Making Schedule Changes
Dropping and Adding Courses
Procedures for schedule changes vary by the time period of the semester. The effective date of a schedule change is the date on which the change is entered into the registration system.
Schedule change periods are as follows:
Period 1 ends the the fifth day of classes in the fall and spring semesters. Schedule changes during period 1 are free and do not require adviser signature. Instructor or departmental approval may be required for adds or section changes for some courses during Period 1. Course drops during this period do not count toward a student’s ISU drop limit and will not appear on a student’s permanent record. Schedule changes during period 1 may be processed through AccessPlus or presenting a Schedule Change/Restriction Waiver form to the Registrar’s Student Scheduling Office, 10 Alumni Hall.
Period 2 ends the Friday of week 10 in the fall and spring semesters. During this period, schedule changes require signatures of adviser and instructor and are processed on a Schedule Change/Restriction Waiver form. Completed forms are processed in 10 Alumni Hall. A schedule change fee is assessed for adds, drops, and section changes during this period. Course drops after period 1 count toward a student’s ISU drop limit and appear as an X on the permanent record. A section change does not require a drop.
Drops and other schedule changes that are judged to be beyond the student’s control may be processed as administrative actions if approved as such by the college dean. There is no schedule change fee for administrative schedule changes. Administrative drops do not count toward a student’s ISU drop limit or appear as an X on the permanent record. The effective date of an administrative action is the date approved by the College Student Services office and/or college dean of the student’s college.
Period 3 is anytime after period 2. Schedule changes during this period are permitted only for extenuating circumstances, may require a written statement of support from the instructor and the student, and must be approved by the College Student Services office and/or dean of the student’s college.
Half-semester courses and partial term courses: Specific deadlines for adding and dropping half-semester courses are published in the university calendar. Appropriate adjustments to add and drop deadlines are made for other partial term courses. To find out specific deadlines for partial term courses, go the ISU index under Tuition Adjustment Schedules, or contact the Registrar’s Student Scheduling Office, 10 Alumni Hall, 294-2331.
Undergraduate students have a limited number of courses they may drop during their academic careers. (These are drops processed after the fifth day of classes each semester.) Students who enter Iowa State as freshmen are allowed to drop a maximum of five courses during their undergraduate career. Students entering at a level above freshman classification or in the College of Veterinary Medicine are allowed to drop a maximum of four courses. Courses dropped during a student’s first semester do not count towards this limit, nor does the summer count as a first semester for this purpose. Students enrolling at Iowa State after receiving a bachelor’s degree will be allowed two drops.
Exceptions may be made for courses that must be dropped for reasons beyond the student’s control. These exceptions are granted only by the college student services office and/or dean.
The number of drops students have left is indicated on their grade report (available on AccessPlus) each term. Students are responsible for not exceeding their limit. Students who attempt to drop a course beyond the limit without special permission by the dean of the student's college will continue to be enrolled in the course and will receive a grade at the end of the term.