Explainer: GPA, Credit Hours and Everything You Probably Didn’t Understand At Orientation

If you were like us, nothing you heard at orientation made sense, probably due to intense pressure and because the speakers were speaking in pure academic language.

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Allow us to explain certain key details to you.

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A semester is what you called a “term” in high school. In the university, there are two semesters-the first and the second. You will take different courses during your 8-semester stay in school.


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To trail a course in the university means to fail. You trail a course when you are not able to score a total of 50% and above after an addition of all your quizzes, assignments and examination conversions. You can re-sit a course after you trail, by paying a fee.


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When you defer your course, it means you wish to continue pursuing your course later on other than the present. It is just like writing a letter to your SHS class teacher telling him why you can’t be present, except out here, you defer a whole semester. It could be because of ill health, finance or any other reason. Make sure you discuss with your head of department.

Credit Hours

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Credit hours are the number of hours you are supposed to interact with your instructor handling a course. Here in UEW, every course is allotted 3 credit hours. You are supposed to complete three hours of lectures with the lecturer of a course every week. Some lecturers might have a lecture-hall class for only 2 hours and exhaust the remaining one hour through radio lecturers at Radio Windy Bay, while others might exhaust the whole three hours in the lecture theatre. Multiply the number of courses you registered for in a semester by 3 and you have your total credit hours which represents the number of hours you’re supposed to spend at lectures in a week.


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GPA is an an acronym for Grade Point Average. The GPA is a way the university assesses your performance every semester; this is what determines your class during graduation. It is ranked on a 4.0 scale which is the highest you can attain. It is easy to determine your GPA to see if you are doing well or need to put in more effort. To calculate your semester’s GPA, just add all your grade values and divide by the total number of credit hours.

Department and Faculty

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Yes, there’s a big difference people! The department is a subset of the faculty. The faculty in your SHS would have been say the General Arts Department while the department would have been courses like Geography, History Government.

Okay guys, that was simple right? If there’s anything you’d want us to clarify, just leave it in the comment section.






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