to be few and far in between. But here’s a consolation, however: you’re going to be studying something you’re actually interested in.

All of those hours spent in the library, writing down papers, doing college homework? It’s going to feel like a minute because you’re doing something you actually love doing. And if you fear that you’ll be missing out, don’t worry: all those people that you think are attending those parties aren’t actually there because they, too, will be busy studying!

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Module 6: Learning Styles and Strategies

Class-time to study-time ratio, learning objectives.

  • Describe typical ratios of in-class to out-of-class work per credit hour and how to effectively schedule your study time

Class- and Study-Time Ratios

After Kai decides to talk to his guidance counselor about his stress and difficulty balancing his activities, his guidance counselor recommends that Kai create a schedule. This will help him set time for homework, studying, work, and leisure activities so that he avoids procrastinating on his schoolwork. His counselor explains that if Kai sets aside specific time to study every day—rather than simply studying when he feels like he has the time—his study habits will become more regular, which will improve Kai’s learning. 

At the end of their session, Kai and his counselor have put together a rough schedule for Kai to further refine as he goes through the next couple of weeks.

Although Kai knows that studying is important and he is trying to keep up with homework, he really needs to work on time management. This is challenging for many college students, especially ones with lots of responsibilities outside of school. Unlike high school classes, college classes meet less often, and college students are expected to do more independent learning, homework, and studying.

You might have heard that the ratio of classroom time to study time should be 1:2 or 1:3. This would mean that for every hour you spend in class, you should plan to spend two to three hours out of class working independently on course assignments. If your composition class meets for one hour, three times a week, you’d be expected to devote from six to nine hours each week on reading assignments, writing assignments, etc.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that the 1:2 or 1:3 ratio is generally more appropriate for semester long courses of 18 weeks. More and more institutions of higher learning are moving away from semesters to terms ranging from 16 to 8 weeks long.

The recommended classroom time to study time ratio might change depending on the course (how rigorous it is and how many credits it’s worth), the institution’s expectations, the length of the school term, and the frequency with which a class meets. For example, if you’re used to taking classes on a quarter system of 10 weeks, but then you start taking courses over an 8 weeks period, you may need to spend more time studying outside of class since you’re trying to learn the same amount of information in a shorter term period. You may also find that if one of the courses you’re taking is worth 1.5 credit hours but the rest of your courses are worth 1 credit hour each, you may need to put in more study hours for your 1.5 credit hour course. Finally, if you’re taking a course that only meets once a week like a writing workshop, you may consider putting in more study and reading time in between class meetings than the general 1:2 or 1:3 ratio.

If you account for all the classes you’re taking in a given semester, the study time really adds up—and if it sounds like a lot of work, it is! Remember, this schedule is temporary while you’re in school. The only way to stay on top of the workload is by creating a schedule to help you manage your time. You might decide to use a weekly or monthly schedule—or both. Whatever you choose, the following tips can help you design a smart schedule that’s easy to follow and stick with.

Start with Fixed Time Commitments

First off, mark down the commitments that don’t allow any flexibility. These include class meetings, work hours, appointments, etc. Capturing the “fixed” parts of your schedule can help you see where there are blocks of time that can be used for other activities.

Kai’s Schedule

Kai is taking four classes: Spanish 101, US History, College Algebra, and Introduction to Psychology. He also has a fixed work schedule—he works 27 hours a week.

Consider Your Studying and Homework Habits

When are you most productive? Are you a morning person or a night owl? Block out your study times accordingly. You’ll also want to factor in any resources you might need. For instance, if you prefer to study very early or late in the day, and you’re working on a research paper, you might want to check the library hours to make sure it’s open when you need it.

Since Kai’s Spanish class starts his schedule at 9:00 every day, Kai decides to use that as the base for his schedule. He doesn’t usually have trouble waking up in the mornings (except for on the weekends), so he decides that he can do a bit of studying before class. His Spanish practice is often something he can do while eating or traveling, so this gives him a bit of leniency with his schedule.

Kai’s marked work in grey, classes in green, and dedicated study time in yellow:

Even if you prefer weekly over monthly schedules, write reminders for yourself and keep track of any upcoming projects, papers, or exams. You will also want to prepare for these assignments in advance. Most students eventually discover (the hard way) that cramming for exams the night before and waiting till the last minute to start on a term paper is a poor strategy. Procrastination creates a lot of unnecessary stress, and the resulting final product—whether an exam, lab report, or paper—is rarely your best work. Try simple things to break down large tasks, such as setting aside an hour or so each day to work on them during the weeks leading up to the deadline. If you get stuck, get help from your instructor early, rather than waiting until the day before an assignment is due.

Schedule Leisure Time

It might seem impossible to leave room in your schedule for fun activities, but every student needs and deserves to socialize and relax on a regular basis. Try to make this time something you look forward to and count on, and use it as a reward for getting things done. You might reserve every Friday or Saturday evening for going out with friends, for example. Perhaps your children have sporting events or special occasions you want to make time for. Try to reschedule your study time so you have enough time to study and enough time to do things outside of school that you want to do.

Feet propped up in a hammock

When you look at Kai’s schedule, you can see that he’s left open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday evenings. While he plans on using Sundays to complete larger assignments when he needs to, he’s left his Friday and Saturday evenings open for leisure.

Now that you have considered ways to create a schedule, you can practice making one that will help you succeed academically. The California Community College’s Online Education site has a free source for populating a study schedule based on your individual course load.

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How Much Time Should I Spend Studying in College?

Setting Aside Study Time Can Make It Easier to Manage a Busy Schedule

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There's no "right" way to study in college. Even students who have the same majors and take the same classes won't need to spend the same amount of time on coursework because everyone has their own way of learning. That being said, there's a common rule of thumb students and professors use to determine how much time to allocate for studying in college: For each hour you spend in class, you should spend two to three hours studying outside of class.

How Should I Study?

Of course, that "outside of class" studying can take on different forms: You might take the "traditional" approach to studying by sitting in your room, poring over a textbook or reading assignment. Or perhaps you'll spend time online or in the library further researching topics your professor mentioned in class. Maybe you'll have a lot of lab work to do or a group project that requires meeting other students after class.

The point is studying can take many forms. And, of course, some classes require students to work outside of class a lot more time than others. Focus more on what sort of studying will help you complete your necessary coursework and get the most out of your education, rather than trying to meet a specific study-hours quota.

Why Should I Track How Much I Study?

While prioritizing the quality over the quantity of your study time is more likely to help you accomplish your academic goals, it's smart to keep track of how much time you spend doing it. First of all, knowing how much time to spend studying in college can help you gauge if you're spending enough time on your academics. For example, if you're not performing well on exams or assignments — or you get negative feedback from a professor — you can reference the amount of time you've spent studying to determine the best way to proceed: You could try spending more time studying for that class to see if it improves your performance. Conversely, if you've already invested a lot of time in that course, perhaps your poor grades are an indication it's not an area of study that suits you.

Beyond that, tracking how you study can also help you with time management , a skill all college students need to develop. (It's pretty handy in the real world, too.) Ideally, understanding your out-of-class workload can help you avoid cramming for exams or pulling all-nighters to meet an assignment deadline. Those approaches are not only stressful, but they're often not very productive either.

The better you understand how much time it takes you to engage with and comprehend the course material, the more likely you are to reach your academic goals. Think of it this way: You've already invested a lot of time and money going to class, so you might as well figure out how much time you need to do everything necessary for getting that diploma.

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Student Study Time Matters

Vicki nelson.

how much time should i spend on homework in college

Most college students want to do well, but they don’t always know what is required to do well. Finding and spending quality study time is one of the first and most important skills that your student can master, but it's rarely as simple as it sounds.

If a student is struggling in class, one of the first questions I ask is, “How much time do you spend studying?”

Although it’s not the only element, time spent studying is one of the basics, so it’s a good place to start. Once we examine time, we can move on to other factors such as how, where, what and when students are studying, but we start with time .

If your student is struggling , help them explore how much time they are spending on schoolwork.

How Much Is Enough?

Very often, a student’s answer to how much time they spend hitting the books doesn’t match the expectation that most professors have for college students. There’s a disconnect about “how much is enough?”

Most college classes meet for a number of “credit hours” – typically 3 or 4. The general rule of thumb (and the definition of credit hour adopted by the Department of Education) is that students should spend approximately 2–3 hours on outside-of-class work for each credit hour or hour spent in the classroom.

Therefore, a student taking five 3-credit classes spends 15 hours each week in class and should be spending 30 hours on work outside of class , or 45 hours/week total.

When we talk about this, I can see on students’ faces that for most of them this isn’t even close to their reality!

According to one survey conducted by the National Survey of Student Engagement, most college students spend an average of 10–13 hours/week studying, or less than 2 hours/day and less than half of what is expected. Only about 11% of students spend more than 25 hours/week on schoolwork.

Why Such a Disconnect?

Warning: math ahead!

It may be that students fail to do the math – or fail to flip the equation.

College expectations are significantly different from the actual time that most high school students spend on outside-of-school work, but the total picture may not be that far off. In order to help students understand, we crunch some more numbers.

Most high school students spend approximately 6 hours/day or 30 hours/week in school. In a 180 day school year, students spend approximately 1,080 hours in school. Some surveys suggest that the average amount of time that most high school students spend on homework is 4–5 hours/week. That’s approximately 1 hour/day or 180 hours/year. So that puts the average time spent on class and homework combined at 1,260 hours/school year.

Now let’s look at college: Most semesters are approximately 15 weeks long. That student with 15 credits (5 classes) spends 225 hours in class and, with the formula above, should be spending 450 hours studying. That’s 675 hours/semester or 1,350 for the year. That’s a bit more than the 1,260 in high school, but only 90 hours, or an average of 3 hours more/week.

The problem is not necessarily the number of hours, it's that many students haven’t flipped the equation and recognized the time expected outside of class.

In high school, students’ 6-hour school day was not under their control but they did much of their work during that time. That hour-or-so a day of homework was an add-on. (Some students definitely spend more than 1 hour/day, but we’re looking at averages.)

In college, students spend a small number of hours in class (approximately 15/week) and are expected to complete almost all their reading, writing and studying outside of class. The expectation doesn’t require significantly more hours; the hours are simply allocated differently – and require discipline to make sure they happen. What students sometimes see as “free time” is really just time that they are responsible for scheduling themselves.

Help Your Student Adjust to College Academics >

How to Fit It All In?

Once we look at these numbers, the question that students often ask is, “How am I supposed to fit that into my week? There aren’t enough hours!”

Again: more math.

I remind students that there are 168 hours in a week. If a student spends 45 hours on class and studying, that leaves 123 hours. If the student sleeps 8 hours per night (few do!), that’s another 56 hours which leaves 67 hours, or at least 9.5 hours/day for work or play.

Many colleges recommend that full-time students should work no more than 20 hours/week at a job if they want to do well in their classes and this calculation shows why.

Making It Work

Many students may not spend 30 or more hours/week studying, but understanding what is expected may motivate them to put in some additional study time. That takes planning, organizing and discipline. Students need to be aware of obstacles and distractions (social media, partying, working too many hours) that may interfere with their ability to find balance.

What Can My Student Do?

Here are a few things your student can try.

  • Start by keeping a time journal for a few days or a week . Keep a log and record what you are doing each hour as you go through your day. At the end of the week, observe how you have spent your time. How much time did you actually spend studying? Socializing? Sleeping? Texting? On social media? At a job? Find the “time stealers.”
  • Prioritize studying. Don’t hope that you’ll find the time. Schedule your study time each day – make it an appointment with yourself and stick to it.
  • Limit phone time. This isn’t easy. In fact, many students find it almost impossible to turn off their phones even for a short time. It may take some practice but putting the phone away during designated study time can make a big difference in how efficient and focused you can be.
  • Spend time with friends who study . It’s easier to put in the time when the people around you are doing the same thing. Find an accountability partner who will help you stay on track.
  • If you have a job, ask if there is any flexibility with shifts or responsibilities. Ask whether you can schedule fewer shifts at prime study times like exam periods or when a big paper or project is due. You might also look for an on-campus job that will allow some study time while on the job. Sometimes working at a computer lab, library, information or check-in desk will provide down time. If so, be sure to use it wisely.
  • Work on strengthening your time management skills. Block out study times and stick to the plan. Plan ahead for long-term assignments and schedule bite-sized pieces. Don’t underestimate how much time big assignments will take.

