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Student Course Enrollment, All Students

Type: Enrollment
Effective Date: 8/28/2023

Policy Summary

The university determines policies and practices related to students adding and dropping coursework from their schedule.  

Reason For This Policy

The policy is set forth to provide deadlines and expectations for students to add and drop coursework.

Entities Affected By This Policy

  • All colleges and instructional units
  • Office of the Dean of Students
  • Office of the Registrar
  • University Advising
  • Student Affairs
  • Enrollment Management

Who Should Know This Policy

  • All colleges and instructional units
  • Office of the Dean of Students
  • Office of the Registrar
  • University Advising
  • Student Affairs
  • Enrollment Management


Enrollment: The action of either adding or removing course(s) which may be completed by the student or the university with the student’s consent.

Adding a course: The action that results in a student registering for a course. 

Drop: The action resulting in a student’s registration being removed from a single course.  Depending on the date of the drop a “W” may or may not be placed on the transcript.

Withdrawal: A grade that is annotated by removing course registration in a timeframe that retains a record of the course enrollment.

Term/Session Withdrawal: Withdrawing from a given term (Fall, Winter, Spring, or Summer) at Northern Arizona University means reducing your course load to zero credit units for that term. It does not necessarily involve withdrawing entirely from Northern Arizona University. In most cases, if you withdraw from one term, you are still eligible to enroll for the next term.

Administrative Drop: The process in which an instructor drops a student from a course who is not participating in class by the Administrative Deadline.  All institutions receiving federal aid are required to remove students from courses that they are not attending and return Financial Aid to the Department of Education.


The enrollment deadlines are based on a 16-week session of instruction. All session lengths based on alternative timeframes have proportionally equivalent deadlines.  Below are the deadline-specific types of enrollment classifications:

  • Administrative Drop:  The deadline is determined by the Office of the Provost and is prior to the last day to Add.   
  • Last day to Add:  The deadline is determined by the Office of the Provost and is after the Administrative Drop deadline.
  • Last day to Drop a course without a grade of “W”:  Through the 8th business day of the term/session.
  • Single Course Withdrawal Timeframe: A student may drop course(s) and receive a “W” on their transcript between the 9th business day through the Friday before Finals.  

After the first-class meeting day, with Provost approval, some academic units/departments may require students to obtain permission to add a course, even if there are seats available.

Personalized Learning Program

If a Personalized Learning student has neither completed nor dropped a newly enrolled course by the end of their subscription, the course will automatically be assigned an Incomplete and be subject to the Personalized Learning Incomplete Policy - Undergraduate, or the Personalized Learning Incomplete Policy - Graduate.

The program determines its deadlines by calendar day for each student, specific to their subscription.   

  • First day of subscription: Day 1
  • Last day to drop from a subscription and get a refund: Day 10
  • Last day to drop an individual course or an entire subscription: Day 110


Office of the Registrar: Maintain the processes related to add and drop processes, record relevant annotations on the transcript, and assign enrollment appointments.

NAU Faculty and Staff: Understand and explain the policy relative to your role.

Students: Make decisions to add and drop course(s) within the given deadlines and inquire with the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid to determine the impacts of dropping a course on aid that was awarded.


Students are required to follow university procedures, deadlines, and course requisites to enroll in a course.  Students self-elect to add or drop courses and/or withdraw themselves from a term/semester at Northern Arizona University within the appropriate deadline posted by the Office of the Registrar. In most cases, students will be self-enrolling in coursework within the student information system (LOUIE).  In some cases, a student may opt into a program or process in which the university completes enrollment processes.

Upon a student self-enrolling or being enrolled by the university, students are responsible for paying tuition to the university within the posted deadlines and following payment procedures as outlined by Student and Departmental Account Services. If a student has not participated in a course but also has not dropped the course through LOUIE or the Office of the Registrar, a grade of a “F” will be awarded.  If a student does not add or drop their courses within the provided deadlines a student may petition to add or drop a course which may or may not be approved.

Override Authorization is permitted by the instructor and department permitting students to enroll on an exception basis.  For example, when a course is “full” an instructor may permit a student to enroll placing the class over the enrollment limit.

Standard Term/Semester-Based Procedures

All adds, drops, and swaps completed within the designated deadlines posted by the Office of the Registrar may be completed in LOUIE.

Personalized Learning Subscription Procedures

In the Personalized Learning Program, the expectation is that students enroll in their courses using their student dashboard to start a new subscription.

  1. Initiate the withdrawal through the PL dashboard by selecting the subscription dates for the withdrawal.
  2. By confirming the dates for withdrawal on the dashboard, a link will appear to the Registrar’s “Withdrawal from Term” form.
  3. Complete the “Subscription Withdrawal and/or Change of Withdrawal Date Petition” form found on the Registrar's Forms site.  
  4. The date you withdraw will determine if a grade of a “W” will be entered for all courses.

Forms or Tools

Administrative Drop
Registrar Forms (to find petitions)
Important Dates and Deadlines

Related policies:

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