Reduced Course Load Requests

Students wishing to enroll in fewer than 12 credit hours, must secure permission in writing from the Dean of Undergraduates before registering for courses. In the absence of extenuating circumstances necessitating a reduced course load, such permission will not generally be granted.

To request permission, send a request to indicating:

  • the list of courses you wish to take,

  • the total credit hours this represents,

  • a clearly outlined plan indicating how this reduced load will not delay graduation,

  • and the specific reasons for making the request.

Consult with your major advisor(s) or the Office of Academic Advising prior to submitting your petition to address potential effects on your academic plan. Students also should be aware that the Office of the Registrar must report a student’s part-time status to various entities, such as loan agencies, scholarship foundations, insurance companies, etc. It is in the student’s best interest to determine if they will be affected in any way by part-time status.

If you fall into any of the following categories, special considerations may apply if you wish to enroll in less than twelve hours. Consult the appropriate office about your eligibility and potential ramifications prior to submitting your request.

  • Varsity Athletics – consult Academic Advising for Athletics

  • International Students on non-immigrant visas (F) – consult the Office of International Students and Scholars

  • Financial Aid – consult the Office of Financial Aid

  • Music Students – consult Gary Smith (, Associate Dean of the Shepherd School of Music

In order to be charged the per credit hour rate plus a part-time registration fee, students must have approval and make the necessary edits to their course load in Esther within the first two weeks of the semester. There are no refunds for part-time enrollment for students whose course load drops below 12 hours after the first two weeks of the semester. For additional information, refer to the General Announcements.