Being a full-time student is a full-time job. Start by looking at the numbers with your student and then encourage them to create strategies that will keep them on task.

With understanding and practice, your student can plan for and spend the time needed to succeed in college.

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how much time should i spend on homework in college

Table of Contents

Part 1 The Transition to College

  • Rhythm of the First Semester
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  • Who Is Your First‑Year Student?
  • Campus Resources: Your Cheat Sheet
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how much time should i spend on homework in college

  • Study Time Matters
  • The Importance of Professors and Advisors
  • Should My Student Withdraw from a Difficult Course?

Part 3 Health & Well-Being

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  • Assertiveness is the Secret Sauce
  • Is Your Student at Risk for an Eating Disorder?

Part 4 Life Outside the Classroom

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  • The Value of Outside Opportunities

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More than two hours of homework may be counterproductive, research suggests.

Education scholar Denise Pope has found that too much homework has negative impacts on student well-being and behavioral engagement (Shutterstock)

A Stanford education researcher found that too much homework can negatively affect kids, especially their lives away from school, where family, friends and activities matter.   "Our findings on the effects of homework challenge the traditional assumption that homework is inherently good," wrote Denise Pope , a senior lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Education and a co-author of a study published in the Journal of Experimental Education .   The researchers used survey data to examine perceptions about homework, student well-being and behavioral engagement in a sample of 4,317 students from 10 high-performing high schools in upper-middle-class California communities. Along with the survey data, Pope and her colleagues used open-ended answers to explore the students' views on homework.   Median household income exceeded $90,000 in these communities, and 93 percent of the students went on to college, either two-year or four-year.   Students in these schools average about 3.1 hours of homework each night.   "The findings address how current homework practices in privileged, high-performing schools sustain students' advantage in competitive climates yet hinder learning, full engagement and well-being," Pope wrote.   Pope and her colleagues found that too much homework can diminish its effectiveness and even be counterproductive. They cite prior research indicating that homework benefits plateau at about two hours per night, and that 90 minutes to two and a half hours is optimal for high school.   Their study found that too much homework is associated with:   • Greater stress : 56 percent of the students considered homework a primary source of stress, according to the survey data. Forty-three percent viewed tests as a primary stressor, while 33 percent put the pressure to get good grades in that category. Less than 1 percent of the students said homework was not a stressor.   • Reductions in health : In their open-ended answers, many students said their homework load led to sleep deprivation and other health problems. The researchers asked students whether they experienced health issues such as headaches, exhaustion, sleep deprivation, weight loss and stomach problems.   • Less time for friends, family and extracurricular pursuits : Both the survey data and student responses indicate that spending too much time on homework meant that students were "not meeting their developmental needs or cultivating other critical life skills," according to the researchers. Students were more likely to drop activities, not see friends or family, and not pursue hobbies they enjoy.   A balancing act   The results offer empirical evidence that many students struggle to find balance between homework, extracurricular activities and social time, the researchers said. Many students felt forced or obligated to choose homework over developing other talents or skills.   Also, there was no relationship between the time spent on homework and how much the student enjoyed it. The research quoted students as saying they often do homework they see as "pointless" or "mindless" in order to keep their grades up.   "This kind of busy work, by its very nature, discourages learning and instead promotes doing homework simply to get points," said Pope, who is also a co-founder of Challenge Success , a nonprofit organization affiliated with the GSE that conducts research and works with schools and parents to improve students' educational experiences..   Pope said the research calls into question the value of assigning large amounts of homework in high-performing schools. Homework should not be simply assigned as a routine practice, she said.   "Rather, any homework assigned should have a purpose and benefit, and it should be designed to cultivate learning and development," wrote Pope.   High-performing paradox   In places where students attend high-performing schools, too much homework can reduce their time to foster skills in the area of personal responsibility, the researchers concluded. "Young people are spending more time alone," they wrote, "which means less time for family and fewer opportunities to engage in their communities."   Student perspectives   The researchers say that while their open-ended or "self-reporting" methodology to gauge student concerns about homework may have limitations – some might regard it as an opportunity for "typical adolescent complaining" – it was important to learn firsthand what the students believe.   The paper was co-authored by Mollie Galloway from Lewis and Clark College and Jerusha Conner from Villanova University.

Clifton B. Parker is a writer at the Stanford News Service .

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Adolescent girl doing homework.

What’s the Right Amount of Homework?

Decades of research show that homework has some benefits, especially for students in middle and high school—but there are risks to assigning too much.

Many teachers and parents believe that homework helps students build study skills and review concepts learned in class. Others see homework as disruptive and unnecessary, leading to burnout and turning kids off to school. Decades of research show that the issue is more nuanced and complex than most people think: Homework is beneficial, but only to a degree. Students in high school gain the most, while younger kids benefit much less.

The National PTA and the National Education Association support the “ 10-minute homework guideline ”—a nightly 10 minutes of homework per grade level. But many teachers and parents are quick to point out that what matters is the quality of the homework assigned and how well it meets students’ needs, not the amount of time spent on it.

The guideline doesn’t account for students who may need to spend more—or less—time on assignments. In class, teachers can make adjustments to support struggling students, but at home, an assignment that takes one student 30 minutes to complete may take another twice as much time—often for reasons beyond their control. And homework can widen the achievement gap, putting students from low-income households and students with learning disabilities at a disadvantage.

However, the 10-minute guideline is useful in setting a limit: When kids spend too much time on homework, there are real consequences to consider.

Small Benefits for Elementary Students

As young children begin school, the focus should be on cultivating a love of learning, and assigning too much homework can undermine that goal. And young students often don’t have the study skills to benefit fully from homework, so it may be a poor use of time (Cooper, 1989 ; Cooper et al., 2006 ; Marzano & Pickering, 2007 ). A more effective activity may be nightly reading, especially if parents are involved. The benefits of reading are clear: If students aren’t proficient readers by the end of third grade, they’re less likely to succeed academically and graduate from high school (Fiester, 2013 ).

For second-grade teacher Jacqueline Fiorentino, the minor benefits of homework did not outweigh the potential drawback of turning young children against school at an early age, so she experimented with dropping mandatory homework. “Something surprising happened: They started doing more work at home,” Fiorentino writes . “This inspiring group of 8-year-olds used their newfound free time to explore subjects and topics of interest to them.” She encouraged her students to read at home and offered optional homework to extend classroom lessons and help them review material.

Moderate Benefits for Middle School Students

As students mature and develop the study skills necessary to delve deeply into a topic—and to retain what they learn—they also benefit more from homework. Nightly assignments can help prepare them for scholarly work, and research shows that homework can have moderate benefits for middle school students (Cooper et al., 2006 ). Recent research also shows that online math homework, which can be designed to adapt to students’ levels of understanding, can significantly boost test scores (Roschelle et al., 2016 ).

There are risks to assigning too much, however: A 2015 study found that when middle school students were assigned more than 90 to 100 minutes of daily homework, their math and science test scores began to decline (Fernández-Alonso, Suárez-Álvarez, & Muñiz, 2015 ). Crossing that upper limit can drain student motivation and focus. The researchers recommend that “homework should present a certain level of challenge or difficulty, without being so challenging that it discourages effort.” Teachers should avoid low-effort, repetitive assignments, and assign homework “with the aim of instilling work habits and promoting autonomous, self-directed learning.”

In other words, it’s the quality of homework that matters, not the quantity. Brian Sztabnik, a veteran middle and high school English teacher, suggests that teachers take a step back and ask themselves these five questions :

  • How long will it take to complete?
  • Have all learners been considered?
  • Will an assignment encourage future success?
  • Will an assignment place material in a context the classroom cannot?
  • Does an assignment offer support when a teacher is not there?

More Benefits for High School Students, but Risks as Well

By the time they reach high school, students should be well on their way to becoming independent learners, so homework does provide a boost to learning at this age, as long as it isn’t overwhelming (Cooper et al., 2006 ; Marzano & Pickering, 2007 ). When students spend too much time on homework—more than two hours each night—it takes up valuable time to rest and spend time with family and friends. A 2013 study found that high school students can experience serious mental and physical health problems, from higher stress levels to sleep deprivation, when assigned too much homework (Galloway, Conner, & Pope, 2013 ).

Homework in high school should always relate to the lesson and be doable without any assistance, and feedback should be clear and explicit.

Teachers should also keep in mind that not all students have equal opportunities to finish their homework at home, so incomplete homework may not be a true reflection of their learning—it may be more a result of issues they face outside of school. They may be hindered by issues such as lack of a quiet space at home, resources such as a computer or broadband connectivity, or parental support (OECD, 2014 ). In such cases, giving low homework scores may be unfair.

Since the quantities of time discussed here are totals, teachers in middle and high school should be aware of how much homework other teachers are assigning. It may seem reasonable to assign 30 minutes of daily homework, but across six subjects, that’s three hours—far above a reasonable amount even for a high school senior. Psychologist Maurice Elias sees this as a common mistake: Individual teachers create homework policies that in aggregate can overwhelm students. He suggests that teachers work together to develop a school-wide homework policy and make it a key topic of back-to-school night and the first parent-teacher conferences of the school year.

Parents Play a Key Role

Homework can be a powerful tool to help parents become more involved in their child’s learning (Walker et al., 2004 ). It can provide insights into a child’s strengths and interests, and can also encourage conversations about a child’s life at school. If a parent has positive attitudes toward homework, their children are more likely to share those same values, promoting academic success.

But it’s also possible for parents to be overbearing, putting too much emphasis on test scores or grades, which can be disruptive for children (Madjar, Shklar, & Moshe, 2015 ). Parents should avoid being overly intrusive or controlling—students report feeling less motivated to learn when they don’t have enough space and autonomy to do their homework (Orkin, May, & Wolf, 2017 ; Patall, Cooper, & Robinson, 2008 ; Silinskas & Kikas, 2017 ). So while homework can encourage parents to be more involved with their kids, it’s important to not make it a source of conflict.

Exhausted female student falls asleep at desk while studying at night

How much time should you spend studying? Our ‘Goldilocks Day’ tool helps find the best balance of good grades and  well-being

how much time should i spend on homework in college

Senior Research Fellow, Allied Health & Human Performance, University of South Australia

how much time should i spend on homework in college

Professor of Health Sciences, University of South Australia

Disclosure statement

Dot Dumuid is supported by an Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Early Career Fellowship GNT1162166 and by the Centre of Research Excellence in Driving Global Investment in Adolescent Health funded by NHMRC GNT1171981.

Tim Olds receives funding from the NHMRC and the ARC.

University of South Australia provides funding as a member of The Conversation AU.

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For students, as for all of us, life is a matter of balance, trade-offs and compromise. Studying for hours on end is unlikely to lead to best academic results. And it could have negative impacts on young people’s physical, mental and social well-being.

Our recent study found the best way for young people to spend their time was different for mental health than for physical health, and even more different for school-related outcomes. Students needed to spend more time sitting for best cognitive and academic performance, but physical activity trumped sitting time for best physical health. For best mental health, longer sleep time was most important.

It’s like a game of rock, paper, scissors with time use. So, what is the sweet spot, or as Goldilocks put it, the “just right” amount of study?

