Dropping below full-time enrollment (12 credits for undergraduates; 8 credits for graduates) requires prior approval from International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) in the form of a Reduced Course Load (RCL). See 8 CFR § 214.2(f)(6)(iii). Students enrolled in thesis or dissertation hours can also be considered to be full-time students, with prior ISSS and academic approval. Students experiencing difficulty with English language proficiency or reading requirements will need to register for English as a Second Language coursework as needed to bolster language skill and remain full-time. ISSS reserves the final right to approve or deny any Reduced Course Load request. In some cases, ISSS may instead recommend a Leave of Absence, which would allow the student to withdraw from classes but also necessitates departure from the United States.

RCL Eligibility
RCL Application