3.16 Course Registration

A. Registering for Courses in MyPack Portal
B. Registration as Affected by an Unconditional Pass for a Final Exam and ETD Review
C. Course Load Requirements
D. Credit-only Courses
E. Adding Courses
F. Dropping Courses
G. Dropping Minicourses
H. Requirements for Auditing Courses
I. Retaking a Course
J. Taking Courses for Credit at Other Local Institutions

A. Registering for Courses in MyPack Portal

After consulting with their advisor, students may register through the online MyPack Portal using their valid UNITY ID and password. Registration is controlled by specific window access dates. Students cannot register before their window access is scheduled. Access will be denied if students attempt to register before the date indicated, but will be able to register any time after their specific window access opens. If an advisor has not yet been appointed, the student should check with their graduate program office.

The online Graduate Catalog is the most current description of NC State's graduate program requirements. Course descriptions also are available through the Registration and Records online Course Catalog.

Consent of the offering graduate program is required for all practicum and individual special topics or special problems courses as well as internships and thesis or dissertation research.

Course Numbering

  1. Graduate students should register for courses at the 500 through 800 level.
  2. Registration in 500-level courses is also open to advanced undergraduate students unless otherwise specified.
  3. Students must have graduate or PBS standing to register for 700- and 800-level courses.
  4. Depending on particular program requirements, a student may take 400-level courses for graduate credit provided that they are outside the student's major and the program is not at the doctoral level. However, no more than six (6) credit hours at the 400-level may apply toward master's degree requirements and no more than one course of up to four (4) credit hours may be used for a graduate certificate. No 400-level courses may be used toward a doctoral degree.
  5. Students may not count 900-leel courses toward a graduate degree program.

B. Registration as Affected by an Unconditional Pass of a Final Exam and an ETD Review
Students who receive an unconditional pass of a final exam and subsequently submit a draft PDF file to initiate the ETD review process will not be allowed to register in the same degree program in subsequent semesters. Students who were previously registered in that degree program at the time of initiation of the ETD review will have their registration canceled. Students who still have an active uncompleted degree program may continue to register in the uncompleted program.

C. Course Load Requirements

  • 1. Fall and Spring Semesters
  • Full-time graduate course load for fall and spring semesters is defined in Section 3.15 of this Handbook.
  • 2. Summer Sessions
  • Graduate students are not required to be registered in summer sessions. If they are full time in the previous spring semester and are continuing their graduate study in the following fall semester, they are considered to be full time in the summer. If a student needs to be registered, one credit hour is consider full time.
  • 3. International Students
  • The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) requires international students on F-1 and J-1 visas to carry a full-time course of study to remain in status. Full-time status may be achieved with a combination of course work and a research or teaching assistantship.
  • 4. Maximum Course Load
  • The maximum course load for graduate degree students is 15 credit hours in a semester and six credit hours in a summer session, for full-time students not holding assistantships. Graduate students who wish to enroll (register) for more than the maximum hours allowed must complete a Schedule Revision form including the signature of the Dean of the Graduate School. Schedule Revision Forms are available from the student's departmental office.
  • 5. Assistantship Course Load
  • Students appointed to assistantships should consider the number of credit hours for which they register in any given fall or spring semester in light of the duties expected of them as a result of the assistantship. Limits to the number of credits such students may register for in a semester may be imposed by individual advisers or by programs. In such cases, registration should be established in consultation with the student's adviser and/or DGP.

D. Credit-Only Courses
Courses at the 500 and 700 level are letter graded and cannot be taken for "credit only".

Graduate students who take 400-level courses that are letter graded do not have the option of taking the courses for "credit only" if they intend for the course to be part of their Plan of Graduate Work. It is appropriate for them to take selected 400-level letter-graded courses that are required by the program, but they cannot be included in the Plan of Graduate Work for Satisfactory-Unsatisfactory (S-U) grade. Examples would be 400-level courses in the student's major and FLE courses.

E. Adding Courses
Courses may be added during the first week of a semester, via MyPack Portalalone, or during the second week, via MyPack Portal and with permission of the instructor. In a summer session, courses may be added during the first two days via MyPack Portal alone, and/or during the third and fourth days via MyPack Portal with permission of the instructor. To add a student to a course after the deadline for adding courses, an instructor must submit a Schedule Revision Form to the School/College and then to the Graduate Dean for approval. Schedule Revision Forms are available from departmental offices.

F. Dropping Courses
All 500-800 level courses may be dropped through MyPack Portalwithout grades during the first eight weeks of a semester and during the first two weeks of a summer session. Students and advisors should consult the specific Registration and Records calendar for drop deadlines. Students should make schedule changes as early as possible in the semester. The number of hours for which a student is officially enrolled and upon which tuition and fees are based is that number in which the student is enrolled at the end of the second week of classes of a semester and at the end of the fifth day of a summer session (the last day to withdraw or drop a course with a refund).