Read more: Back to school: how to help your teen get enough sleep

Using our study data for Australian children aged 11 and 12, we are developing a time-optimisation tool that allows the user to define their own mental, physical and cognitive health priorities. Once the priorities are set, the tool provides real-time updates on what the user’s estimated “Goldilocks day” looks like.

Stylised dial set between 'too little' and 'too much' to achieve 'perfect balance'.

More study improves grades, but not as much as you think

Over 30 years of research shows that students doing more homework get better grades. However, extra study doesn’t make as much difference as people think. An American study found the average grades of high school boys increased by only about 1.5 percentage points for every extra hour of homework per school night.

What these sorts of studies don’t consider is that the relationship between time spent doing homework and academic achievement is unlikely to be linear. A high school boy doing an extra ten hours of homework per school night is unlikely to improve his grades by 15 percentage points.

There is a simple explanation for this: doing an extra ten hours of homework after school would mean students couldn’t go to bed until the early hours of the morning. Even if they could manage this for one day, it would be unsustainable over a week, let alone a month. In any case, adequate sleep is probably critical for memory consolidation .

Read more: What's the point of homework?

As we all know, there are only 24 hours in a day. Students can’t devote more time to study without taking this time from other parts of their day. Excessive studying may become detrimental to learning ability when too much sleep time is lost.

Another US study found that, regardless of how long a student normally spent studying, sacrificing sleep to fit in more study led to learning problems on the following day. Among year 12s, cramming in an extra three hours of study almost doubled their academic problems. For example, students reported they “did not understand something taught in class” or “did poorly on a test, quiz or homework”.

Excessive study could also become unhelpful if it means students don’t have time to exercise. We know exercise is important for young people’s cognition , particularly their creative thinking, working memory and concentration.

On the one hand, then, more time spent studying is beneficial for grades. On the other hand, too much time spent studying is detrimental to grades.

We have to make trade-offs

Of course, how young people spend their time is not only important to their academic performance, but also to their health. Because what is the point of optimising school grades if it means compromising physical, mental and social well-being? And throwing everything at academic performance means other aspects of health will suffer.

US sleep researchers found the ideal amount of sleep for for 15-year-old boys’ mental health was 8 hours 45 minutes a night, but for the best school results it was one hour less.

Clearly, to find the “Goldilocks Zone” – the optimal balance of study, exercise and sleep – we need to think about more than just school grades and academic achievement.

Read more: 'It was the best five years of my life!' How sports programs are keeping disadvantaged teens at school

Looking for the Goldilocks Day

Based on our study findings , we realised the “Goldilocks Day” that was the best on average for all three domains of health (mental, physical and cognitive) would require compromises. Our optimisation algorithm estimated the Goldilocks Day with the best overall compromise for 11-to-12-year-olds. The breakdown was roughly:

10.5 hours of sleep

9.5 hours of sedentary behaviour (such as sitting to study, chill out, eat and watch TV)

2.5 hours of light physical activity (chores, shopping)

1.5 hours of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (sport, running).

We also recognised that people – or the same people at different times — have different priorities. Around exam time, academic performance may become someone’s highest priority. They may then wish to manage their time in a way that leads to better study results, but without completely neglecting their mental or physical health.

To better explore these trade-offs, we developed our time-use optimisation tool based on Australian data . Although only an early prototype, the tool shows there is no “one size fits all” solution to how young people should be spending their time. However, we can be confident the best solutions will involve a healthy balance across multiple daily activities.

Just like we talk about the benefits of a balanced diet, we should start talking about the benefits of balanced time use. The better equipped young people and those supporting them are to find their optimal daily balance of sleep, sedentary behaviours and physical activities, the better their learning outcomes will be, without compromising their health and well-being.

  • Mental health
  • Physical activity
  • Children's mental health
  • Children and sleep
  • Children's well-being
  • children's physical health
  • Sleep research

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Duke Learning Innovation and Lifetime Education

How Much Homework is Too Much?

When redesigning a course or putting together a new course, faculty often struggle with how much homework and readings to assign. Too little homework and students might not be prepared for the class sessions or be able to adequately practice basic skills or produce sufficient in-depth work to properly master the learning goals of the course. Too much and some students may feel overwhelmed and find it difficult to keep up or have to sacrifice work in other courses.

A common rule of thumb is that students should study three hours for each credit hour of the course, but this isn’t definitive. Universities might recommend that students spend anywhere from two or three hours of study or as much as six to nine hours of study or more for each course credit hour. A 2014 study found that, nationwide, college students self reported spending about 17 hours each week on homework, reading and assignments. Studies of high school students show that too much homework can produce diminishing returns on student learning, so finding the right balance can be difficult.

There are no hard and fast rules about the amount of readings and homework that faculty assign. It will vary according to the university, the department, the level of the classes, and even other external factors that impact students in your course. (Duke’s faculty handbook addresses many facets of courses, such as absences, but not the typical amount of homework specifically.)

To consider the perspective of a typical student that might be similar to the situations faced at Duke, Harvard posted a blog entry by one of their students aimed at giving students new to the university about what they could expect. There are lots of readings, of course, but time has to be spent on completing problem sets, sometimes elaborate multimedia or research projects, responding to discussion posts and writing essays. Your class is one of several, and students have to balance the needs of your class with others and with clubs, special projects, volunteer work or other activities they’re involved with as part of their overall experience.

The Rice Center for Teaching Excellence has some online calculators for estimating class workload that can help you get a general understanding of the time it may take for a student to read a particular number of pages of material at different levels or to complete essays or other types of homework.

To narrow down your decision-making about homework when redesigning or creating your own course, you might consider situational factors that may influence the amount of homework that’s appropriate.

Connection with your learning goals

Is the homework clearly connected with the learning goals of your students for a particular class session or week in the course? Students will find homework beneficial and valuable if they feel that it is meaningful . If you think students might see readings or assignments as busy work, think about ways to modify the homework to make a clearer connection with what is happening in class. Resist the temptation to assign something because the students need to know it. Ask yourself if they will actually use it immediately in the course or if the material or exercises should be relegated to supplementary material.

Levels of performance

The type of readings and homework given to first year students will be very different from those given to more experienced individuals in higher-level courses. If you’re unsure if your readings or other work might be too easy (or too complex) for students in your course, ask a colleague in your department or at another university to give feedback on your assignment. If former students in the course (or a similar course) are available, ask them for feedback on a sample reading or assignment.

Common practices

What are the common practices in your department or discipline? Some departments, with particular classes, may have general guidelines or best practices you can keep in mind when assigning homework.

External factors

What type of typical student will be taking your course? If it’s a course preparing for a major or within an area of study, are there other courses with heavy workloads they might be taking at the same time? Are they completing projects, research, or community work that might make it difficult for them to keep up with a heavy homework load for your course?

Students who speak English as a second language, are first generation students, or who may be having to work to support themselves as they take courses may need support to get the most out of homework. Detailed instructions for the homework, along with outlining your learning goals and how the assignment connects the course, can help students understand how the readings and assignments fit into their studies. A reading guide, with questions prompts or background, can help students gain a better understanding of a reading. Resources to look up unfamiliar cultural references or terms can make readings and assignments less overwhelming.

If you would like more ideas about planning homework and assignments for your course or more information and guidance on course design and assessment, contact Duke Learning Innovation to speak with one of our consultants .

Shield

Course Workload Estimator

A blog post that describes the genesis of this estimator, as well as some of its potential uses, can be read here . You can also find a stand-alone version of the estimator that can be embedded into your site here .

Estimation Details

Somewhat surprisingly, there is very little research about the amount of time it takes the average college student to complete common academic tasks. We have self-reported estimates of how much total time they spend on academic work outside of class (12-15 hours), but we don't know much about the quality and quantity of the work that is produced in that time frame (let alone how the time is allocated to different tasks). We also know quite a bit about how students tackle common academic tasks , but those studies rarely ask students to report on how long it takes them to complete the task (whether reading a book, writing a paper, or studying for an exam). The testing literature provides some clues (because valid instrument design depends on data about the average speed of test takers), but it's tough to generalize from the experience of taking high-stakes, timed tests to the experience of working on an assignment in the comfort of your dorm. And while there is a sizable literature on reading, the nature and purpose of the reading tasks in these experiments are also quite different from what students typically encounter in college.

All of which is to say the estimates above are just that: estimates .

To arrive at our estimates, we began with what we knew from the literature and then filled in the gaps by making a few key assumptions. The details of our calculations are below. If you still find our assumptions unreasonable, however, the estimator allows you to manually adjust our estimated rates. We also welcome those who have knowledge of research about which we are unaware to suggest improvements.

Reading Rates

Of all the work students might do outside of class, we know the most about their reading. Educators, cognitive psychologists, and linguists have been studying how human beings read for more than a century. One of the best summaries of this extensive literature is the late Keith Rayner's recently published " So Much to Read, So Little Time: How Do We Read, and Can Speed Reading Help? " A central insight of this piece (along with the literature it summarizes) is that none of us read at a constant rate. Instead, we use varying rates that depend on the difficulty and purpose of the reading task (Rayner et al., 2016; Love, 2012; Aronson, 1983; Carver, 1983, 1992; Jay and Dahl, 1975; Parker, 1962; Carrillo and Sheldon, 1952; Robinson, 1941). Another obvious (but rarely acknowledged) insight is that a page-based reading rate is going to vary by the number of words on the page. As a result, our estimator assumes that reading rate will be a function of three factors: 1) page density, 2) text difficulty, and 3) reading purpose. For the sake of simplicity, we limited the variation within each factor to three levels.

Page Density*

  • 450 words: Typical of paperback pages, as well as the 6" x 9" pages of academic journal articles
  • 600 words: Typical of academic monograph pages
  • 750 words: Typical of textbook pages that are 25% images, as well as the full-size pages of two-column academic journal articles

* estimates were determined by direct sampling of texts in our personal collection

Text Difficulty

  • No New Concepts: The reader knows the meaning of each word and has enough background knowledge to immediately understand the ideas expressed
  • Some New Concepts: The reader is unfamiliar with the meaning of some words and doesn't have enough background knowledge to immediately understand some of the ideas expressed.
  • Many New Concepts: The reader is unfamiliar with the meaning of many words and doesn't have enough background knowledge to immediately understand most of the ideas expressed

Reading Purpose

  • Survey: Reading to survey main ideas; OK to skip entire portions of text
  • Understand: Reading to understand the meaning of each sentence
  • Engage: Reading while also working problems, drawing inferences, questioning, and evaluating

What we know from the research:

The optimal reading rate of the skilled adult reader (including college students) is around 300 words per minute. This assumes a "normal" reading environment in which there are no new words or concepts in the text and the purpose of the reading is to understand the meaning of each sentence (Rayner et al., 2016; Carver, 1982).

Adults can read faster than 300 words per minute, but if the goal is to understand the meaning of sentences, rates beyond 300 words per minute reduce comprehension in a near linear fashion (Zacks and Treiman, 2016; Love, 2012; Carver, 1982).

The default reading rates of college students under these normal conditions can range from 100-400 words per minute (Rayner et al., 2016; Siegenthaler et al., 2011; Acheson et al., 2008; Carver, 1982, 1983, 1992; Underwood et al., 1990; Hausfeld, 1981; Just and Carpenter, 1980; Jay and Dahl, 1975; Grob, 1970; McLaughlin, 1969; Robinson and Hall, 1941).

There is no real upper limit on skimming speeds, but the average college student skims for main ideas at rates between 450 and 600 words per minute (Rayner et al., 2016; Carver 1992; Just and Carpenter, 1980; Jay and Dahl, 1975)

In conditions where the material is more difficult (i.e., with some new words and concepts), the optimal reading rate slows to 200 words per minute (Carver, 1992).

In conditions where the purpose is to memorize the text for later recall, the optimal reading rate slows even further to 138 words per minute or lower (Carver, 1992).

Although this has not been measured (to our knowledge), reading experts have argued that it is perfectly reasonable to slow down to rates below 50 words per minute if the goal is to engage a text (Parker, 1962).

