Washington State Community College will be making the change from quarters to semesters to be more in sync with all of Ohio's colleges and universities.
The college's board of trustees voted unanimously Monday to change to a semester system beginning in the fall of 2012.
Preliminary planning will begin immediately, said college officials.
"This is going to be a large task with a lot of steps," said Chief Academic Officer Mark Nutter. "Every single course has to be re-designed and many will have to then be approved at the state level. Programs will have to be re-written-there are very few areas of the college this won't eventually touch."
The change is being made to comply with a strategic plan for higher education created by Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland and Chancellor Eric Fingerhut. The plan calls for all public colleges and universities in the state to use semesters to present a unified system to potential students.
Only about one-fourth of the colleges and universities in Ohio currently use the quarter system, said Nutter.
Ohio University and The Ohio State University have also made plans to go to a semester system in the fall of 2012.
With everyone using one system, students should have a much easier time transferring credits from one school to another, Nutter said.
"A lot of times students end up losing some credit going to from one to another because the courses don't match," he said. "There are a lot of good reasons to do this."
The overall goal of the strategic plan for higher education is to have 230,000 new college graduates in Ohio by 2017.
Community colleges have to play an important part in making that happen, said Washington State Community College President Charlotte Hatfield.
"The majority of those 230,000 students will be coming through a community college," she said.