6.10. Academic Load

6.10.1. Full-time Academic Load (All Semesters)

To be certified as full-time students, individuals must have active registration for a minimum of 12 semester hours during a semester (including all sessions within the semester). However, a course load of 32 semester hours per academic year (TU) or 30 semester hours per academic year (ADP) is required in order to complete an undergraduate degree program in four years, assuming one does not take classes during the summer semester.

A student who is enrolled in less than a full-time course of study may be in jeopardy of the following:

  • Losing insurance coverage under his/her/their parent/guardian’s insurance policy;
  • Not being allowed to live in University residence halls
  • Being placed on a loan repayment schedule by a lender or guarantor if the student is the recipient of federal financial aid; and/or
  • Losing a scholarship if the guidelines for receiving the scholarship require full-time enrollment. All Oglethorpe merit-based financial aid require the student be full-time (see Sec. 5.6.)

6.10.2. Half-time Academic Load (All Semesters)

Half-time enrollment is active registration for at least 6 hours but less than 12 hours during a semester (including all sessions within the semester).

6.10.3. Overload (All Semesters)

Students are normally permitted to register only for as many as 19 semester hours each semester (including all sessions within the semester). A student whose academic load exceeds 19 attempted semester hours must obtain overload permission. Such overloads may be allowed for students with sophomore standing and a minimum grade-point average of 2.7. A request form is available online. The form requires approval by the student’s advisor and the associate provost. No overload will be approved if the request would result in more than 23 semester hours attempted. All students will be charged additional amounts for attempting more than 19 semester hours in a given semester (including all sessions within the semester).

6.10.4. “No Show” Grades and Their Impact on Academic Load

Instructors are required to inform the University whether a student was present in class during certain weeks of class for each session. If a student is reported during this period as having never attended any of his/her/their courses for a session, the University will administratively withdraw the student. If one or more instructors indicate a student never attended their course, but at least one instructor does indicate attendance, the student will be assigned a grade of “NS” (No Show) in the courses he/she/they was reported as having never attended. The credit hours for each of those courses will still be billed to the student’s account, the credit hours will be considered part of the student’s academic load during the semester, and those credits will be counted as attempted hours for financial aid purposes. The “NS” grade is not calculated in a student’s grade-point average.

6.10.5. Special Rules for International Students

Oglethorpe University enrolls students without regard to their immigration status. The University is authorized by the Department of Homeland Security to issue the form I-20 to admitted students to apply for an F-1 student visa and enroll full-time in a prescribed course of study. Students studying at Oglethorpe University on a temporary visa may consult with an international student advisor in Global Education. F-1 student visa holders are expected to consult with the International Student Advisor/Designated School Official (DSO) regularly to seek guidance and ensure compliance with the conditions of the visa. International students with F-1 student visa status are required to complete a full-time course load, currently defined as 12 hours, each fall and spring semester. Additionally, F-1 student visa status international students enrolling for the first time in summer school must carry 6 semester hours to be considered full-time for immigration purposes. An international student holding an F-1 student visa is in violation of the conditions of the visa if enrolled in less than a full-time course of study. Changes to full-time registration should not be made without prior consultation with the DSO/International Student Advisor. Students who fail to comply with the conditions of their visa face consequences outlined in immigration regulations, which can be avoided when the student, academic advising, faculty, and the international student advisor engage in regular communication.