What we don't know, but deduce and/or stipulate:

Given that the rates above were discovered in laboratory conditions, when subjects are asked to perform in short, time-constrained intervals, we assume that the reading rates in actual conditions, when students read for longer periods with periodic breaks, will be slightly slower.

Because there is no research on the time it takes students to engage texts, we assume that the rates would be similar to the rates found when students are asked to memorize a text for later recall. Although these are incredibly different tasks, both require attention to details alongside additional processing. If anything, we imagine equating these two rates significantly under estimates the time it takes to read for engagement (for an example of the sort of reading that is likely to take more time than it takes to memorize, see the appendix of Perry et al., 2015).

If the reading purpose remains the same, the change in reading rates across text difficulty levels is linear.

The rate of change in reading rates across text difficulty levels is the same across reading purposes.

Combining what we know with what we assume allows us to construct the following table of estimated reading rates (with rates about which we are most confident in yellow):

Writing Rates

Sadly, we know much less about student writing rates than we do about reading rates. This is no doubt because writing rates vary even more widely than reading rates. Nevertheless, we've found at least one study that can give us a place to begin. In " Individual Differences in Undergraduate Essay-Writing Strategies ," Mark Torrance and his colleagues find (among other things) that 493 students reported spending anywhere between 9 to 15 hours on 1500-word essays. In these essays, students were asked to produce a "critical description and discussion of psychological themes" using at least one outside source. Torrance and his colleagues also show that students who spent the least time reported no drafting, while those who spent the most time reported multiple drafts, along with detailed outlining and planning. And the students who spent the most time received higher marks than those who spent the least (Torrance et al., 2000).

Although the sample of this study is sizable, we should not read too much into a single result of student self-reports about a single assignment from a single institution. But to arrive at our estimates, we must. Users should simply be aware that the table below is far more speculative than our reading rate estimates. And that the time your students spend on these tasks is likely to vary from these estimates in significant ways.

As with reading rates, we assume that writing rates will be a function of a variety of factors. The three we take into account are 1) page density, 2) text genre, 3) degree of drafting and revision.

Page Density

  • 250 words: Double-Spaced, Times New Roman, 12-Point Font, 1" Margins
  • 500 words: Single-Spaced, Times New Roman, 12-Point Font, 1" Margins
  • Reflection/Narrative: Essays that require very little planning or critical engagement with content
  • Argument: Essays that require critical engagement with content and detailed planning, but no outside research
  • Research: Essays that require detailed planning, outside research, and critical engagement

Drafting and Revision

  • No Drafting: Students submit essays that were never revised
  • Minimal Drafting: Students submit essays that were revised at least once
  • Extensive Drafting: Students submit essays that were revised multiple times

What we assume to arrive at our estimates:

  • The results of the Torrance study are reasonably accurate.
  • The assignment in the study falls within the "argument" genre. It's hard to tell without more details, but "critical description and discussion" seems to imply more than reflection. And while an outside source was required, finding and using a single source falls well below the expectations of a traditional research paper.
  • Students write at a constant rate. That is, we assume that a student writing the same sort of essay will take exactly twice as much time to write a 12 page paper as she takes to write a 6 page paper. There are good reasons to think this assumption is unrealistic, but because we have no way of knowing how much rate might shift over the course of a paper, we assume constancy.
  • Students will spend less time writing a reflective or narrative essay than they spend constructing an argumentative essay (assuming the same degree of drafting and revision). For simplicity's sake, we assume they will spend exactly half the time. It's highly unlikely to be this linear, but we don't know enough to make a more accurate assumption.
  • Students will spend more time writing a research paper than they spend on their argumentative essays. Again, for simplicity's sake, we assume they will spend exactly twice the amount of time. It's not only unlikely to be this linear, it's also likely to vary greatly by the amount of outside reading a student does and the difficulty of the sources he or she tackles.

These assumptions allow us to construct the following table of estimated writing rates (with rates about which we are most confident in yellow):

Bibliography

Aaronson, Doris, and Steven Ferres. “Lexical Categories and Reading Tasks.” Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance 9, no. 5 (1983): 675–99. doi:10.1037/0096-1523.9.5.675.

Acheson, Daniel J., Justine B. Wells, and Maryellen C. MacDonald. “New and Updated Tests of Print Exposure and Reading Abilities in College Students.” Behavior Research Methods 40, no. 1 (2008): 278–89. doi:10.3758/BRM.40.1.278.

Carrillo, Lawrence W., and William D. Sheldon. “The Flexibility of Reading Rate.” Journal of Educational Psychology 43, no. 5 (1952): 299–305. doi:10.1037/h0054161.

Carver, Ronald P. “Is Reading Rate Constant or Flexible?” Reading Research Quarterly 18, no. 2 (1983): 190–215. doi:10.2307/747517.

———. “Optimal Rate of Reading Prose.” Reading Research Quarterly 18, no. 1 (1982): 56–88. doi:10.2307/747538.

———. “Reading Rate: Theory, Research, and Practical Implications.” Journal of Reading 36, no. 2 (1992): 84–95.

Dehaene, Stanislas. Reading in the Brain: The New Science of How We Read . Reprint edition. New York: Penguin Books, 2010.

Grob, James A. “Reading Rate and Study-Time Demands on Secondary Students.” Journal of Reading 13, no. 4 (1970): 285–88.

Hausfeld, Steven. “Speeded Reading and Listening Comprehension for Easy and Difficult Materials.” Journal of Educational Psychology 73, no. 3 (1981): 312–19. doi:10.1037/0022-0663.73.3.312.

Jay, S., and Patricia R. Dahl. “Establishing Appropriate Purpose for Reading and Its Effect on Flexibility of Reading Rate.” Journal of Educational Psychology 67, no. 1 (1975): 38–43. doi:10.1037/h0078669.

Just, Marcel A., and Patricia A. Carpenter. “A Theory of Reading: From Eye Fixations to Comprehension.” Psychological Review 87, no. 4 (1980): 329–54. doi:10.1037/0033-295X.87.4.329.

Love, Jessica. “ Reading Fast and Slow .” The American Scholar , March 1, 2012.

McLaughlin, G. Harry. “Reading at ‘Impossible’ Speeds.” Journal of Reading 12, no. 6 (1969): 449–510.

Parker, Don H. “Reading Rate Is Multilevel.” The Clearing House 36, no. 8 (1962): 451–55.

Perry, John, Michael Bratman, and John Martin Fischer. “ Appendix: Reading Philosophy .” In Introduction to Philosophy: Classical and Contemporary Readings , 7 edition. New York City, NY: Oxford University Press, 2015.

Rayner, Keith, Elizabeth R. Schotter, Michael E. J. Masson, Mary C. Potter, and Rebecca Treiman. “So Much to Read, So Little Time How Do We Read, and Can Speed Reading Help?” Psychological Science in the Public Interest 17, no. 1 (May 1, 2016): 4–34. doi:10.1177/1529100615623267.

Robinson, F., and P. Hall. “Studies of Higher-Level Reading Abilities.” Journal of Educational Psychology 32, no. 4 (1941): 241–52. doi:10.1037/h0062111.

Siegenthaler, Eva, Pascal Wurtz, Per Bergamin, and Rudolf Groner. “Comparing Reading Processes on E-Ink Displays and Print.” Displays 32, no. 5 (December 2011): 268–73. doi:10.1016/j.displa.2011.05.005.

Torrance, Mark, Glyn V. Thomas, and Elizabeth J. Robinson. “Individual Differences in Undergraduate Essay-Writing Strategies: A Longitudinal Study.” Higher Education 39, no. 2 (2000): 181–200.

Underwood, Geoffrey, Alison Hubbard, and Howard Wilkinson. “Eye Fixations Predict Reading Comprehension: The Relationships between Reading Skill, Reading Speed, and Visual Inspection.” Language and Speech 33, no. 1 (January 1, 1990): 69–81.

Wolf, Maryanne. Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain . Reprint edition. New York: Harper Perennial, 2008.

Zacks, Jeffrey M., and Rebecca Treiman. “ Sorry, You Can’t Speed Read .” The New York Times , April 15, 2016.

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Below are the most frequently asked questions about academic planning by UW students. If you can't find the answer you are looking for below or in our other academic planning pages, you can schedule an  appointment through our  appointment scheduler , by calling (206) 543-2550,  or by stopping by 141  Mary Gates Hall .

Courses/Credits

How many courses should I take? If you want to attend full-time, you should sign up for a schedule of courses that totals 12-17 credits. If you are on financial aid, or are an international student, or a student athlete, you must register for at least 12 credits.
What is a credit? You earn credit by completing courses. In general, one credit represents one hour in class per week. Many UW courses are 5 credits, and meet 5 hours per week. Most UW bachelor degrees require 180 credits. If you take 15 credits per quarter and attend three quarters per year, in four years you will have 180 credits.
How many credits/courses should I take? For most new students, a normal courseload is usually 12 -17 credits or three to four courses: two to three 5-credit courses, plus a third course that is anything from 2 credits to 5 credits. 
How much time will I spend studying/doing homework for class? College courses require much more study time than high school courses. In general, courses require two hours of homework for every hour of class. So, a 15-credit load should end up taking about 45 hours of time per week (15 hours of class time plus 30 hours of homework).
If classes last an hour, how much time do I have to get to the next class? Actually the University "hour" is 50 minutes, and you have 10 minutes to get to the next class if you're taking courses one right after another. Some classes meet for longer than 50 minutes, though - especially labs. And some classes meet for two long sessions each week instead of five hour-long sessions.
How do I find classes based on General Education Requirements (A&H, SSc, NSc etc)? The MyPlan course search tool  can help you find open general education courses  that are open and are at the time you need. For example, if you want to take an Social Science (SSc) course, but don’t know exactly which one, you can search for all open SSc courses between selected times and find out all your options.
What is the grading system at the UW? UW uses numerical grades, starting with 4.0 as the top grade and 0.0 the lowest. There are also pass-fail options. 
Is there a set standard for assigning grades? No. Each instructor determines what standards to use in a particular class. Some instructors may give a 4.0 grade to all students they think have done excellent work in the class, even if that's a substantial percent of the entire class. Other instructors grade on a bell curve, which means that more students end up with a grade in the middle, while a smaller percent receive either a very high or very low grade. The course syllabus, an outline of what's assigned and expected for the quarter, should be distributed the first week, and will include information on grading standards in the course.
How important are grades? It depends on how you intend to use them. If you plan to attend graduate or professional school, you'll need high grades (among other things) to get into better schools. Chances are, though, your future won't hinge on your getting a 3.83 rather than a 3.62 GPA.
What's a GPA? Grade Point Average. If you take three 5-credit courses and get a 3.6 in one, a 2.8 in one, and a 3.2 in the third, your GPA for that quarter will be 3.20. Grades are weighted by the number of credits in the course, so that a 2-credit course affects your GPA less than a 5-credit course.
How often are grades given? Grades that appear on your UW record are given at the end of each quarter. Within the quarter, each instructor may assign grades for papers, midterm exams, class participation, etc. The syllabus should show how various grades will be used to assign the final grade for the quarter. In one course, you may have a single final exam that determines your entire grade for the quarter, while in another course you could have weekly assignments or "quizzes" which, along with a midterm and a final exam, will add up to 100% of the final grade.
How will I find out what my grades are? Your grades will appear in MyUW about a week after your final examinations.
Will I be dropped from the UW if my grades are too low? As long as you maintain at least a 2.00 GPA, you won't be in danger of being dropped. Even if you don't do well your first quarter, you'll have two more quarters to improve before you're dropped from school. For further information about what happens if your GPA does fall below 2.00, see the Finding Help  page.
Is there a way to avoid the constant pressure of grades? There are two ways. The first is internal. Instead of worrying incessantly about what grade you might get in a specific class, concentrate on learning the material and getting help if you need it. Also, in your first few quarters at the UW you should make a real effort to discover what academic area interests you the most, instead of concentrating on what you think you need to do to get a job after college — or what your parents think you need to do. In the long run, you'll be much more successful in college, and after college, if you discover what you're interested in and take classes related to that interest. The second is external, tied to the UW grading system. You can take a few courses on what we call the "Satisfactory/Not Satisfactory" (S/NS) grading option, and they will not be calculated into your GPA. Be sure to see an adviser before deciding on this option. You can't take any courses you want to count toward requirements this way, and only a limited number of S/NS credits may count toward a degree. Also, some graduate and professional schools don't look favorably on S/NS grades.
Once I'm in a class, am I stuck with it no matter how hard it is or how far behind I get? No. You can "drop" a class, but this should never be done lightly for several reasons. First, there may be other options (e.g., talk to the professor and/or TA; change to S/NS grading; ask for an Incomplete; petition for a former quarter drop , etc.). Second, there may be financial penalties if you go below full-time status. Third, although a drop or two will not affect your chances for graduate or professional school, if you make a habit of dropping classes you might have to explain it later. The deadline for dropping a course or courses during a quarter is the final day of instruction (for summer quarter it is one week before the last day of instruction). Before exercising this option, be sure to see an adviser and/or read over the Current Quarter Drop policy. See the Academic Calendar for the specific drop deadlines.
What happens if I can't finish the quarter for whatever reason? You can withdraw for the quarter (unless the quarter is already over, which is too late). Dropping out for the quarter is not the same as dropping an individual class, and has different implications, so always discuss this option with an adviser. The adviser can help you plan how to withdraw from school with the fewest complications (such as failing grades) and show you how to get back in as soon as you're ready to return. If you are withdrawing because of a hardship, you should consider petitioning for a former quarter drop .           

