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University Add, Drop, and Withdrawal Policy


This policy applies to all students enrolled at Willamette University who seek to change their enrollment in one or more courses while remaining enrolled in at least one credit-bearing course at Willamette during that semester. Students seeking to drop or withdraw from all courses in a given semester (that is, those considering a Leave of Absence or exiting the University altogether) should consult Willamette’s Policy on Total Withdrawal, Leave, and Exiting the University.

Definitions related to this Policy:

Add: Adding refers to enrollment in a course on or after the first day of the semester. Adding a course to one’s schedule may be done to ensure a full-time schedule, to replace a dropped course, or to simply take additional coursework.

Drop: Dropping refers to the removal of a course from one’s schedule on or after the first day of the semester, but during the defined add/drop period. A student may wish to drop a course due to changed interest or plans or to reduce their course load for the semester.

Withdrawal: Withdrawal refers to the act of removing one or more courses from one’s schedule after the add/drop period for the given semester.

  • Once a student withdraws from a course, they receive a grade of W. No credit for this course will be granted toward a degree, and the W grade will not be computed in the grade point average.
  • Students who withdraw from a course for any reason will not receive academic credit for work completed in that semester of the course.
  • Students may re-enroll in the course in a subsequent semester. The grade earned in a subsequent semester will not remove the original W from their transcript.


  1. Add/Drop: Students may request to add or drop a course(s) from their schedule within the first 12 calendar days of the semester (note: for courses that only meet only once per week, a student may request to add/drop a course by 5:00 p.m. the day after the second meeting of the course). Consult the Registrar’s Office webpage for instructions on how to add/drop a course.
    1. Students are encouraged to drop an unwanted course(s) from their schedule as quickly as possible to allow other students to enroll before the add/drop deadline.
    2. Some programs may require that students obtain instructor and/or advisor approval prior to adding or dropping a course. Consult the instructor and/or the Registrar’s Office for more information.
    3. Students enrolled in off-semester programs (such as Pacific Northwest College of Arts low-residency programs and the College of Law’s summer/intersession programs) should consult those schools for program-specific deadlines.
  2. Withdrawal: A student wishing to remove one or more courses from their schedule after the add/drop deadline—but who seek to remain enrolled in at least one credit-bearing course at Willamette during that semester—may do so up until the withdrawal deadline through the University’s course registration system. Students wishing to withdraw after the published deadline may only do so by following the Emergency Circumstances procedures, below.

    Note: Withdrawal Deadlines vary by college. Please consult the University Academic Calendar for information regarding Withdrawal Deadlines.

    Students seeking to drop or withdraw from all courses in a given semester (that is, those considering a Leave of Absence or exiting the University altogether) should consult Willamette’s Policy on Total Withdrawal, Leave, and Exiting the University.
  3. Emergency Circumstances: In exceptional circumstances (such as medical, mental health, personal, or family emergencies), a student may petition to withdraw from one or more courses after a college’s published Withdrawal Deadline. Such petitions are strictly evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
    1. Students seeking to withdraw after the Withdrawal Deadline must submit a petition to request this exception. Students should contact the Registrar’s Office for this petition form.
    2. After a Withdrawal petition is filed—and until a decision is communicated back to the student by the Registrar’s Office—the student should continue to attend all courses as though the petition has been denied.
    3. In all cases involving Withdrawal petitions, the student will be notified as soon as possible after a decision has been made, and notification will be e-mailed to the student’s account. If the petition is approved, the appropriate campus officials will be notified of the result (e.g., Instructors of affected courses, Student Accounts Office, Financial Aid Office, and the Registrar’s Office).
  4. Implications of Add, Drop, and Withdrawal:
    1. Adding credit(s) beyond a full-time courseload may result in additional tuition charges. Students should consult the Student Accounts Office prior to adding credits.
    2. Dropping or withdrawing from one or more courses may result in a student falling below “full-time” status, which may have implications for financial aid eligibility, academic status, and/or timely progress to degree completion. This may also be the case in the event of multiple individual course withdrawals over the course of a student’s tenure at Willamette. Students should consult the Registrar's Office with questions about their academic status, Financial Aid regarding questions about their aid status, and Student Accounts with questions regarding their account status.
    3. A student who fails to withdraw officially but ceases to attend or participate in a course will be assessed according to course standards, which may include a grade of F being assigned for the course.
Effective Date: August 01, 2023
Last Review Date: N/A
Next Anticipated Review: August 01, 2025
Responsible Person/Primary Contact: Provost
Responsible University Office: Academic Affairs
Willamette University

Office of the Registrar

Waller Hall, First Floor
Willamette University
900 State Street
Salem Oregon 97301 U.S.A.
M-F, 8am-5pm (summer hours: M-F, 8am-4:30pm)