Academic Load / Excess Load Policy

Standard Load


The minimum number of semester credits required for "full-time" status is 12. Students may register for up to 18 credits per semester (17 credits for freshmen) without special permission and at no extra charge. Students who receive financial assistance must be careful that they do not drop below the 12 credit minimum. Less than full-time status may jeopardize eligibility requirements.

During summer session the maximum course load for all undergraduate students, without petitioning for special permission, is one credit per week.


The normal load for full-time students is 8-15 credits during a semester and 4-9 during summer session (but no more than one credit per week without the Director's permission).  You may exceed these maximums once during your graduation program if you:

  • are not on academic probation;
  • have successfully completed at least 16 graduation credits; and
  • have filed written approval from their adviser with the Graduate Studies Office.

If you take undergraduate courses, each three undergraduate credits will count as two graduate credits in calculating your load.  Graduate assistants must take at least eight credits and no more than twelve credits.

The unit of credit is the semester hour, which is given for the satisfactory completion of a subject pursued for one semester and having one class period or two laboratory periods per week.

Excess Load

Students must obtain the approval of their advisor and of the Dean of their college in order to register for an excess load. Any sophomore, junior, or senior who wants to enroll in more than 18 credits or any freshman that wants to enroll in more than 17 credits must file an application for excess load.

There is a per-credit charge for an excess load over 18 credits.