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Six-Course Drop Frequently Asked Questions

  What students are affected by this legislation?

Students who enroll as entering freshmen or first-time in college students in undergraduate courses offered through an affected institution of higher education for the first time during the fall 2007 semester or any subsequent semester are subject to the course drop limit restrictions. Transfer students who first enrolled at a Texas public institution during the fall 2007 semester or any subsequent semester are considered first-time in college and are affected by the six-course drop limit.

  What does “first-time in college” mean?

Transfer students who first enrolled at a Texas public institution during the fall 2007 semester or subsequent semester are considered first time in college and are affected by the six-course drop limit.

  Are any students exempt from this legislation?

Students who enrolled at a Texas public institution before the fall 2007 semester are exempt from this legislation. Students who elect to use the provisions of Academic Fresh Start who have coursework prior to the fall 2007 semester are grandfathered and are not subject to TEC 51.907. Students who have completed a bachelor’s degree at any recognized public or private institution are not considered affected students.

  What is considered a course drop under this legislation?

A course drop, which will be recorded on the student’s transcript, is defined as an affected credit course not completed by an undergraduate student who:

  • Is enrolled in the course at the official date of record*
    AND
  • Will receive a non-punitive grade of W or QW

*Date of record varies according to the length of the course. The most common course lengths are listed below. For the date of record for all other course lengths, please contact the Registrar’s Office.

Course Drop Record
Course Length Date of Record
Three-week course Second class day
Five- or six-week course Fourth class day
Eight-week course Sixth class day
16-week course 12th class day

  How can students keep from dropping so many classes?

When determining their class schedule for a term, students need to choose carefully the courses they plan to take. When deciding on the proper course load for a term, students should take into consideration outside factors that may affect their performance, such as work schedules and/or extracurricular activities.

  What happens if I completely withdraw from the university?

Complete withdrawals are not subject to the six-drop legislation and do not count toward the limit.

  Are there any situations when a course drop would not apply to the limit?

Yes. Some courses are excluded from the legislation. For example, developmental courses or courses that are required co-requisites are excluded.

  Are there any situations when a course drop can be exempt from the limit?

Some drops may be eligible for exemption for particular situations, such as severe illness, responsibility for the care of a sick family member, death of a family member or a call to active duty military. See the Legislative policy for more information.

  Why is there a hold on my record?

The Registrar’s Office has placed information on the holds screen in RamPort that identifies whether a student is subject to the six-drop limit. Holds that identify the student as exempt are informational only and will not block registration, transcripts, grades or graduation.

Students who are subject to the six-drop limit have a hold placed on their record that identifies the total number of drops remaining. These holds are informational and will not block registration, transcripts, grades or graduation – until only two drops remain. At this point, students will need to contact the Registrar’s Office for assistance.

  What is the purpose of this legislation? Does the state lose money when students drop classes?

The State of Texas awards higher education institutions funding based on the total number of credit hours that students are taking at the institution. When a student drops a course for which the institution has already received funding, the state loses the investment it has made to the institution for that student in that course. In other words, the state will award funding again for the second attempt by the student for the same course. So in a sense, the state has lost money by having to award funding to the institution for the repeated attempt by the student.

The state has partially addressed this loss in funding by restricting the funding awards to the institution for a course that a student has attempted three or more times. Although the state will not award funding, the state has allowed institutions to charge additional fees for students who attempt the same course three or more times.

By restricting the total number of drops students can have in their academic careers, the state will save funding dollars that would have otherwise been spent on multiple attempts of the same course.