Full-time/Part-time Status: Undergraduate Students

  • Responsible Executive: Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs
  • Responsible Offices: Office of the Provost
  • Version: 1.0

Policy Statement

Student enrollment status as full-time or part-time is evaluated each term and determined by the number credits taken in a given term.

  • Students admitted into a full-time program of study will be initially classified as full-time. Student status is determined by their subsequent student enrollment status.
  • Students admitted into a part-time program of study will be initially classified as part-time. Student status is determined by their subsequent student enrollment status.
  • Undergraduate students enrolled in a full-time program of study are required to maintain at least 12 credits per term. In some exceptional cases, students may carry less credits but still be considered officially a full-time student (see Policy Impacts / FAQs below).
  • Those students enrolled as part-time are required to carry less than 12 credits per term.

Students departing from their program status may incur changes to financial aid, billing, and/or registration.

In order to change undergraduate enrollment status, students are required to declare their intent by completing a Change of Curriculum and Status form with their academic advisor and obtaining approval.

The student should consult with his or her academic advisor to determine if the change sought is allowable. The signatures of the student’s academic advisor, co-op coordinator (if enrolled in a co-op program) as well as that of a financial aid representative are required to enact this change.

There are some students for which status and status changes are governed by other policies. For instance:

  • Drexel University employees may not register for a full-time course load while employees of the University.
  • International students must comply with full-time registration requirements established by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS formally INS). International students on F-1 or J-1 student visas are strongly encouraged to meet with their International Students and Scholars Services (ISSS) advisor before making any decision to change their status change.

Process to Enact a Change of Status

There are many other policies and federal regulations governing a student’s decision to change his or her status. In particular, Financial Aid, Cooperative Education and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (for international students) policies and regulations should be considered when making a decision to change status as there are potential ramifications associated with falling below full-time status. Where relevant we have linked students to the appropriate policy to inform their final decision regarding drop and withdrawal. We encourage students to seek out their academic advisors, Drexel Central and co-op coordinators when making any such decision.

A student may declare their intent to change his or her status by filing a Change of Curriculum and Status form with his or her academic advisor. By completing this form, the student is signifying that he or she will ascribe to the credit limits associated with the new status, and accept the changes in financial aid and billing that are incurred as an outcome of the status change.

The Change of Curriculum and Status form must be filed no later than the end of the adjustment period for the term in which the change is sought. That being said, it is recommended that the student indicate a change in status from either full-time to part-time or vice versa before the onset of his or her registration period for the next term in order to provide the advisor the information needed for sound academic planning.

Those students that fail to change their status during the specified time period will be billed according to their official status designation. Adjustments to the bill will be made at the end of the registration period to reflect students’ enrollment status at that point in time; students’ accounts will be reassessed throughout the adjustment period to accurately reflect their registration and account status.

Policy Impacts and FAQs

Students That Fall Below Full-time Status

In the event that a full-time student falls below the 12 credit minimum, he or she will be notified by the advisor after the adjustment period for that term to discuss the impact of such and confirm status as full-time or change status to part-time for the subsequent term. If one does not change his or her full-time intent as prescribed by the above policy he or she will be billed at the full-time rate for the subsequent term, consistent with the official designation indicated in the student record.

Senior Year Exception – Students entering into the senior year must file for degree by August 1st of their Senior Year. Full-time senior level students in the last term of their program of study will be allowed to fall below the 12 credit minimum. Even though they will be considered to have full-time status for all academic and institutional purposes, these students will be billed on a per credit basis and reported to the National Student Clearinghouse as less than Full-time for all enrollment reporting purposes.

Change due to withdrawal from courses

In the event that a student’s schedule changes from full-time to part-time as a consequence of the withdrawal process, the student will not need to file a Change in Curriculum or Status form as he or she is still considered to be working within the guidelines established by the program of study and official status designation. That is, a full-time student who falls below 12 credits because of a course withdrawal has attempted 12 credits and will maintain his or her status as full time. Such a student will have completed less than his or her attempted credits and will be encouraged to discuss the ramifications of completing less than the attempted credits with his or her academic advisor and Drexel Central.

Change due to dropping a course

In the event that a full-time student drops a course during the adjustment period, it is expected that he or she will add courses to maintain a full-time schedule, i.e., at least 12 credits. Throughout the adjustment period the academic advisor will review the registration status of his or her students to ensure that the standards of status designation are met. If during the adjustment period, a full-time student falls below the full-time credit minimum of 12 credits and was not able to meet this standard, students’ charges will be reassessed automatically and the bill will be adjusted. However, if in the subsequent term the student is again below 12 credits at the close of the registration period, he or she will be notified to confirm status with his or her academic advisor.

Change due to addition of course(s)

In the event that a part-time student enrolls in 12 credits or more during the adjustment period, he or she will be charged as a full time student. However, if in the subsequent term the student again exceeds 12 credits or more he or she will be asked to confirm status with the academic advisor.

Purpose of Rationale

The assignment of full-time or part-time student enrollment status governs billing, financial aid, and participation in the co-operative education experience and successful progress in an academic program. This policy provides students with definitions and considerations related to undergraduate enrollment status and refers to other policies that may constrain changes of enrollment status and documentation requirements.