A Schedule Revision Form is required to drop a course after the deadline. No dropping of courses shall be allowed except for documented medical reasons or other verified, unforeseen grounds of personal or family hardship. Making such exceptions to policy requires the recommendation of the chair of the student's advisory committee, the DGP or Department Head, and the Dean of the Graduate School. Courses may not be dropped after the final grades have been submitted by the instructor and processed by Registration and Records.

All drops processed after the authorized drop period must be handled in person at the Department of Registration and Records.

G. Dropping Minicourses
The drop date for a five-week minicourse is the last day of the third week of the mini-course. The drop date for a seven-week minicourse is the last day of the fourth week of the minicourse. Instructors teaching minicourses (courses which last only a portion of the semester) should announce at the outset of these courses their appropriate drop deadlines.

H. Requirements for Auditing Courses
Graduate students wishing to audit a course must have the approval of their advisor and of the department offering the course. While auditors receive no course credit, they are required to attend class regularly. The degree to which an auditor must participate in class beyond regular attendance is optional with the instructor. Any auditing requirements should be clearly explained in writing to the student at the beginning of the semester. Should an instructor conclude that an auditor has failed to fulfill the stipulated requirements, the instructor is justified in marking "NR" (no recognition given for an audit) on the final grade report.

With the single exception of foreign language audits, all audit registration must fall within the maximum permissible course loads. Students registered for the 695 and 895 research course in their particular field must carry hours of credit and cannot be audited. [Recommended by the Administrative Board of the Graduate School and approved by the Dean of the Graduate School on 1/25/90.]

Audits (AU) in subjects in which the graduate student has had no previous experience will be evaluated at full credit value in determining maximum semester course loads, but audits do not contribute towards fulfilling full-time registration since they carry zero credit hours. Audits taken as repetition of work previously accomplished are considered at one-half their credit value in calculating maximum semester course loads. While audit registrations are evaluated for purposes of determining permissible course loads in terms of the regulations of the Graduate School, the University Cashier's Office considers all audits, except one permitted free of charge, in terms of full credit value in calculating tuition.

Registration procedures for students wishing to audit a course and deadlines for changing from credit to "AU" status can be found on the Registration and Records website (see also Academic Calendar for deadline information). The Dean of the Graduate School may approve exceptions to the given deadlines only on the grounds established for exceptions to the course drop deadline.

I. Retaking a Course
It is possible for a student who has previously audited a course to retake the course for credit with the approval of their advisor. Courses taken in this manner will be considered the same as any other course taken for credit in meeting degree requirements. The Graduate School does not allow credit by examination.

Students registered for the 695 and 895 research course in their particular field must carry hours of credit and cannot be audited. [Recommended by the Administrative Board of the Graduate School and approved by the Dean of the Graduate School on 1/25/90.]

J. Taking Courses for Credit at Other Local Institutions

  • 1. Interinstitutional Registration Program
  • NC State participates in an Interinstitutional Registration program. Under this agreement, NC State graduate students are permitted to register for classes on one of the other campuses, upon recommendation of their advisory committees.
  • Even though taking a course on another campus, the student is exclusively under the administrative direction of the NC State Graduate School. Enrollment for courses on other campuses will take place on this campus, following guidelines from Registration and Records. Such courses are considered by the Graduate School to be a part of the student's normal load and the student will be billed for the courses through the NC State University Cashier's Office. During the summer, the procedure is somewhat different in that a student must be enrolled in a least one course on the NC State campus during the same session as the requested interinstitutional registration.
  • When the grading system of the other institutions varies from that of NC State, grades received under Interinstitutional Registration will be converted to the NC State system. For example, "H," "P," "L, and "F" grades earned at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and "E," "G," "S" and "F" grades earned at Duke University will be converted to "A," "B," "C" and "F" grades, respectively.
  • 2. Cooperating Raleigh Colleges
  • The Cooperating Raleigh Colleges (CRC) is a program organized for the purpose of developing and conducting cooperative educational activities among Raleigh colleges. Graduate programs are currently offered only at NC State and Meredith College, but graduate students may enroll at either institution for a course or courses not offered by their home campus. Registration and Records maintains CRC registration procedures.
  • Any NC State graduate degree student who is enrolled in at least three graduate credit hours on the NC State campus may take a course at Meredith College during fall or spring semester, provided that:

      • (a) the course is not taught on the NC State campus
      • (b) the advisory committee considers the course educationally desirable, and
      • (c) the student receives prior approval from the Graduate School.
  • NC State students may not register for more than a total of two courses in any semester at Meredith, and not more than six of the required academic credits for a master's degree at NC State may be accepted from that institution. Grades from Meredith are not used in computing a student's NC State grade point average.
  • Under this agreement, regular tuition and fees are paid to NC State. Special fees may be required for specific courses at Meredith, and the student is responsible for paying these fees.