Registration

Learn about different registration restrictions  you may encounter. 

When will I register for classes? Each quarter you attend the UW. There are three quarters in the academic year (autumn, winter, and spring), plus summer quarter if you wish to attend then as well. Courses you register for last only one quarter (normally 10 weeks plus finals). You register for the next quarter about halfway through the current quarter; so, if you are starting school in autumn, you'll register for winter quarter about halfway through autumn. Your registration date is based on your class standing and the registration date will appear in MyUW. You can also find your registration date by looking at the UW Academic Calendar .
The class I want is full, is there a way to see when it will become available again? You can sign up for Notify UW  to receive a text message or email when space becomes available in a course you are interested in during the quarter registration process
The class I want is full, who could I talk to? Contact department advisers Sometimes they know if the department plans to add space to the course, or if the instructor is taking a waiting list. Department advisers also usually know when in the future the course will be offered again. Contact the instructor Some instructors maintain waiting lists, although this isn’t common. Sometimes instructors will “overload” you into the course—although they aren’t required to overload, and most won’t do so until the quarter starts and they can see what the demand is. Some courses and some instructors never overload—but it never hurts to ask. 
The class I want is full, can I still attend class the first day of school? If you're the only student who wants an overload, your chances are good. Even if you're not the only student, if you go to class (so you don't miss material) and keep an eye on the online time schedule, you'll often find that someone drops the class in the first few days. There is a  lot  of schedule changing going on during the first few days of the quarter. Keep in mind that some departments and/or instructors don't overload. Check the department listings below to see each department's general policy regarding overloads.      
The class I want is full but it is "jointly-offered", what does that mean? Some UW courses are "jointly offered," which means one course is offered under two names.  You can enroll in a jointly-offered course under either title, and there may be registration restrictions under one title but not under the other, or one may be full while the other is still open. 

Academic support

Registration holds.

If you are on  academic warning  or  probation , a registration hold will be put on your account. Come talk to an adviser  for next steps.

All about registration

Learn more about course registration . 

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Understanding and Estimating Instructional Time and Homework

Introduction.

What counts as “class time” — especially when you are adapting a course to a new format like hybrid or online? How do you structure time to maximize engagement and (in online or hybrid situations) get the most out of synchronous or in-person time? Here we explain the relationship between instructional time, homework, and credit hours, so you can understand what Champlain and our accreditors require. We also discuss some options for instructional time that may be very different from what you would do in the classroom.

Credit Hours, Instructional Time, and Out-of-Class Work

Students’ class loads are measured in credit hours; a typical full-time load at Champlain is 15 hours, usually equaling five three-hour classes, although this may vary. The number of credit hours associated with a course is determined by the number of hours it “meets” per week — that is, the amount of instructional time. (This will vary for capstones, internships, and some other course types.)

Most faculty who teach in person are not used to thinking about instructional time. Instead, we think about the hours that we are in the classroom with our students each week. But we can learn from Champlain College Online and other online or blended modes of learning that instructional time can take different forms, many of which might not involve synchronous or in-person interaction.

The key characteristic of instructional time is interaction between instructor and students. The New England Commission on Higher Education (NECHE), Champlain’s accreditor, requires that we provide quality learning experiences that include “ regular, substantive academic interaction ” between instructor and students. Regular interaction means that the faculty member connects with students fairly frequently, in a way that students can grow to expect. Substantive interaction means that the faculty-student interaction is academic in nature and initiated by the instructor.

Therefore, in a hybrid or online course, instructional time is the total hours your students spend in synchronous activities AND asynchronous instructional equivalents like watching recorded lectures, taking quizzes via Canvas, participating in discussion forums, and activities you might normally do as a group, such as a virtual field trip or service project.

According to NECHE, alongside instructional time each week, students should spend approximately twice the number of hours they spend “in class” doing work for that class. That is, if a course is worth three credits (about two and a half hours of instructional time), on average students should be doing approximately five hours of preparation and out-of-class assignments each week, for a total of seven and a half hours of time committed to that course. Rice University’s Center for Teaching Excellence provides an interactive tool for estimating out-of-class student time commitments.

For more information on how this math works, please see Albright College’s explanation of Carnegie Units and credit hours .

Planning Online or Hybrid Instructional Time Equivalents

In the classroom, we know what constitutes instructional time: things we do when we are physically present with students. In fully online situations, we must consider the amount of time students are expected to spend on asynchronous instructional equivalents. In hybrid situations, we must carefully consider the mix of in-person and virtual interaction to calculate instructional time.

Virtual instructional time can involve adaptations of in-person instruction. It can also involve different kinds of activities. Some strategies for interactive, engaging instruction that does not take place through videoconference lecturing include:

Possible Adaptations of In-Person Instruction

  • Recorded lecture
  • Synchronous small group discussions, critiques, labs, projects, etc.
  • Asynchronous discussion forums
  • Quizzes and tests delivered via Canvas
  • Guest speaker virtual “visit” or webinar
  • Library education sessions or consultations with a research librarian (currently offered virtually)

Possible Instructional Time Innovations

  • One-on-one or small-group synchronous conversations with the instructor (similar to the tutorial system )
  • Individual real-world experiences shared through reflection or discussion (e.g., plant observation walk, interviewing a professional in the field, service learning, etc)
  • Virtual tours and field trips
  • Lecture-style slides, or written instructor-created content that would normally be delivered via lecture in class
  • Collaborative whiteboard, brainstorming, and/or problem-solving activities (synchronous or asynchronous)
  • Collaborative reading and annotation using a tool like Hypothesis or Perusall
  • Remote/virtual labs
  • Low-stakes surveys, quizzes, or check-ins
  • Peer review (synchronous or asynchronous)
  • Contributing to and commenting on a virtual gallery

There are many options! This list is not intended to be exhaustive. When deciding on instructional time activities, you should focus on options that are highly interactive (student-faculty and/or student-student) and/or focus on experiences like labs, field trips, interviews, or service learning.

Estimating Workloads

This wide range of strategies is great, and it raises an important question: how long does it take students to do these things? How do you get the amount of instructional time equivalents to roughly mirror the number of hours you would spend in a classroom with your students, when you students are completing tasks on their own time and may not work at the same speed?

First of all, something to consider: students generally work a lot less hard when they are sitting in a classroom taking part in an all-class discussion than they do when everyone is required to contribute a discussion post or two on Canvas. A group lab may be less work than a virtual one. The great thing about this is that your instruction can become much richer as students branch out into the things that most pique their interest. However, be aware that asynchronous instructional time can be much more mental labor and organizational work than some forms of classroom instruction, and so your students may be working harder for the same amount of instructional time, or may be spending more time than you think. Create your prompts, assignments, and grading schemes in a way that acknowledges this increased effort.

Pragmatically, here are some estimated amounts of time students might spend doing common virtual learning tasks. (We’re skipping over tasks that have a clearer time commitment like lecture videos and timed quizzes.)

  • Discussion posts: minimum of 30 minutes for a 250-word/one-paragraph post and skimming other posts. Direct responses to other students’ posts may take a little less time.
  • Blog post: approximately 30 minutes for a 250-word reflection post. If you require research or longer posts, allot at least an hour.
  • Case study activities: account for reading time as well as writing time, which will vary widely depending on the exercise. An optimal adult reader who reads visually, does not have reading-related disabilities, and is fluent in English can read about 300 words per minute with no new concepts. For new concepts, writing for an academic audience (eg. journal articles), special genres of writing (e.g. legal cases), or texts you want students to analyze deeply, estimate 150 words per minute. Allow writing time as above. Thus a case study analysis based on a news article–which is a great option for a discussion forum!–with a 250-word response might take 30-45 minutes. On the other hand, analysis of a fifteen-page journal article with a 250-word response could easily take an hour and a half or more.
  • Independently arranged interview, field trip, or service learning experience: make sure to add an estimate of the time it takes to arrange an experience (if students are doing that work) to the experience itself.

These suggested times may seem slow to you–but remember, you are estimating based on the speed of an average student.

We also provide a resource on strategies for balancing synchronous and asynchronous teaching , as well as some slides with examples of how to balance and estimate synchronous and asynchronous instructional time equivalents in different types of classes.

Works Consulted

Other institutions’ approaches.

  • Course Workload Estimator , Rice University Center for Teaching Excellence
  • Credit and Contact Hour and Instructional Equivalencies Guidelines , Valdosta State University
  • Guidelines for Instructional Time Equivalencies Across Formats/Assignment of Credit Hours , Misericordia University
  • Instructional Equivalencies Chart , Albright College

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how much time should i spend on homework in college

Students spend three times longer on homework than average, survey reveals

Sonya Kulkarni and Pallavi Gorantla | Jan 9, 2022

The+National+Education+Association+and+the+National+Parent+Teacher+Association+have+suggested+that+a+healthy+number+of+hours+that+students+should+be+spending+can+be+determined+by+the+10-minute+rule.+This+means+that+each+grade+level+should+have+a+maximum+homework+time+incrementing+by+10+minutes+depending+on+their+grade+level+%28for+instance%2C+ninth-graders+would+have+90+minutes+of+homework%2C+10th-graders+should+have+100+minutes%2C+and+so+on%29.

Graphic by Sonya Kulkarni

The National Education Association and the National Parent Teacher Association have suggested that a healthy number of hours that students should be spending can be determined by the “10-minute rule.” This means that each grade level should have a maximum homework time incrementing by 10 minutes depending on their grade level (for instance, ninth-graders would have 90 minutes of homework, 10th-graders should have 100 minutes, and so on).

As ‘finals week’ rapidly approaches, students not only devote effort to attaining their desired exam scores but make a last attempt to keep or change the grade they have for semester one by making up homework assignments.

High schoolers reported doing an average of 2.7 hours of homework per weeknight, according to a study by the Washington Post from 2018 to 2020 of over 50,000 individuals. A survey of approximately 200 Bellaire High School students revealed that some students spend over three times this number.

The demographics of this survey included 34 freshmen, 43 sophomores, 54 juniors and 54 seniors on average.

