Student Announcements

Start of Meeting the Regulations for 50% Onsite Hours Attendance

Memo to           : AGSB Community
Memo from      : (sgd.) Jowett Cecilio F. Magsaysay, MBA, PhD
Date                   : 08 March 2024
Subject              :  Start of Meeting the Regulations for 50% Onsite Hours Attendance
Memo No. AGSB-ACAD-2324-029

This memo follows through on the memo dated February 2, 2024, which set the start of the implementation of the percent onsite hours policy and procedures to:

  • Fourth term of Regis, which will start on April 29, 2024
  • Third trimester for Standard, MM, and MBA-H, which will start on May 27, 2024

This affirms that we will be following these scheduled starts.

We are sending out this memo before the pre-registration survey. If you will be registering for the coming Term 4 of Regis, you would need to ensure that you can meet the onsite attendance requirements, which are described below.

The responses to the questionnaire enabled us to build on our FAQs. The updated version follows.

Updated FAQs from Students on Onsite Required Hours for MBA 

This list of FAQs has been developed based on initial questions from students regarding the onsite hours required by government regulations. This document aims to clarify the requirements and to answer these frequently asked questions. This pertains to the MBA program. For students in the ME and MESEDEV programs, we will issue a separate list of FAQs.

Our objective is to meet the regulations, while also allowing some flexibility for students to schedule their class attendance.

There will be a special case for students who are overseas or in remote areas in the Philippines, as both groups may not be able to go onsite, and we would offer you a different path to graduation. This is explained in number 10 below.

1. What is the CHED regulation on onsite hours?

Quoting the relevant paragraph from “MEMORANDUM FROM THE OFFICE OF THE REGIONAL DIRECTOR No.: 38 series 2023” which is dated July 23, 2023:

“For private HEls, which have invested their own financial resources for facilities, resources, and training of faculty members for flexible learning, they may deliver 50% of the total number of courses per degree program through appropriate offsite, online, or self-paced flexible learning provisions. The remaining 50% must be conducted onsite.”

In our interpretation in the Ateneo De Manila University, we have simplified the calculation to: “50% of a course must be conducted onsite.”

Note that the counting of 50% of onsite hours refers to the offering of a course, not the minimum attendance of a student. The minimum attendance will take into account allowable absences, which is covered in number 5 below.

2. What does “onsite” mean?

The term “onsite” means that the student(s) and a professor must be in the same physical space where the learning is conducted. For AGSB, that physical space would primarily be in any of our campuses. In some cases, it could also be any designated space where we might schedule a learning session, as has happened before in a hotel function room, for example.

3. What would be the typical mix of learning modes for each course?

Each course would typically be a mix of:

  • Asynchronous online
  • Synchronous online, that is, Zoom sessions
  • Synchronous onsite, in Flex mode, where some students are onsite and some are online

There will be a few variations from this mix, for example, some courses are purely synchronous, meaning, alternating between Zoom sessions and onsite sessions in Flex. What they will have in common is that the synchronous onsite sessions comprise at least 50% of total learning hours.

At the course level, you will get a detailed view of the schedule for the synchronous sessions, both online and onsite/Flex.

4. Why are the onsite sessions in Flex mode?

The reason for this is to give the students the flexibility to not miss a session though they might not be able to come to the campus, and the choice to attend sessions to make up 50% when a professor offers more onsite sessions than required.

5. Is there a minimum attendance requirement for onsite?

Yes. The norm would be 80% of total onsite hours. That would mean maximum allowable absences from onsite classes would be 20%.

Typically, a student would be allowed to be physically absent from 2 onsite sessions for Standard, Middle Managers, and MBA-H and 1 onsite session for Regis.

These onsite sessions would be offered in Flex mode, as explained above, to give students the chance not to miss the topics to be discussed, even if they are not able to come onsite.

6. What If a student would not meet the minimum hours for onsite attendance for a course?

In that case, the student would not fulfill the requirements for completing that course. Please plan ahead and ensure that you can meet the onsite attendance requirement.

7. How many hours would an onsite session be?

Pre-pandemic, a synchronous session would be 3 hours for Standard, MM, and MBA-H, and 4 hours for Regis. As there was no online learning available, these sessions were all onsite.

During the lockdown periods of the pandemic, the synchronous sessions, all online only, were cut in half: 1.5 hours for Standard, MM, and MBA-H, and 2 hours for Regis. The principle we followed then was that online sessions needed to be shorter than onsite sessions to follow the advice on reducing continuous online exposure.

When we start implementing the new schedules to meet the CHED regulations, the onsite sessions would go back to 3 hours for Standard, MM, and MBA-H, and 4 hours for Regis. They would be scheduled every other week. This would be a better payoff for traveling time to and from a campus, and to reduce the number of such trips.

Note that there could be variations of this configuration, when agreed upon at the course level, e.g. 2 hours onsite weekly every week or another configuration – as long as the professor and students agree, and a room is available. But regardless of configuration, we should never go below the mandated 50% onsite hours.

8. What would be the time slots of the onsite classes?

For Standard, MM: Weekdays 6:00-9:00 for each session; Saturdays first session 8:30 am-11:30 am, second session 12:00 pm-3:00 pm, third session 3:30 pm-6:30 pm; Sundays first session 8:30 am-11:30 am, second session 12:00 pm-3:00 pm.

Regis: Weekdays 6:00-10:00 for each session; Saturdays first session 8:00 am-12:00 pm, second session 1:00 pm-5:00 pm; Sundays first session 8:00 am-12:00 pm, second session 1:00 pm-5:00 pm

MBA-H: Saturdays first session 9:00 am-12:00 pm, second session 1:00 am-4:00 pm.

9. My home campus is a Satellite Campus. Would I be able to attend onsite classes?

Yes, for those whose home campus is any of the four Satellite Campuses: Clark, Sta. Rosa, Iloilo, or Cebu, we are opening these campuses, and the learning modes would be similar to those in use in Rockwell. Please ensure that you declare your home campus for the coming term.

10. I am based overseas or in an area in the Philippines remote from any AGSB campus. What are my options?

For students who started online and who are remotely located – either overseas or in the Philippines but in a location that would not be accessible to any AGSB campus – you will not be able to continue right away with your program if you cannot meet the onsite hours requirements.

However, we would offer a path to finishing your program, which would be in the form on an Online MBA-branded program.

We are preparing this Online MBA program. This would be a new program that would need to be approved by CHED, as CHED categorizes this program as distance education, with its own requirements that a school would need to comply with. As this must go through an approval process, the earliest the online-only programs would start would be in SY 2025-2026. We will continue to update this timeline.

We will be extending the residency period for these students so that you have more chances to continue in the future and graduate.

11. Will there be an option to continue in an online-only mode?

No, there will be no such option in the coming Term and Trimester. As mentioned in number 10 above, that path would be through an Online MBA which will not yet be offered this school year.

12. What are the next steps?

Please answer the pre-registration survey. As always, it will not guarantee the slot you choose, but it will give us more data to plan and prepare.


Finally, allow me to express my gratitude to the students who took the time to answer the questionnaire, as 403 students did, and to our student leaders for helping to communicate to and from the student body.

Your response to the questionnaire helped greatly to gather the data to inform this policy. I also appreciate the overall positive response and willingness to adapt to the changes, as shown by an overwhelming majority of students. For those who are overseas or located remotely, I appreciate your expression of determination to finish your degree when we are enabled to offer you a path to completion.

God bless us all as we navigate our way through this time of change.