Six Drop Course Policy

Effective Fall 2007, the six-drop policy limits each student to dropping no more than six courses throughout their undergraduate college career at Texas public institutions of higher education. Under section 51.907 of the Texas Education Code, “an institution of higher education may not permit a student to drop more than six courses, including any course a transfer student has dropped at another Texas public institution of higher education.”

Any course a student drops after the posted census date is counted toward the six-course limit unless specifically identified as being exempt. This includes student and faculty initiated drops and courses dropped while enrolled at other Texas public institutions. This policy does not apply to courses dropped prior to census day or to complete withdrawal from all courses for the semester.

You may drop the first two courses during your academic career without penalty. Once you drop a third course, a registration hold will automatically be placed on your records. In order to have the hold removed, you will need to schedule a meeting with your academic advisor. No further holds will be placed on your record unless you drop another course. Each subsequent drop will cause a registration hold to be placed on your record and will require you to meet with your advisor to have it lifted. Your advisor will explain the implications of approaching the six-drop course limit and advise you on course choices accordingly.

If you drop a sixth course, your academic advisor, prior to lifting the hold, will inform you that no further holds will be processed by the Registrar. Should you attempt to drop a seventh class, your request will be denied by the Registrar and the drop not processed due to exceeding the six-drop limit. As a result, you will have to accept a grade in all courses in which you are enrolled and should plan your schedule accordingly.

What is a course drop?
A course drop (which will be recorded on your transcript) is an affected credit course not completed by an undergraduate student who is enrolled in the course at the census date* and will receive a non-punitive grade of W.

*The census date varies according to the length of the course. The most common of these are listed below:

Length of course Census date
2.5 weeks 1st class day
5 weeks 3rd class day
16 weeks 12th class day

To verify the census date for all other course lengths, please contact the University Registrar.

Exemptions and Exclusions
Any students who was enrolled at a Texas public institution prior to the Fall 2007 semester is exempt from this legislation. Students who elected to use the provisions of Academic Fresh Start and who have coursework prior to the Fall 2007 semester are also exempt. Students who have completed a baccalaureate degree at any recognized public or private institution are not considered affected students whether or not taking additional undergraduate courses.

Drops from the following types of courses are excluded from the course drop limit:

  1. Courses taken by students while enrolled in high school - whether for dual credit, early college credit, or for college credit alone.
  2. Courses dropped at private or out-of-state institutions.
  3. Remedial or developmental courses, workforce education courses, or other courses that would not generate academic credit that could be applied to a degree.
  4. Courses not eligible for formula funding.
  5. Courses taken as required co-requisites such as a lecture class with a required laboratory are counted as one drop whether or not identified as separate courses or as separate sections of a course.
  6. Courses which meet the definition of complete withdrawal.

Students may petition to drop more than the 6-course limit, or to drop a course and not have the drop count against the 6-course limit. These petitions will be reviewed by Provost's Office.

The following circumstances* will be considered:

  1. A severe illness or other debilitating condition that affects the student's ability to satisfactorily complete the course.
  2. The student's responsibility to provide the care of a sick, injured, or needy person such that providing the care affects the student's ability to satisfactorily complete the course.
  3. The death of a person considered to be a member of the student's family or someone who is otherwise considered to have a sufficiently close relationship to the student.
  4. The student's active duty service as a member of the military or of a person considered to be a member of the student's family or someone who is otherwise considered to a have a sufficiently close relationship to the student.
  5. A change of the student's work schedule that is beyond the control of the student and that affects the student's ability to satisfactorily complete the course.
  6. Other good causes as determined by the Office of the Provost.

* Please note that documentation must be provided in support of any of the circumstances noted above.

The following circumstances will not be considered valid reasons for requesting an exception to the 6-course drop limit:

  1. An attempt to avoid scholastic probation.
  2. Failing a course.
  3. Possibility of receiving a grade that will lower the grade point average.

Please note that this policy may vary from other institutions. For more information on this policy, contact the Registrar's Office.