Graduate Student Registration

Procedures and dates pertaining to registration are provided by the Office of the University Registrar.  Additional questions concerning graduate registration procedures should be referred to the Office of Graduate Studies, 1100 Seaton Hall, 402-472-2875.

Doctoral students who have advanced to candidacy status must be registered every fall and spring semester until they graduate. Failure to maintain registration may result in the termination of the student’s program.

Formerly enrolled graduate students who have not attended classes for three consecutive terms must request a reactivation of their eligibility to register for classes by emailing

Auditing a Course

Auditing gives a currently enrolled student (or currently admitted student) the privilege of attending class, but credit is not earned and a grade of AU is assigned when auditing a class.

All persons wishing to audit a course must be admitted and eligible to enroll in classes for the term in which they audit. The fee for auditing a course is the same as the regular resident or non-resident tuition for the term, and both UPFF and other course fees apply to the class.

To audit a course:

  1. Register for the class online.
  2. Pick up a Permit to Audit Card at the Office of the University Registrar, 107 Canfield Administration Building.
  3. Obtain the instructor’s permission to audit the course by having him or her sign the Permit to Audit Card.
  4. Turn in the signed Permit to Audit Card at the Office of the University Registrar, 107 Canfield Administration Building, no later than the last day to add a class for the term. 

Correction of Registration Errors

A graduate student who has registered in error (for example, enrollment in the undergraduate level of a 400/800 course) should correct the error through the normal drop and add process during the term in which the error occurred. In the event the error is not recognized until a grade is posted, the student may appeal for correction of registration within sixty days of the posting of the grade report in the Office of the University Registrar. Changes to a student registration record will not be made more than sixty days after grades are posted.

Drop and Add

Students may drop or add classes from the beginning of priority registration through the last day on which classes may be added for a term. Dates are published each semester in the Schedule of Classes. Students who do not initially register for classes until after the beginning of the term will be charged a late registration fee. No course may be added to a student’s record after the end of the add period (as published in the Schedule of Classes) without the permission of the instructor and the Office of Graduate Studies.

A course drop becomes effective for tuition and grade purposes on the date the transaction is processed by the student. Tuition liability for a course begins after the add period for a term.

A graduate student may drop a course without the instructor’s permission 3/4 of the way through the course. Any graduate student wishing to drop one or more classes after the 3/4 point of the term can do so only with the permission of the Office of Graduate Studies. The Dean of Graduate Studies will consult with the course instructor prior to approval. All courses dropped after the second week of the term are noted on the student’s academic record (transcript) with a “W” (withdrawn) grade designation.

For complete procedures, dates and regulations, refer to the current semester’s Academic Calendar.

Employment and Registration

Graduate students holding any fellowship(s) are required to be enrolled as a full-time student as defined in the Graduate Studies Bulletin. Students with external or departmental fellowships must follow the specific granting agency requirements.

Graduate students holding a traineeship are required to be enrolled full-time or be full-time certified during the tenure of their traineeship. Other remunerative employment must follow the granting agency requirements.

A student who holds a graduate assistantship may not work more than half time, or 19.6 hours per week, all jobs considered, including assistantship(s) and paid internships. Internships are considered work in a training environment related to the student’s educational career for which they receive pay. Therefore, an assistantship and an internship may not be held by a student simultaneously if the total hours between the two equal more than 19.6 hours per week. This applies to fall and spring terms only.

Graduate students who are not employed, or graduate research assistants who are performing duties that are 100 percent thesis related, may register for a maximum of 15 credit hours during an academic year semester, 6 credit hours during one five-week summer session, 9 credit hours during one eight-week summer session, or 3 credit hours during the pre-session.

Graduate students who are employed are advised not to exceed the following registration guidelines established by the Graduate Council.

Hours Employed per weekMaximum Registration Guidelines (credit hours)
Academic Year Semester 8-week Summer Session 5-week Summer Session *3-week Summer Pre-session
0 15 9 6 3
8-16 12 8 5 2
17-20 10 6 4 2
Full-time 6 4 3 1
*One course permitted for a maximum of 3 credit hours.

These guidelines reflect the fact that graduate-level course work serves mainly as a guide for independent, scholarly study. Graduate students are expected to master subjects and to devote substantial time in independent library and laboratory investigation beyond minimum credit hour requirements.

For courses offered within a summer session, a general guideline is a maximum registration of 1 credit hour per week of instruction.

Financial Aid and Registration

Registration Requirements for Financial Aid
Academic Year Full-time (F) 9 or more cr hrs
3/4-time (T) 6-8 cr hrs
1/2-time (H) 4-5 cr hrs
Summer Full-time (F) 8 or more cr hrs
3/4-time (T) 6-7 cr hrs
1/2-time (H) 4-5 cr hrs

Minimum registration required for financial aid during the summer is 4 credit hours of enrollment. These credits can be taken in different summer sessions; however, financial aid is disbursed during the session the student reaches half-time enrollment.

