Graduate School

Registration, Enrollment, and Full-Time Status

Table of Contents:

Registration and Enrollment

Graduate students are required to register at Michigan Tech each academic-year semester (fall and spring) from the time that they enter a graduate program until the time they receive their degree. See the Continuous Enrollment section for more information

  • Students must complete their initial registration and enroll prior to the billing due date (posted on the Academic Calendar; typically the Wednesday before classes start).
  • Students who fail to enroll prior to that date will be charged a fee and may have their course schedule dropped.
  • Refer to your student bill for deadlines.
  • For specific enrollment rules for students in candidacy, please refer to our page about candidacy.

How does a student 'confirm enrollment'?

There is a difference between registration and enrollment. The process of signing up for courses is called registering. Students are charged tuition and fees when they register. Students are enrolled after they pay the tuition and fees. Even students who do not owe money must confirm their enrollment by the deadline. For more information refer to this page from billing services. It is each student's personal responsibility to properly register and enroll for courses.

Need help registering?

Refer to the registrar's registration page for more information.

Full-Time Status

Full-time status is defined as:

  • Nine (9) credits during the academic year (fall/spring).
    • Five to eight (5-8) credits is considered half-time.
  • During the summer, one (1) course OR
    • One (1) credit of research if the student is not in candidacy OR
    • Three (3) credits of research if the student is in candidacy.

Who needs full-time status?

Graduate students supported (with full or partial support) by teaching, research, administrative assistantships, or fellowships, must be registered as full-time students during each semester (including summer) for which they receive support.

Students enrolling in fewer than the full-time number of credits may be at risk of losing their financial assistance or visa. Any international student who is considering enrolling for less than nine credits should consult International Programs and Services (IPS) to ensure that their visa status will not be jeopardized.

Can a student be considered full-time at less than 9 credits?

A graduate student taking fewer than nine credits during an academic-year semester is considered full-time at Michigan Tech in the following instances:

  • The student is enrolled in a course that carries full-time status regardless of the number of credits, e.g., co-op (UN5000).
  • The student is dual-enrolled at Michigan Tech and an affiliated university and the student’s total credit load equals or exceeds nine credits.
    • An affiliated university is one with whom Michigan Tech has a formal written agreement for exchange and/or dual enrollment of students. Enrollment at the affiliated university must be documented to the Graduate School by the student’s home department at Michigan Tech.
  • Students who have successfully defended in a given semester are considered full-time at less than 9 credits for up to 2 semesters after the defense semester.
    • The two semesters after the successful defense includes summer, even if the student chooses not to enroll in summer.
    • For example, if a student successfully defended in spring, they would be considered full-time at less than 9 credits for the following summer and fall semesters.

What is the maximum credit load?

A graduate student may enroll in up to 13 credits. If a student wishes to enroll in more than 13 credits, approval must be obtained from the graduate program director, chair of the department, or dean of the college. See the overload request form from the registrar.

Continuous Enrollment

Having begun a graduate program, students must be enrolled every academic-year semester (fall and spring) until they complete their degree.

  • "Completing" a degree means successfully completing all required courses, turning in all paperwork, and, if required by the degree program, defending and turning in a final version of a report, thesis or dissertation.
    • for example: students who defend their dissertation, thesis, or report, but fail to submit a final version or fail to complete any paperwork, must be enrolled each fall and spring semester until their degree is completed.

What about summer?

Graduate students are not required to register for summer session in order to fulfill the continuous enrollment policy. However, graduate students are required to enroll during the summer in the following cases:

  • Students who are defending a dissertation, thesis, or report.
  • Students who are supported during the summer.
  • Students who are using University facilities (other than the library)
    • Access to the Library will be maintained during the summer session if students are registered in the previous spring and subsequent fall semester.
    • Contact the Graduate School with questions about whether or not a student's current status entitles the student to Library access.
  • Students who are completing their degree must be enrolled for a minimum of one full credit.
    • This includes submission of the dissertation, thesis, or report, and/or final paperwork.

If a student fails to continuously enroll, the student will be considered inactive. Refer to the Readmission section of this page for more information.

Continuous Enrollment Courses—for special circumstances

Students who find themselves in situations that make it impossible for them to register and enroll in regularly scheduled courses, including research or special topics courses, may be eligible to register and enroll in one of the following continuous enrollment courses:

UN5951: Graduate Continuous Enrollment—Special Circumstances

  • 0.0 credits (no fee)
  • Requires Graduate School permission to register.
  • Meets continuous enrollment requirement for graduate students needing "time out" for special circumstances (such as active military duty), for online programs with inactive terms, and for dissertation, thesis, or report submissions during the grace period.
  • Students enrolled in UN5951 do not have access to advisor's time or campus facilities but do have e-mail and library privileges.

UN5953: Graduate Continuous Enrollment

  • 1.0 credit.
  • Requires department permission to register.
  • Course can be used to meet the minimum one credit enrollment requirement for graduate students. Students enrolled in research-oriented degree programs must instead register in one credit of research with the appropriate faculty member. Not available to students who need to be enrolled full-time with 9 credits.
  • Students enrolled in UN5953 maintain access to campus facilities, e-mail, and the library. Late enrollment after the billing date carries the standard late fee; no waivers granted.

Students who will be working with their advisors must enroll in one credit of research (3 credits if in candidacy) instead of UN5953 so the advisor gets credit for the course.

What is the readmission procedure?

Any graduate student who has been dismissed or who has officially withdrawn from Michigan Tech (by submitting a withdrawal form to the Registrar's Office) must submit a new application for admission. This application will be reviewed and considered along with all other applications.

Students returning after failing to maintain continuous enrollment must apply for and be granted readmission. They must also pay a readmission fee equivalent to the cost of having maintained continuous enrollment (through enrollment in UN5953) for each non-summer session during which the student was inactive.

Readmission is not automatic. Students who apply for and are denied readmission will be not be allowed to continue in their graduate program.