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Dropping a Graduate Course or Withdrawing from all Courses

On November 16, the Provost emailed all students announcing that the deadline to withdraw from a course has been extended to November 30 to provide students who have been profoundly impacted by the pandemic conditions with more flexibility.  In considering your options, it is important that graduate students and program advisors understand the potential implications of withdrawing from a course (or an entire semester) so they can work together to make an informed decision.

When you register for a course, a seat is taken. Dropping after the end of the schedule adjustment period means that someone on the waiting list was unable to take the course. For this reason, the cost of a dropped course is charged to the student. If you received tuition remission as a result of a graduate assistantship or a tuition award in addition to your fellowship, you may incur tuition charges if you drop a course or withdraw from all courses. 

Withdrawl from all courses

Unless you are granted a leave of absence, withdrawal from all classes will result in termination of admission and withdrawal from the University. 

Graduate Assistantships

  • The assistantship stipend ceases.
  • Assistantship benefits (health, tuition remission) terminate.
  • The tuition remission will charge back to the student’s account and the student will be responsible for the cost of courses taken according to the Office of the Registrar schedule attached below.

Fellowships

  • The fellowship stipend may be rescinded.
  • Any associated tuition award will be revoked and the student will be responsible for the cost of courses taken according to the Office of the Registrar schedule linked below.

Dropping a Course

The key consideration is whether full-time status is retained after the course is dropped.

Graduate Assistantships

  • Graduate Assistants must retain full-time status during the period of the assistantship. See here for the requirements for full-time status.
  • When receiving assistantship tuition remission, dropping a course may result in a charge to the student’s account for the percentage of the refund not covered.

Fellowships

  • If the fellowship requires full-time status (48 units), dropping a course may result in the fellowship being rescinded.
  • When receiving an associated tuition award, dropping a course may result in a charge to the student’s account for the percentage of the refund not covered.

Graduate Students – Refund Schedule for Drops

Graduate students may obtain refunds for courses that are dropped during the Schedule Adjustment Period. Students may drop and add courses without penalty provided that the changes are made on the same day and that the total number of credits does not change. Graduate students are charged by the credit hour. A percentage charge and/or complete charge will be imposed according to the schedule below:

  • Prior to the first day of classes: 100% refund. There will be no charge for courses dropped prior to this date.
  • During the Schedule Adjustment Period: 80% refund. There will be a 20% charge imposed for courses dropped during this period.
  • Any time after the Schedule Adjustment Period: 0% refund. There will be no refund; students incur the full charge for courses dropped during this period.

For related questions, please first consult the program’s Director/Coordinator of Graduate Studies (DGS/CGS) and then, if necessary, University Human Resources Benefits (for assistantships), or The Graduate School (for fellowships).

REFUND SCHEDULE

Dropping courses or withdrawing may impact your financial aid eligibility.  Visit the Office of the Registrar’s page of academic deadlines for dropping a course or withdrawing from all courses.  For related questions about refunds, contact the Office of Student Financial Aid.

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