Skip to Content

The following are answers to frequently asked questions regarding load balancing.

View Load Balancing Procedures for Full-Time Faculty (PDF).


What is load balancing?

Per LRCFT contract section 4.6.2, the typical faculty load is 60 formula hours over a two-year period or 15 formula hours per semester. However, in order to meet department and/or scheduling needs, the regular load can vary between 60 to 62 formula hours.

At the end of the two-year load balancing period, formula hours greater than 60 (4.000 FTE) in the instructional mode, by an amount equivalent to or greater than .067 FTE or one formula hour, shall be paid as overload (Schedule B). If a faculty member is below the 60 formula hour limit by an amount equivalent to or greater than .067 FTE or one formula hour, the faculty member may, by mutual consent, make up the imbalance the following contract year. Otherwise, money is owned to the District and must be repaid.

How to determine load/extra contract?

Effective July 1, 2004: Load balancing is used when the regular assignment exceeds 15 formula hours. Any whole class assigned after the 15 formula hour assignment has been met is considered an overload class. For example:

Jane Doe has the following schedule:

  • Fall 2006: 16 formula hours (the extra 1-formula hour is part of the regular assignment, not a class by itself)
  • Spring 2006: 14 formula hours
  • Fall 2007: 18 formula hours (this includes a 2-formula hour overload class, but 1 hour over the fifteen is part of a ‘regular assignment’ class)
  • Spring 2007: 15 formula hours
What would you do in semesters 1-3 and semester 4 as far as load balancing?

Fall 2006 is one hour over fifteen; however, since this hour is part of the regular assignment and not a class by itself, no overload is given. The hour will ‘carry over’ to the next semester for load balancing.

If a faculty member teaches 17 or more formula hours as their regular assignment, it is preferred that the formula hours beyond 15 be carried over to the following semester for load balancing. However, the faculty member may be paid for those hours with dean and VPI approval.

Spring 2006 assignment is one hour below 15; this now equalizes the one-hour carryover from Fall 2006. For Fall 2007, either an overload TCS or Type C banking should be done for the 2-hour overload class; however, the 1 hour remaining (over fifteen) should be carried over to the next semester as load balancing. For Spring 2007, the person is at fifteen hours but has 1 hour carried over from the first three semesters. This person should be paid for one hour (.067 FTE-lecture) on a memo from the VPI to balance the 4-semester load balancing period. It is preferred that the memo be issued toward the end of the semester.

Example of load-balancing over the span of four semesters.
Example Semester Assigned Semester Load Cumulative Assigned Semester Load Standard Regular Semester Load Standard Regular Cumulative Semester Load Load Balancing – Overload Load Balancing – Overload
Semester 1 16 16 15 15 0 1
Semester 2 14 30 15 30 0 0
Semester 3 18 48 15 45 2 1
Semester 4 15 63 15 60 1 0

What is a formula hour?

A formula hour is defined as:

  • 18 catalog hours of lecture/discussion mode assigned in a semester
  • 24 catalog hours of lab/shop/clinic mode assigned in a semester

How do I calculate formula hours?

For lecture/discussion mode, the calculation is catalog hours divided by 18 equals formula hours. For lab/shop/clinic mode, the calculation is catalog hours divided by 18 multiplied by .75 equals formula hours.

If I taught only lecture classes, I’d have to teach 270 hours per semester to equal fifteen formula hours. If I taught only lab classes, I’d have to teach 360 hours per semester to equal fifteen formula hours.

How do I convert formula hours to FTE?

The attached sheet provides a formula hour to FTE conversion for both lecture and lab. It also includes conversions for different length classes. In the very first column, a ‘contract hour/week’ equals a 50-minute meeting a week.

Can I use load balancing to extend my sick leave (for example, maternity leave) or other type of leave to help minimize the amount of leave I must report/use?

No, load balancing is not intended to supplement the leaves offered faculty. Also, in the fourth semester, load balancing should be spread over the entire semester. 

How much overload can faculty be scheduled for?

A regular faculty assignment is approximately 15 formula hours; by mutual consent, extra service beyond this regular assignment is allowed. Preference for overload assignments is per the LRCFT contract Article 4.5. The amount of overload assignment should be reasonable and ensure academic quality. Deans may want to contract their Vice President of Instruction to determine a reasonable amount of overload. Overload should not exceed .600 FTE.