When asked how many hours students spent on homework in a day on average, answers ranged from zero to more than nine with an average of about four hours. In contrast, polled students said that about one hour of homework would constitute a healthy number of hours.

Junior Claire Zhang said she feels academically pressured in her AP schedule, but not necessarily by the classes.

“The class environment in AP classes can feel pressuring because everyone is always working hard and it makes it difficult to keep up sometimes.” Zhang said.

A total of 93 students reported that the minimum grade they would be satisfied with receiving in a class would be an A. This was followed by 81 students, who responded that a B would be the minimum acceptable grade. 19 students responded with a C and four responded with a D.

“I am happy with the classes I take, but sometimes it can be very stressful to try to keep up,” freshman Allyson Nguyen said. “I feel academically pressured to keep an A in my classes.”

Up to 152 students said that grades are extremely important to them, while 32 said they generally are more apathetic about their academic performance.

Last year, nine valedictorians graduated from Bellaire. They each achieved a grade point average of 5.0. HISD has never seen this amount of valedictorians in one school, and as of now there are 14 valedictorians.

“I feel that it does degrade the title of valedictorian because as long as a student knows how to plan their schedule accordingly and make good grades in the classes, then anyone can be valedictorian,” Zhang said.

Bellaire offers classes like physical education and health in the summer. These summer classes allow students to skip the 4.0 class and not put it on their transcript. Some electives also have a 5.0 grade point average like debate.

Close to 200 students were polled about Bellaire having multiple valedictorians. They primarily answered that they were in favor of Bellaire having multiple valedictorians, which has recently attracted significant acclaim .

Senior Katherine Chen is one of the 14 valedictorians graduating this year and said that she views the class of 2022 as having an extraordinary amount of extremely hardworking individuals.

“I think it was expected since freshman year since most of us knew about the others and were just focused on doing our personal best,” Chen said.

Chen said that each valedictorian achieved the honor on their own and deserves it.

“I’m honestly very happy for the other valedictorians and happy that Bellaire is such a good school,” Chen said. “I don’t feel any less special with 13 other valedictorians.”

Nguyen said that having multiple valedictorians shows just how competitive the school is.

“It’s impressive, yet scary to think about competing against my classmates,” Nguyen said.

Offering 30 AP classes and boasting a significant number of merit-based scholars Bellaire can be considered a competitive school.

“I feel academically challenged but not pressured,” Chen said. “Every class I take helps push me beyond my comfort zone but is not too much to handle.”

Students have the opportunity to have off-periods if they’ve met all their credits and are able to maintain a high level of academic performance. But for freshmen like Nguyen, off periods are considered a privilege. Nguyen said she usually has an hour to five hours worth of work everyday.

“Depending on the day, there can be a lot of work, especially with extra curriculars,” Nguyen said. “Although, I am a freshman, so I feel like it’s not as bad in comparison to higher grades.”

According to the survey of Bellaire students, when asked to evaluate their agreement with the statement “students who get better grades tend to be smarter overall than students who get worse grades,” responders largely disagreed.

Zhang said that for students on the cusp of applying to college, it can sometimes be hard to ignore the mental pressure to attain good grades.

“As a junior, it’s really easy to get extremely anxious about your GPA,” Zhang said. “It’s also a very common but toxic practice to determine your self-worth through your grades but I think that we just need to remember that our mental health should also come first. Sometimes, it’s just not the right day for everyone and one test doesn’t determine our smartness.”

how much time should i spend on homework in college

Welcome to Houston

Little and her middle school symphony orchestra win a first division award. They  had just participated in a competition called the Bluebonnet festival.

A passion for performing

As lead naturalist, junior Elyse Chious role is to give feedback to other naturalists. Zoo naturalists talk to guests about the zoos message of conservation.

Nature’s wildheart: Teen naturalist kindles love for the environment

Results from a TPP poll conducted on Instagram with 460 voters. Almost 40% of voters said that their parents barely ever check their grades.

Parental influence

Andy Shen inside the Orion Capsule in the Apollo Exhibit inside Space Center Houston.

HUMANS OF BELLAIRE – Andy Shen

The majority of Bellaire faculty and the Shared Decision-Making Committee voted for an eight-period schedule for the 2024-25 school year. In addition to eight periods a day, the new schedule also includes the dismissal time moving to 4 p.m., the discontinuation of zero periods and more elective options for students.

Eight a day

Congress and public forum students, including sophomore Catherine Xue, Samantha Tran, and junior Emerald Tang (left to right, second, sixth, ninth respectively) commemorate their time at TFA State 2024 with a photo booth. For Tang, this is her last tournament, but Xue and Tran look forward to competing at state next year.

‘Upping our game’

Senior and Mr. Bellaire winner Joshua Percy beams on the podium next to second- and third-place winners seniors Flynn Collins and Jermaine Hayden. All three of the top winners are members of Red Bird Productions.

Senior Joshua Percy wins Mr. Bellaire

Junior Kohlman Dutton scores a layup during the second quarter. Dutton was an integral part of the Cardinals comeback during the second quarter.

Falling short in the postseason

Junior Shelton Henderson flies in for a fast-break dunk.

Cardinals continue magical playoff run

Humans of Bellaire

Mackin (right) stands with older sisters Caroline and Celeste Mackin after her first marathon, the Sun Marathon. To commemorate the marathon, Mackin and her family went to get burgers, then grabbed Oreos and chocolate milk at the grocery store.

‘Running since day one’

For Adrien Starkss (bottom left) first concert, he went to Super Happy Fun Land in Houston. There he saw and took a photo with the band members of Pinkie Promise (singer Abby, drummer Kaelynn Wright, bassist Lola, and guitarists Ali and Leah.)

Finding sparks in concerts

Provided by Zachary Foust

HUMANS OF BELLAIRE – Zachary Foust

Junior Veda Manikonda poses with a super heavy lehenga. Heavier lehengas are usually worn for formal events, such as weddings. (Photo provided by VEDA MANIKONDA).

HUMANS OF BELLAIRE – Veda Manikonda

Junior Quinn Shefman snorkels along the coast of Portugal. She said what she saw under the water changed [her] perspective on the world.

‘All of these beautiful things’

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Comments (7)

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Anonymous • Nov 21, 2023 at 10:32 am

It’s not really helping me understand how much.

josh • May 9, 2023 at 9:58 am

Kassie • May 6, 2022 at 12:29 pm

Im using this for an English report. This is great because on of my sources needed to be from another student. Homework drives me insane. Im glad this is very updated too!!

Kaylee Swaim • Jan 25, 2023 at 9:21 pm

I am also using this for an English report. I have to do an argumentative essay about banning homework in schools and this helps sooo much!

Izzy McAvaney • Mar 15, 2023 at 6:43 pm

I am ALSO using this for an English report on cutting down school days, homework drives me insane!!

E. Elliott • Apr 25, 2022 at 6:42 pm

I’m from Louisiana and am actually using this for an English Essay thanks for the information it was very informative.

Nabila Wilson • Jan 10, 2022 at 6:56 pm

Interesting with the polls! I didn’t realize about 14 valedictorians, that’s crazy.

Utah State University

Search Utah State University:

Estimate study hours, “how many hours do i need to study”.

First-year college students are often academically successful in high school without spending much time studying outside of class. In fact, spending time in academic pursuits is frequently viewed within high school peer groups as “nerdy” or only for the “unintelligent.” Consequently, there can be a good deal of pressure to not study and you may hold a similar paradigm. It is helpful to realize that you came by this view honestly, as it is the framework under which high school often operates – a framework that is the foundation of your academic learning process (Balduf 2009).

However, now that you are in college you should understand that the rules of the game have changed. You may have heard that for every hour spent in a college class, you need or are expected to spend two hours outside of class studying. But have you taken the time to figure out exactly how many study hours this totals for you personally in a given week? Is it possible you are unaware of the time and effort necessary to succeed in college, regardless of how easy it appears for others? You may be surprised to find that although you feel like you study “all the time,” your disappointing grade on a particular exam is due to underestimating the time and study strategies it takes to learn college level material.

Participants attributed their high school successes to minor efforts. Not needing to do much to earn the success they wanted, these students were never taught, nor ever taught themselves, how to work through challenging issues. When these participants encountered challenging coursework in college, they were unprepared to deal with it. Additionally, several other aspects of participants’ experiences contributed to their college underachievement: inadequate study skills, poor time management, and internal versus external motivation. (Italics added for emphasis.)

According to the article, “Underachievement Among College Students,” in the Journal of Advanced Academics, a research study of college freshman on academic probation, but who were successful in high school, summarized (Balduf 2009):

Estimating Study Hours Based On Course Difficulty

Rather than focusing on the arbitrary two hours of study for every hour in class method for determining your needed study hours per week, the Estimating Study Hours worksheet will help you determine study time based on course difficulty as well. In other words, you may have more background knowledge (experience) in English than you do in math. In classes that are more difficult for you, it is not unusual to spend three to four hours a day in study and fewer in the classes with which you are more familiar.

Complete the Estimating My Weekly Study Hours Worksheet.

Estimating My Weekly Study Hours Worksheet

Final Thoughts: There’s no need to get discouraged or perfectionistic about a new study plan. Instead, the goal is to become aware how much time it takes to succeed in college. If it seems overwhelming or unrealistic to add this many hours to your study schedule, you have some options:

  • Consider taking fewer credits – believe it or not, college is not a race. It’s better to go a little slower and get better grades.
  • Try to keep your work hours less than 20-25 hours per week.
  • Try adding one more hour of study per day to begin with. This will increase your weekly total by 5 to 7 hours!

Balduf, Megan (2009). “Underachievement Among College Students.” Journal of Advanced Academics , Vol. 20, Num. 2, Winter 2009, 274-294

Jensen, Deborah, et. al. (2011). “Lab 2 – Time Management.” PSY 1730 Student Lab Packet , 6th Edition, 7-9

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How many hours should i take.

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  • Most of the work in college does not occur in class.  To be successful, students should budget twice as much time on homework as time spent in the classroom.  Budget three times the number of credit hours for online courses.
  • Consider work, family, and other obligations when creating class schedules.  Going to school full time (12 or more credit hours in a semester) is like having a full-time job!
  • You do NOT need to be enrolled full time to be eligible for financial aid . In most cases, six hours is the minimum to receive financial aid (one exception is for students living on campus).
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How to manage time in college

how much time should i spend on homework in college

You can probably get that done on time … and that’s coming from someone who managed to graduate with a decent GPA in high school while showing up to class with a single mechanical pencil in her pocket.

My unserious, Type B personality did not comprehend the challenges of time management in college had until I paid my way through. Now as a senior who works 23-plus hours a week this semester, a full-time student, an intern and a resident shepherd, I tell you, it can be done.

You’ve probably heard it before, but time management is everything; without it there wouldn’t be any check-offs on a to-do list, no red marks to scratch off those tasks.

In the first planner I ever bought, I scribbled everywhere. It was difficult to organize all of my thoughts under the big blueprint of August. The words jumbled together in a ball of mess — it was worth it. That semester all of my hard work paid off and I got through my first year of college successfully.

If it were as easy to manage time as simply buying a planner, I would tell you to invest in one right now, but the only thing coming between you and your balanced life is yourself. Let me explain.

I transferred in as a commuter. If I had a car at the time it would have been an easy eight-minute drive to campus. That wasn’t the case, at least not for every weekday. What could have been an eight-minute drive turned into an hour and a half on the Lynchburg transit. I worked full-time, managed 18 school credits and had to take the bus back around 8 p.m. before they discontinued the route for the night, another hour and a half back home.

Those long days are past me now, but crucial when looking back at my time at Liberty University. I stayed motivated, pushing myself to the finish line. I looked for any opportunities I could in order to build community in school, and becoming a Resident Shepherd (RS) happened to be just that.

