Federal Immigration Regulations require F-1 and J-1 students to maintain full-time normative enrollment and make the progress needed to complete their studies by the end date listed on the immigration document. Students who are not enrolled full time by the end of the add/drop period violate their international student statusOGS is committed to working closely with departments, students, and the Registrar to make sure all students enroll in a full courseload each term.

Please contact your programs dedicated IS Advisor if you know students have a hold on their registration, if they are working on adding into a class, if they are struggling with financial issues that make registration impossible, or if they have personal issues and are asking to take less than a full-time courseload.

Please note the following: 

  • Audited classes do not count towards the calculation of full-time status; 
  • Pass-fail classes count towards the calculation of full-time status; 
  • Online/hybrid courses have special restrictions. F-1 students may enroll in only one, 3-credit online/hybrid course per semester to count toward the normative, full-time courseload. J-1 students may not count any online/hybrid courses toward full-time enrollment and must receive OGS approval to enroll in any online/hybrid courses. 
The U.S. Government requires undergraduate students to take a minimum of 12 credits each semester, fall and spring. We realize that to complete their studies within 4 years, Georgetown undergrads will be required to take additional credits during the semester or over the summer. We rely heavily on undergraduate deans and academic advisors to guide these students and monitor their progress toward degree.


For graduate students, the full-time enrollment requirement depends on the program’s structure and the normative credit progression on file with the Graduate School. For example, the M.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology is a two semester program requiring 15 credits per term. In contrast, the M.A. in Arab studies is a two-year program, requiring only 9 credits each semester. Doctoral students who have been admitted to candidacy are full time at zero credits as long as they are enrolled in dissertation research.


Students enrolled in non-degree/credit bearing programs must take the courseload associate with the level of education. For example: post-bac and pre-med students are required to take 12 credits per term. Students enrolled in non-degree/non-credit programs must undertake a minimum requirement of 18 classroom or clock hours of instruction.


Please contact an IS Advisor with any questions or concerns regarding full-time enrollment requirements.