FAQs: Block Calendar


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FAQs: Block Calendar

Contact us if you do not find the answer to your question in the FAQs below. 

FAQs: Block Calendar

Rio Salado College's academic calendar is divided into 16 blocks each term. Each block is 16 weeks long with a fixed start and end date. The summer term has 8 block starts.

When you register for classes, you'll also select a start date for your classes. Your start date determines your block for that term. All classwork for that term must be completed within your block's fixed start and end date. About Block Calendar.

  • A term block is 16 weeks in length.
  • Each term block begins on a Monday and ends on a Saturday.
  • You can stagger class start dates within most term blocks if all classes for the term begin and end within the term block.
  • Term blocks cannot overlap. For example, you cannot begin your spring term block until after the fall term block end date.

Rio Salado College, like the other nine Maricopa Community Colleges, offers degrees and certificates to students on a term calendar. Rio Salado College has three terms: Fall, spring and summer. Each term provides flexibility allowing:

  • 16 blocks, or start dates for program seekers (those planning on earning a certificate or degree or field of study from Rio Salado) in fall and spring
  • 8 blocks for program seekers in summer
  • 16 class start dates for non-program seekers

If you are working toward earning a degreecertificate or program of study from Rio Salado, you'll select a start date and then complete all classes for that term within your block's start and end date. 

The block calendar does not apply to the following programs or student populations at Rio Salado:

  • Non-program seekers
  • Dual enrollment
  • On-site incarcerated programs
  • Non-credit programs
  • Academic certificates

The block calendar does apply to you if you are a program seeker:

  • A student pursuing a degree, certificate or program of study (for example, education post baccalaureate) at Rio Salado

A program seeker is a student pursuing a degree, certificate or program of study (for example, education post baccalaureate) at Rio Salado College.

If you are taking classes at Rio Salado and not seeking a degree or certificate, you do not have to fit your classes within the block calendar. You can choose any of the 48 class start dates each year for your classes without taking the blocks into consideration. This is also true for students who intend to earn their degree or certificate at another college and at Rio Salado are:

  • Taking one class a term
  • Taking a few classes

You can start your next term as a program seeker only after all your current courses as a non-program seeking student are officially scheduled to end. Contact Admissions, Registration and Records with questions at 480-517-8540.

Some academic programs at Rio Salado College have a specialized block calendar that differs from the standard block calendar. Contact Academic Advisement to learn about the block calendars associated with your program of study.

Each block is 16 weeks long. A 16-week course spans an entire block. That course would determine your block start date.

You can add more classes if the course end dates will be before or on the block end date.

Most of Rio Salado's classes are 8, 14 or 16 weeks in length. The shorter the class length, the more time you need to devote to your studies for it. Here are a few scheduling scenarios:

  • If you want to enroll in 6 credits per term: Take two classes, each 14 or 16 weeks in length, or two, 8-week classes.
  • If you want to enroll in 12 credits per term: Take four classes, each 14 or 16 weeks in length, or four, 8-week classes.

When you need to change your academic block, you can complete a block transfer. Block transfers can only be completed at the transition from one term to the next and the new term block must begin after the end date of the prior term block. Term Blocks cannot overlap.

Most colleges do have "blocks"– three blocks each year in which you can start classes: Fall, spring and summer. Rio Salado lets you choose from 48 blocks each year. You can start your classes on your time schedule. 

Extensions are granted at the discretion of your instructor. They are not guaranteed.

You can request a course end-date extension if it does not extend beyond your block end date. In RioLearn, you can request an extension if it is past your block end date.

Contact the Admissions, Registration and Records office at 480-517-8540 with questions about the Block Calendar system.