Continuing Education Unit

The Continuing Education Unit (CEU) is the standard unit of measurement of individual participation in non-credit continuing education programs offered by the School of Continuing Education (SCE).

THE CEU is not awarded for learning activities in which individuals are engaged in unplanned, unsupervised or non-sponsored learning. A learning event is assigned a number of CEUs (cf H4) before being added to the learning event inventory of the Management Information System (MIS) by the Strategic Enrollment Management (SEM) Office Scheduling & Student Services Associate Director. Re-calculation of CEUs is taken place in the event of a major change in course content, method of delivery, equipment/software or demographic audience (cf H5). It is the responsibility of the SEM Scheduling & Student Services Associate Director to ensure that learning events are assigned CEUs on the MIS and that any changes in the learning event CEUs are reflected on the MIS.

One (1) CEU is defined as ten (10) contact hours of learner interaction with allowed learning activity content in support of learning outcomes. One (1) contact hour is equivalent to 60 minutes of clock hour interaction between the learner and the class faculty or between a learner and materials, which have been prepared to cause learning.

Contact Time (hours) =

 (total minutes of all activities) – (total minutes of non-allowable activities)

 60 minutes

*Number of CEUs = 

Contact Time (hours)


*Rounded to the nearest tenth                                               


When appropriate, a decimal part of a CEU may be awarded. However, CEU's are not expressed past the tenth place, i.e. 1.78 CEU = 1.8 CEU.

Non-allowable learning activities include unplanned, unsupervised, and unsponsored activities such as breaks, non-working lunches, group pictures/awards ceremonies, and other non-instructional contact time/anything promotional in nature. Allowed learning activities include classroom, self-paced instruction, distance learning, pre/post assignments, and other projects in support of a learning outcome. The following learning activities are allowed activities to be included when calculating contact hours for CEUs:

Class/Meetings: Classroom or meeting session time led by faculty and/or discussion leader.

Self-Paced Learning Events: Learner activities in which a learner is engaged in a planned program of learning whereby the learner’s progress is monitored and the learner receives feedback. Examples include independent study; computer-assisted

instruction, interactive video, and planned projects.

Assessment/Quizzes/Written Assignments: Learner assessment and program evaluations.

Outside Assignments: Field trips, projects, and assignments, which are an integral part of a course or program, may count towards contact hours. However, a standard number of hours should be assigned using the averaging method where a representative sample of the intended audience is selected and each participant, in the sample, records the actual time spent completing the assignment; the average is calculated by dividing the total recorded times by the sample size.

Laboratory Assignments: Laboratory assignments tend to be an integral part of a planned program and are generally more structured than field experiences. If the conditions for learning are consistent and the amount of time for assignments fairly even for all learners, each hour of lab time can be counted as a contact hour. If there is considerable variation in lab conditions and time required for the completion of assignments by different learners, establishing a standard number of contact hours should be considered based on the average time utilized by a number of learners.

Field Experiences: Field experiences provide learners opportunities to gain practical and realistic experiences, which cannot be acquired in a classroom setting. Such activities may or may not be highly structured, may vary in duration from one learner and location to another, and may not be readily calculated into contact hours. Field experiences are viewed in terms of tasks to be accomplished rather than the amount of time involved. If the field experience hours are needed to be counted, it should be first determined whether the field experience meets the ANSI/IACET Standard. If so, a standard number of contact hours could be determined by calculating the average time spent by several learners in different field experiences as discussed above. The following activities are not intended to receive the CEU:

Academic Credit Courses: Acceptance of IACET CEUs for college credit is at the discretion of the college or university.

Association Membership and Leadership Activities: Holding membership or serving in some leadership capacity in an association or society do not qualify for the CEU.

Committee Meetings: Participation in committee meetings and activities do not qualify for the CEU.

Entertainment and Recreation: CEUs may not be awarded for attendance at cultural performances, entertainment, or recreational activities unless they are an integral part of a planned course, which meets the ANSI/IACET Standard.

Individual Scholarship: CEUs may not be awarded for independent writings such as articles, books, research reports, or presentations of papers outside a planned, directly supervised continuing education experience that fulfills the CEU criteria.

Mass Media Programs: Programs delivered through the mass media (e.g., television, radio, newspaper) do not qualify for CEUs unless these presentations are an integral part of a planned course, which meets the ANSI/IACET Standard.

Some Meetings, Conventions, and Exhibitions: Meetings, conventions, and exhibitions, which attract large numbers of participants, involve different activities, and are conducted primarily for information sharing purposes generally, do not qualify for the CEU. Planned learning activities within such events, which meet the ANSI/IACET Standard are eligible for CEUs.

Travel: Travel or participation in a travel study program, do not qualify for CEUs unless the educational component of the travel study program meets the ANSI/IACET Standard.

Unsupervised Study: Individual, self-directed study or other form of independent learning experience not planned, directed, and supervised by a sponsor do not qualify for CEUs.

Work Experience: On-the-job training and other work experiences do not qualify for CEUs unless the work experience is structured as part of a planned and supervised continuing education experience that meets the Standard. CEUs are not to be awarded for life or previous work experiences.

Youth Programs: Programs designed primarily for ages below adulthood.

In asynchronous learning or self-paced learning, the appropriate number of contact hours, that the average learner takes to complete, shall be established using an appropriate and defensible approach (time analysis by sample learners, course time pilots by third-party analysis (SMEs)…etc) (cf H4) evaluating the learning time based on the learning event’s learning outcomes and learning strategies. In all asynchronous / self-paced learning, average completion time shall be monitored and CEUs are recalculated when necessary.


 PPM: H1 July 2019