Reduced Course Load Request

As an F-1 student you are required to take at least 12 credits each semester in order to maintain your status. However, if you find yourself in a situation where you need to take less than 12 credits, you will need to obtain prior authorization from an International Student Advisor to do so by submitting a Reduced Course Load request.

Be advised that there are very limited exceptions to the full course of study rule. The exceptions being illnesses or medical conditions and this being your last semester. However, even if one of these exceptions apply to you understand that you will still need to submit proof that substantiates your situation and you must have made continual progress toward your degree up to that point.

Below are instructions for submitting a Reduced Course Load request.

How to request a Reduced Course Load

  1. Pre-requisites

    You will need to first gather the required documentation substantiating your situation.

    • If you are graduating:

      • You will need to submit a copy of your graduation application

      • If you will be participating in the graduation ceremony, you will also need to submit proof that you have paid for the ceremony fee
    • If you are requesting a reduced course load due to medical reasons:

      • You must provide a detailed letter from a licensed medical doctor, doctor of osteopathy, or licensed clinical psychologist that specifically states the recommended course load for the current semester (or complete absence from school). This must be received and approved before dropping classes.

  2. Complete the online application

    Once you have gathered the required documentation log into your ISP . Complete the Reduced Course Load Request application.

    A couple of things to keep in mind:

    Please answer all items as accurately as possible, read instructions carefully and submit all the required documentation. Any incorrect information or documentation that is submitted without following the guidelines correctly will result in your application being delayed.

    Complete all items, if you do not complete all items your request will not be processed. If you have a question regarding an item please email us at

  3. Wait until we contact you

    Once you have submitted everything we will review your application. We will contact you if you are missing something. If not, please leave between 7-10  business days for use to process your application. Once your application has been processed we will contact you.