The extra responsibility may sound overwhelming for some and although at times it can be, it has been the greatest blessing. I can live on campus now and enjoy the ability to walk anywhere. I get to truly be invested in the community and I can sit down and do homework right outside my workplace if I need to.

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) reported that 74% of students work at least part-time, while 40% of students work full-time, so for those who have no choice but to work to stay in school, you are not alone and getting your work completed can be done.

When you’re thinking, “I wish I had more time,” “I just have a lot to do,” “time doesn’t stop for anyone,” it all may be true, but choose to be strategic, stay motivated and set and maintain your boundaries — psychology textbooks teach this.

Say no to hanging out and playing games when you need to get that assignment done. Bring your school work everywhere. Set a designated time to sit and apply yourself to the tasks written in your planner. Prioritize your rest times.

Planning allows you to navigate time and use it to your advantage so you’re not feeling burned out while taking on so much all at once.

You, my friend, are the decision maker on making things happen.

Time may not be able to stop, but time management can be the cheat code to get all of your daily tasks checked off as finished.

Mella is an intern for the Liberty Champion

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Time on Task in Online Courses

Understanding how time “works” in online teaching and course design is often a challenge for online instructors, especially those new to online education. Four distinct yet related questions can express the challenge:

  • How do I determine the total time on task (per week and for the entire course) expected of students in my online course?
  • How can I calculate how much time students will actually need to complete the course assignments, assessments, and other tasks?
  • What should students be doing with their time to effectively and efficiently accomplish the goals and learning outcomes for my online course?
  • What should I be doing with my time as an online instructor? 

Let us address each of these questions in turn.

Determining Time on Task in Online Education

The academic credit model, developed on the Carnegie unit over 100 years ago, is based on classroom hours for students and corresponding contact hours for faculty. Online courses appear not to fit this model, as by definition they do not have face-to-face classroom/seat time. The consensus within U.S. higher education is that one college credit requires 15 hours of classroom time plus additional homework time for students (typically two or three hours per hour of classroom time). How can this model accommodate courses that have no seat time?

The answer to this question is to de-emphasize the course mode or "delivery" method (online, F2F, blended, hybrid, HyFlex, etc.) and focus instead on total time on task (by course and/or week). This is the approach taken by the New York State Education Department, Office of College and University Evaluation, in its current policies for distance/online learning. The relevant section is worth quoting in full:

Time on task is the total learning time spent by a student in a college course, including instructional time as well as time spent studying and completing course assignments (e.g., reading, research, writing, individual and group projects.) Regardless of the delivery method or the particular learning activities employed, the amount of learning time in any college course should meet the guideline of the Carnegie unit, a total of 45 hours for one semester credit (in conventional classroom education this breaks down into 15 hours of instruction plus 30 hours of student work/study out of class.) "Instruction" is provided differently in online courses than in classroom-based courses. Despite the difference in methodology and activities, however, the total "learning time" online can usually be counted. Rather than try to distinguish between "in-class" and "outside-class" time for students, the faculty member developing and/or teaching the online course should calculate how much time a student doing satisfactory work would take to complete the work of the course, including: Reading course presentations/ "lectures" Reading other materials Participation in online discussions Doing research Writing papers or other assignments Completing all other assignments (e.g. projects) The total time spent on these tasks should be roughly equal to that spent on comparable tasks in a classroom-based course. Time spent downloading or uploading documents, troubleshooting technical problems, or in chat rooms (unless on course assignments such as group projects) should not be counted. In determining the time on task for an online course, useful information include: The course objectives and expected learning outcomes The list of topics in the course outline or syllabus; the textbooks, additional readings, and related education materials (such as software) required Statements in course materials informing students of the time and/or effort they are expected to devote to the course or individual parts of it A listing of the pedagogical tools to be used in the online course, how each will be used, and the expectations for participation (e.g., in an online discussion, how many substantive postings will be required of a student for each week or unit?) Theoretically, one should be able to measure any course, regardless of delivery method, by the description of content covered. However, this is difficult for anyone other than the course developer or instructor to determine accurately, since the same statement of content (in a course outline or syllabus) can represent many different levels of breadth and depth in the treatment of that content, and require widely varying amounts of time.

In sum, regardless of course mode or type of learning activities assigned, the total amount of student time on task for any RIT course (on-campus, online, independent study, capstone, etc.) should total 45 hours per credit/contact hour. To get the total number of time-on-task hours, multiply 45 times the number of credits. For a 3-credit course, for instance, that works out to 135 hours total. In practical terms, the 45 hours per credit is a minimum recommendation, as many programs at RIT and elsewhere expect more time on task per credit hour.

The hours per week vary depending upon the length (in weeks) of the course. See Figure 1 below for a breakdown of the time on task for RIT’s 3-credit course formats. To get the time-on-task hours per week, divide the total hours per course by the number of weeks. For a 1-week online course, for example, the instructor and/or course developer knows that students can expect to spend a minimum of 9 hours per week on course work.

Calculating the Time Needed To Complete Specific Online Tasks

The above guidelines from the New York State Education Department address how to determine not only total time on task, but also the time needed to complete specific learning tasks. For a variety of factors, it is far more challenging to determine the latter than the former. One of the biggest factors, of course, is student variability in ability, experience, and motivation.  Nonetheless, the higher education literature does offer at least four viable methods for calculating completion times for learning tasks in any course mode:

  • The experiential method. The least studied, but probably the most common method. As McDaniel (2011) wrote, “Faculty can use their experience to estimate the time and effort needed by the typical student to engage successfully in each of the learning activities in a particular field, course, and program…Using these estimates, the designers of courses determine if students have the requisite time to meet course expectations.”
  • The proxy method. Similar to the experiential method, but with a formula. Here the instructor and/or course designer first calculates how much time it takes them to complete a given task, and this figure is then multiplied by some factor. As Carnegie Mellon University (2013) explains to their faculty, “To calculate how long it will take students to read an article or complete an assignment, you can estimate that your students will take three to four times longer to read than it takes you.”
  • The survey method. Involves surveying students after they have completed a given task. Carnegie Mellon University (2013) advises faculty “to ask students how long it took them to do various assignments, and use this information in future course planning.”
  • The “workload estimator” tool . Built by an award-winning team originally at Rice University, but now at the Wake Forest University’s Center for Teaching Excellence (Wake Forest University, 2021), instructors at any university can use this online tool to calculate “completion times” for Reading, Writing, and Exams along a continuum of variables, including page density, number of new concepts, difficulty, and purpose.   

Learning Time for Students in Online Courses

Having addressed the determination of time on task, and the calculation of completion times for learning tasks, let us move on to the matter of what students can and should be doing with their time to effectively and efficiently accomplish the goals and learning outcomes for their online courses.

Despite some significant differences in communication technologies and pedagogical methods, online courses are similar to on-campus courses in many important respects. As we have seen, total time on task is the same for online and on-campus courses of equal lengths. Additionally, an online course will have the identical goals and learning outcomes as its on-campus counterpart. The online course must be equal in content and challenge as the on-campus course (Vai & Sosulski, 2011).

How students spend their time in on-campus and online courses is directly related to the assignments, assessments, and other tasks given by instructors. In the classroom portion of on-campus courses , students typically do some of the following activities:

  • Listen to and take notes on lectures, presentations, and multimedia.
  • Participate in whole-class and small-group discussions with other students and the instructor.
  • Engage in experiential learning activities, such as labs, studios, field trips, and simulations.
  • Practice developing new competencies.
  • Take quizzes or exams.
  • Write short in-class essays.

Students typically do the following as outside-class activities in on-campus courses :

  • Read articles and books.
  • Review class notes.
  • Solve homework problems.
  • Conduct and write-up research.
  • Complete projects and other major assignments.
  • Prepare classroom presentations.
  • Meet with instructor during their office hours.

The same categories of learning tasks or activities exist in both course modes, though online instructors usually modify the on-campus activities to make best use of online communication technologies and pedagogies. It should be noted that on-campus instructors are increasing incorporating online learning tools and methods into their courses. Here are several representative samples of on-campus learning activities that have been modified for the online learning environment:

  • An asynchronous video lecture may be an instructor’s commentary on the readings, with some links to illustrative images, media, or text.
  • Small-group work may be a quick breakout in a synchronous web meeting or an extended discussion in the asynchronous discussion.
  • Experiential learning activities can be virtual labs, in-person interviews, activities within the community, and actual or virtual field trips.
  • Either the synchronous web meeting or the whole-class asynchronous discussion area will allow the instructor to expand upon the lecture. It also facilitates post-lecture Q & A and general student interaction.

As these samples suggest, online teaching and design (especially in asynchronous formats) incorporates and, at the same time, changes the discrete on-campus activities. The online lecture is both lecture and reading. Individual time and effort spent in small-group work is visible and persistent (unlike face-to-face group work) and consists of research, reading, and writing. Experiential learning activities include student reports back to the instructor and/or the entire class. Whole-class online discussion is reading, writing, and (ideally) instructor-to-student and peer-to-peer feedback/review.

Example Tasks and Completion Times for One Week of an Online Course

Here is an example of one week (9 hours) of learning tasks or activities and respective completion times for a 15-week, 3-credit course:

  • Three, 15-minute chunked lectures (text or video) that cover one course topic each; links to illustrative web resources are included in each mini-lecture (1 hour).
  • Assume that students spend additional time to review these lectures and explore the links to web resources (1/2 hour).
  • Assign readings (1 hour).
  • Require students to complete a ten-item online quiz to check their understanding of key terms and concepts from the readings and lectures (1 hour).
  • Assign a discussion topic on a contemporary issue with a triple-layer response requirement (i.e., original post, responses to other classmates’ posts, responses to responses) (2 hours).
  • Stipulate that small groups meet in their web-conferencing “room” and/or asynchronous discussion area to work on an iterative deliverable for their group project; for example, discussing and producing an outline of their final report (1 and 1/2 hour).
  • Work on final research paper/project and presentation, which are due at the end of the course (2 hours).  

Instructional Time for Faculty in Online Courses

The following (Vai & Sosulski, 2011) is most likely how an instructor spends their time in an asynchronous online course, assuming they are both designing and teaching or “delivering” the course:

  • Designing the course and creating/curating the course materials . This is typically accomplished before the course begins, and therefore not counted in calculating online teaching time.
  • Posting new information after the course has been fully designed and is “live.” In response to contemporary events and student needs/interests, the instructor is putting up announcements with just-in-time videos, calling attention to relevant material outside the course shell, posting commentaries on the discussions and other activities in the course, etc., as needed.
  • Checking in on student interactions, participation, and questions about the course. This most typically happens in a dedicated discussion area (i.e., a Q & A or Ask the Instructor discussion forum), but also in email and in other ways and “places” online, such as blogs, wikis, web-conferencing meetings, etc.
  • Giving feedback on assignments.  Activities such as providing written comments (along with grades) when using the grade book, and giving more extensive written feedback on student worked that is posted to the assignment tool in the course.
  • Class management . Includes activities such as sending out reminders of assignments that are due, grouping/pairing of students for team projects, and introducing new assignments and requirements.

Carnegie Mellon University, 2013. Solve a teaching problem: Assign a reasonable amount of work . Retrieved Dec. 2, 2021.

McDaniel, E. A. (2011). Level of student effort should replace contact time in course design. Journal of Information Technology Education , 10(10).

Vai, M. & Sosulski, K. (2011). Essentials of online course design: A standards-based guide . New York and London: Routledge.

Wake Forest University, 2021. Workload estimator 2.0 . Retrieved Dec. 2, 2021.

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Dr. Sam Goldstein

How Much Time Should Be Spent On Homework?

