Hiram College uses an innovative academic program which is designed to strengthen the educational partnership between faculty and students that has always defined a Hiram education. The Hiram Plan combines the best aspects of a traditional semester calendar with the benefits of the intensive educational opportunities offered through concentration on a single course.

Through the Hiram Plan, each academic semester is divided into parts of term: the 12-week and the 3-week, with the option of courses offered in two 8-week parts of term.

During the 12-week part of term,  students usually enroll in three courses of four semester hours each. The longer part of term provides a suitable format for courses which cover a broad range of material, allows students to integrate what they learn in their concurrent classes, and provides opportunities for substantial research and writing projects.

During the 3-week part of term, each student enrolls in one three- or four-credit seminar or course, each of which will have a limited enrollment. Each faculty member will teach only one course or seminar during the three-week part of term. These intensive classes provide students and faculty with numerous special opportunities that are not possible in the 12-week part of term. The students and faculty participating in a seminar can, for example, meet at any time or location mutually agreeable. Faculty have developed special topic courses which include field trips, experiential learning, and numerous study abroad opportunities. The 3-week part of term provides students with an intensive learning opportunity, which is useful preparation for work or graduate and professional studies after Hiram. Perhaps most importantly, the experience of small class sizes and daily class meetings enable students and faculty to form close, educationally meaningful relationships that often last a lifetime.

For students interested in online or blended course offerings, Hiram also offers two 8-week parts of term each fall, spring, and summer semester. These courses maintain Hiram’s intimate and engaging learning environment while being flexible enough for students with full-time work schedules.

Courses offered through our consortial agreements with Acadium and Lower Cost Models Consortium (LCMC) are 15 weeks.  

Parts of Term Graphic showing how the 8-week and 15-week overlap with the 12- and 3-week parts of term.