There are some instances in which a student may take below the minimum required hours.
Students in their last semester of coursework are allowed to take less than a full course of study, but they are required to take at least 1 credit hour. If only 1 class is required for graduation, it cannot be an online class. If their last semester is summer, they must still be registered in at least 1 credit hour.
Students who choose this option and do not graduate will be terminated at the end of the semester for failing to enroll in a full course of study. Therefore students are advised to choose this option only after careful consultation with their academic advisor and an immigration advisor.
Illness or Medical Condition
Students must get written permission from a medical doctor stating their medical condition is severe enough that they cannot enroll in a full course of study. The nature of the illness does not have to be revealed, however the Office of International Student Services has to approve this request before a student can drop their classes. This reason cannot be used more than an aggregate of 12 months during the program study.
In rare circumstances a student facing exceptional academic difficulty might be allowed to drop below the required number of credit hours; however, this is allowed only during the first semester of study, and it must be approved by the Office of International Student Services. Students who are approved for this request must be registered in at least 6 credit hours throughout the semester (including summer if required to be registered in the summer).