  • Dr. Sam Goldstein , Sydney S. Zentall

Dr. Sam Goldstein

At the elementary level we suggest that homework is brief, at your child’s ability level and involve frequent, voluntary and high interest activities. Young students require high levels of feedback and/or supervision to help them complete assignments correctly. Accurate homework completion is influenced by your child’s ability, the difficulty of the task and the amount of feedback your child receives. When assigning homework, your child’s teachers may struggle to create a balance at this age between ability, task difficulty and feedback. Unfortunately, there are no simple guiding principles. We can assure you, however, that your input and feedback on a nightly basis is an essential component in helping your child benefit from the homework experience. In first through third grade, students should receive one to three assignments per week, taking them no more than fifteen to twenty minutes. In fourth through sixth grade, students should receive two to four assignments per week, lasting between fifteen and forty-five minutes. At this age, the primarily goal of homework is to help your child develop the independent work and learning skills that will become critical in the higher grades. In the upper grades, the more time spent on homework the greater the achievement gains.

For students in middle and high school grades there are greater overall benefits from time engaged in practicing and thinking about school work. These benefits do not appear to depend as much upon immediate supervision or feedback as they do for elementary students. In seventh through ninth grade we recommend students receive three to five sets of assignments per week, lasting between forty-five and seventy-five minutes per set. In high school students will receive four to five sets of homework per week, taking them between seventy-five and 150 minutes per set to complete.

As children progress through school, homework and the amount of time engaged in homework increases in importance. Due to the significance of homework at the older age levels, it is not surprising that there is more homework assigned. Furthermore, homework is always assigned in college preparatory classes and assigned at least three quarters of the time in special education and vocational training classes. Thus at any age, homework may indicate our academic expectations of children.

Regardless of the amount of homework assigned, many students unsuccessful or struggling in school, spend less rather than more time engaged in homework. It is not surprising that students spending less time completing homework may eventually not achieve as consistently as those who complete their homework. Does this mean that time devoted to homework is the key component necessary for achievement? We are not completely certain. Some American educators have concluded that if students in America spent as much time doing homework as students in Asian countries they might perform academically as well. It is tempting to assume such a cause and effect relationship. However, this relationship appears to be an overly simple conclusion. We know that homework is important as one of several influential factors in school success. However, other variables, including student ability, achievement, motivation and teaching quality influence the time students spend with homework tasks. Many students and their parents have told us they experience less difficulty being motivated and completing homework in classes in which they enjoyed the subject, the instruction, the assignments and the teachers.

The benefits from homework are the greatest for students completing the most homework and doing so correctly. Thus, students who devote time to homework are probably on a path to improved achievement. This path also includes higher quality instruction, greater achievement motivation and better skill levels.

This column is excerpted and condensed from, Seven Steps to Homework Success: A Family Guide for Solving Common Homework Problems by Sydney S. Zentall, Ph.D. and Sam Goldstein, Ph.D. (1999, Specialty Press, Inc.).

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How Much Time Should Be Spent on Homework?

Student doing homework with clock

At the elementary level homework should be brief, at your child’s ability level and involve frequent, voluntary and high interest activities. Young students require high levels of feedback and/or supervision to help them complete assignments correctly. Accurate homework completion is influenced by your child’s ability, the difficulty of the task, and the amount of feedback your child receives. When assigning homework, your child’s teachers may struggle to create a balance at this age between ability, task difficulty and feedback. Unfortunately, there are no simple guiding principles.

We can assure you, however, that your input and feedback on a nightly basis is an essential component in helping your child benefit from the homework experience.

What is the recommended time in elementary school?

In first through third grade, students should receive one to three assignments per week, taking them no more than fifteen to twenty minutes. In fourth through sixth grade, students should receive two to four assignments per week, lasting between fifteen and forty-five minutes. At this age, the primarily goal of homework is to help your child develop the independent work and learning skills that will become critical in the higher grades. In the upper grades, the more time spent on homework the greater the achievement gains.

What is the recommended time in middle and high school?

For students in middle and high school grades there are greater overall benefits from time engaged in practicing and thinking about school work. These benefits do not appear to depend as much upon immediate supervision or feedback as they do for elementary students. In seventh through ninth grade we recommend students receive three to five sets of assignments per week, lasting between forty-five and seventy-five minutes per set. In high school students will receive four to five sets of homework per week, taking them between seventy-five and 150 minutes per set to complete.

As children progress through school, homework and the amount of time engaged in homework increases in importance. Due to the significance of homework at the older age levels, it is not surprising that there is more homework assigned. Furthermore, homework is always assigned in college preparatory classes and assigned at least three quarters of the time in special education and vocational training classes. Thus at any age, homework may indicate our academic expectations of children.

Regardless of the amount of homework assigned, many students unsuccessful or struggling in school spend less rather than more time engaged in homework. It is not surprising that students spending less time completing homework may eventually not achieve as consistently as those who complete their homework.

Does this mean that time devoted to homework is the key component necessary for achievement?

We are not completely certain. Some American educators have concluded that if students in America spent as much time doing homework as students in Asian countries they might perform academically as well. It is tempting to assume such a cause and effect relationship.

However, this relationship appears to be an overly simple conclusion. We know that homework is important as one of several influential factors in school success. However, other variables, including student ability, achievement, motivation and teaching quality influence the time students spend with homework tasks. Many students and their parents have told us they experience less difficulty being motivated and completing homework in classes in which they enjoyed the subject, the instruction, the assignments and the teachers.

The benefits from homework are the greatest for students completing the most homework and doing so correctly. Thus, students who devote time to homework are probably on a path to improved achievement. This path also includes higher quality instruction, greater achievement motivation and better skill levels.

Authors: Dr. Sam Goldstein and Dr. Sydney Zentall

how much time should i spend on homework in college

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COMMENTS

  1. How much time is realistically spent on homework? : r/college

    Being in college people tell me they spend 8+ hours a day on school work, I just cant even begin to imagine doing that much, i feel accomplished spending 2-3 hours a day, even when i have nothing going on. ... The amount of time spent on homework varies for each person in college. Some spend 8+ hours a day, while others feel accomplished with 2 ...

  2. How Much Time Do College Students Spend on Homework

    However, in college, students spend a shorter period in class and spend more time learning outside of the classroom. This shift to an independent learning structure means that college students should expect to spend more time on homework than they did during high school. In college, a good rule of thumb for homework estimates that for each ...

  3. College Homework: What You Need to Know

    While there is no set standard on how much time you should spend doing homework in college, a good rule-of-thumb practiced by model students is 3 hours a week per college credit. It doesn't seem like a lot, until you factor in that the average college student takes on about 15 units per semester.

  4. Class-Time to Study-Time Ratio

    Unlike high school classes, college classes meet less often, and college students are expected to do more independent learning, homework, and studying. You might have heard that the ratio of classroom time to study time should be 1:2 or 1:3. This would mean that for every hour you spend in class, you should plan to spend two to three hours out ...

  5. How Much Time to Spend Studying in College

    How Much Time Should I Spend Studying in College? There's no "right" way to study in college. Even students who have the same majors and take the same classes won't need to spend the same amount of time on coursework because everyone has their own way of learning. That being said, there's a common rule of thumb students and professors use to ...

  6. Student Study Time Matters

    Some surveys suggest that the average amount of time that most high school students spend on homework is 4-5 hours/week. That's approximately 1 hour/day or 180 hours/year. So that puts the average time spent on class and homework combined at 1,260 hours/school year. Now let's look at college: Most semesters are approximately 15 weeks long.

  7. More than two hours of homework may be counterproductive, research

    In places where students attend high-performing schools, too much homework can reduce their time to foster skills in the area of personal responsibility, the researchers concluded. "Young people are spending more time alone," they wrote, "which means less time for family and fewer opportunities to engage in their communities." Student perspectives

  8. What's the Right Amount of Homework?

    When students spend too much time on homework—more than two hours each night—it takes up valuable time to rest and spend time with family and friends. A 2013 study found that high school students can experience serious mental and physical health problems, from higher stress levels to sleep deprivation, when assigned too much homework ...

  9. How much time should you spend studying? Our 'Goldilocks Day' tool

    Over 30 years of research shows that students doing more homework get better grades. However, extra study doesn't make as much difference as people think. ... more time spent studying is ...

  10. How Much Homework is Too Much?

    Universities might recommend that students spend anywhere from two or three hours of study or as much as six to nine hours of study or more for each course credit hour. A 2014 study found that, nationwide, college students self reported spending about 17 hours each week on homework, reading and assignments. Studies of high school students show ...

  11. Course Workload Estimator

    And the students who spent the most time received higher marks than those who spent the least (Torrance et al., 2000). Although the sample of this study is sizable, we should not read too much into a single result of student self-reports about a single assignment from a single institution. But to arrive at our estimates, we must.

  12. UW Undergraduate Advising: Frequently asked questions

    How much time will I spend studying/doing homework for class? College courses require much more study time than high school courses. In general, courses require two hours of homework for every hour of class. So, a 15-credit load should end up taking about 45 hours of time per week (15 hours of class time plus 30 hours of homework).

  13. Understanding and Estimating Instructional Time and Homework

    According to NECHE, alongside instructional time each week, students should spend approximately twice the number of hours they spend "in class" doing work for that class. That is, if a course is worth three credits (about two and a half hours of instructional time), on average students should be doing approximately five hours of preparation ...

  14. Students spend three times longer on homework than average, survey

    A survey of approximately 200 Bellaire High School students revealed that some students spend over three times this number. The demographics of this survey included 34 freshmen, 43 sophomores, 54 juniors and 54 seniors on average. When asked how many hours students spent on homework in a day on average, answers ranged from zero to more than ...

  15. Estimate Study Hours

    First-year college students are often academically successful in high school without spending much time studying outside of class. In fact, spending time in academic pursuits is frequently viewed within high school peer groups as "nerdy" or only for the "unintelligent." Consequently, there ...

  16. How Many Hours Should I Take?

    Most of the work in college does not occur in class. To be successful, students should budget twice as much time on homework as time spent in the classroom. Budget three times the number of credit hours for online courses. Consider work, family, and other obligations when creating class schedules. Going to school full time (12 or more credit ...

  17. How to manage time in college

    Bring your school work everywhere. Set a designated time to sit and apply yourself to the tasks written in your planner. Prioritize your rest times. Planning allows you to navigate time and use it ...

  18. How Many Hours of Work Per Online Course Credit

    A good rule of thumb is to dedicate six hours a week for each credit hour you take — so for a standard three credit class, you can expect to spend 18 hours per week on it. In other words, if you are signed up for two or three courses during a session and each course is worth three credits, you should plan to spend between 36 to 54 hours a ...

  19. Time on Task in Online Courses

    In sum, regardless of course mode or type of learning activities assigned, the total amount of student time on task for any RIT course (on-campus, online, independent study, capstone, etc.) should total 45 hours per credit/contact hour. To get the total number of time-on-task hours, multiply 45 times the number of credits.

  20. Outside of Classes, How Many Hours Per Week do you Spend on ...

    I've read before that for every hour of class time, you should expect to spend 2-3 hours on outside school work for the class. I'm curious if this rings true for people here, or if you tend to spend less time than that, or more. like 15-20 hrs a week probably. 15-25. Your comment in r/college was automatically removed because your account is ...

  21. What's the right amount of homework for my students?

    This framework is also endorsed by the National Parent Teacher Association National Parent Teachers Association. According to this rule, time spent on homework each night should not exceed: 30 minutes in 3 rd grade. 40 minutes in 4 th grade. 50 minutes in 5 th grade.

  22. How Much Time Should Be Spent On Homework?

    In high school students will receive four to five sets of homework per week, taking them between seventy-five and 150 minutes per set to complete. As children progress through school, homework and the amount of time engaged in homework increases in importance. Due to the significance of homework at the older age levels, it is not surprising ...

  23. How Much Time Should Be Spent on Homework?

    In high school students will receive four to five sets of homework per week, taking them between seventy-five and 150 minutes per set to complete. As children progress through school, homework and the amount of time engaged in homework increases in importance. Due to the significance of homework at the older age levels, it is not surprising ...