University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
College of ACES
ACES Academic Programs
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Adding and Dropping Courses

Adding Courses

When can I add a course to my schedule?

You can add a full-semester course at any time after the time shown on your time ticket and before the end of the second week of classes (see the University's Academic Deadlines for specific dates). You may not add a course that will make your credit load greater than 18 hours (an overload) without permission of your advisor and the Office of Academic Programs. The overload request form can be accessed here.

Any time you add a course after the first day of class, it's wise to contact the instructor to get permission to add the course and to find out about any assignments, textbook recommendations, changes in meeting time or place, and the like.

How do I add a course after the first two weeks of classes?

To add a course after the deadline, you need permission of the instructor, the department offering the course and your academic advisor. Pick up a Late Course Change Form from the college in the ACES Academic Programs office or download a PDF version and take it to the instructor, the department, and your advisor. Don't assume any permissions will be automatic -- be prepared to give good reasons for wanting to add late.

Dropping Courses

When can I drop a course from my schedule?

You can drop a course any time until the midpoint of the term in which the course is offered. See Academic Deadlines for specific dates, unless:

  • The drop would cause you to carry fewer than 12 hours.
  • You are trying to drop your last course - i.e., dropping to zero hours for the semester.
  • You are a freshman (fewer than 30 hours completed) and the course you want to drop is a required introductory course, such as math, chemistry, Comp. I (RHET or CMN), ACES 101, or the introductory course in your major.

In each of these cases, you must see your academic advisor before you try to drop the course. In all cases, it is wise to see your advisor before dropping any course.

Before you drop a course, talk with your academic advisor about your reasons for dropping it and the implications the drop will have for your progress toward your degree. If it's a required course in your program, be sure you'll be able to take it again before you plan to graduate. Also be aware that dropping to fewer than 12 hours will cause you to be classified as a part-time student (underload), which may have implications for your eligibility for financial aid, insurance, and scholarships.

How do I drop a course after the eight-week deadline?

First, talk to an assistant dean in ACES Academic Programs and your academic advisor about why you want to drop the course after the deadline. If you then decide to ask to drop the class, download the Petition to Drop a Course After the Deadline form or pick up a copy from the ACES Academic Programs office in 128 Mumford Hall. Write a narrative explaining your reasons for requesting the drop, have your instructor complete and sign the estimated grade report, and have your advisor sign the petition. Then take the signed petition to the Academic Programs office. An assistant dean will review the petition and notify you of the decision within seven to ten business days. You must continue to attend class and complete assignments in the course until you receive permission to drop the course from the dean's office.

Permission to drop after the deadline will be granted only in cases of documented extenuating circumstances.

Will I get a refund?

Depending on your other enrollment and the timing, you might be eligible for some refund of tuition and fees. Questions about refunds should be directed to the Office of the Registrar, 217-333-6565.

Why won't the registration system let me drop my last course?

The Student Self-Service registration system treats dropping your schedule to zero hours the same as withdrawing from the university, even if all you're trying to do is remove one course to make room for another in your schedule. If you're in the process of building your schedule, simply add another course before you drop the first one; this will then enable you to drop the first course and add its replacement.

However, if you're dropping your last course and not planning to complete the semester, you must visit the ACES Office of Academic Programs to complete the process of withdrawing from the university. Staff there will inform you of procedures you'll need to follow to re-enroll for a later semester.