Full/Part-time Status and Registration

Registration Requirements for Full/Part-time Status

DurationStatusCredit Hours
Academic Year Full-time (F) 9 cr hrs
3/4-time (T) 6-8 cr hrs
1/2-time (H) 4-5 cr hrs
Less than 1/2-time (L) 1-3 cr hrs
Summer Full-time (F) 6 cr hrs
3/4-time (T) 4-5 cr hrs
1/2-time (H) 3 cr hrs
Less than 1/2-time (L) 1-2 cr hrs

Full-Time Certification

Graduate students are considered full time when registered for 9 credit hours during an academic semester or at least 6 credit hours during the summer, whether or not the student holds a graduate assistantship.

Students in a thesis-option masters degree program (Option I) or doctoral student in candidacy, may request to be full-time certified each semester they are under enrolled for the time limit allowed for their degree.  

To be eligible for the full-time certification, the student must be currently registered for at least one credit hour and have been registered at least half time (i.e., at least 4 credits) in the fall and spring terms prior to the initiation of the full-time certification status. Masters students may utilize the full-time certification not longer than 12 months; doctoral candidates may utilize the full-time certification not longer than 24 months.

Summer Registration

Graduate assistants are not required to register for courses during the summer term. Graduate assistants employed in the summer but who are not registered for 4 credit hours during the summer term are subject to FICA and Medicare taxes. Registration is required for recreation center usage and on-line libraries.  Enrollment of 6 or more credit hours will allow access to the health center without being charged a usage fee.  Any student may use the health center if under 6 credit hours or if not registered, but will be charged a one-time fee to access services (for any term fall, spring or summer).

Tuition and Fees

Tuition and fee rates are subject to change at the direction of the Board of Regents. For the current tuition and fees charges in effect, refer to Student Accounts.

Tuition and Fees for Graduate Assistants

  • Students holding a benefits-eligible graduate assistantship may receive tuition remission of up to 12 hours per semester during the fall and/or spring semesters plus a portion of the student's health insurance premium.
  • Payment of the student's portion of the health insurance premium, University program and facilities fees, library fees, technology fees, registration fees, special course fees, are the student's responsibility.
  • If a graduate assistant resigns or terminates the assistantship during the semester before four full months of service, all benefits will be lost. The student then is responsible for the total tuition payment and health insurance premiums.


Students who elect to withdraw from the University within the first four weeks of a semester, or within the first two weeks of a summer session, may be entitled to a fractional refund of tuition. The conditions of eligibility for refunds are subject to change. The current conditions are described on the University Registrar’s web site on the academic calendar.

Residency Status for Tuition Purposes

Regulations pertaining to resident status for tuition purposes are established by the Board of Regents. Initial determination of resident status is made at the time of admission and is noted on the Certificate of Admission. If a non-resident student wishes to change status, it is necessary to file an application with the Office of Graduate Studies, 1100 Seaton Hall. Requirements for resident status are included with the Application for Residency Classification for Tuition Purposes (PDF).

University Staff Exemption

Members of the academic-administrative, managerial-professional, and office-service staffs employed full time are eligible for the Employee and Dependent Scholarship Program. They can register for 15 credit hours each academic year (August through July). Participants are required to be fully admitted and to pay $1 per credit hour plus technology fees.  Part-time, temporary staff members and those employed only for the summer session must pay regular fees.


If a student wishes to drop all courses being taken in the term, this is considered a withdrawal. Withdrawals may be accomplished through the MyRED system. Students may withdraw from classes, regardless of circumstance, from the first day of classes through the 3/4-point of the term. Withdrawals that occur after the second week (or 2/16th) of the term but before the 3/4-point will be noted by automatic entry of a “W” grade for all uncompleted courses.

Any withdraw from classes after the 3/4 point of the term must be for extraordinary circumstances and will be granted only by petition through the Office of Graduate Studies. The following documentation is needed:

  1. A written request from the student within 60 days of the end of the term.
  2. Written permission from the instructor.
  3. Documentation for illness, death in the family or abrupt change in work schedule.

The result of a successful petition will be posting of a grade of “W” on the transcript for the respective course(s). If the petition is denied the grade submitted by the instructor will be posted to the transcript.

If after the census date or the last day to add classes in each term the student decides to drop a course or courses and/or withdraw from the University, it is highly recommended that the student contact the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid to discuss the implication the action may have on future eligibility to receive financial assistance.

If the student is on an assistantship, the student should contact the department Graduate Chair to discuss the ramifications of the withdrawal before actually withdrawing from the course work.

For complete procedures, dates and regulations refer to the current semester’s Academic Calendar.