Course Changes & the Petition Process

It is imperative that students and faculty adhere to the deadlines set by the college. Students may do the following without petitioning by the deadlines:

  1. Add
  2. Drop
  3. Withdraw
  4. Audit
  5. Change to Pass/No Pass
  6. Elect an Independent Study
  7. Request an Incomplete Grade
  8. Time Overlap

Students wishing to take one of the above actions should fill out the Registrar's Course Change Form, or, for incomplete grade requests, an Incomplete Form before the deadline.

These deadlines apply to everyone equally, but sometimes situations happen beyond a student’s control and a student needs to petition after the deadline.

A student should first read the complete Academic Petition Policy (PDF) before petitioning one of the above actions after the deadline. The petition process is initiated by the students. Students should submit their petition request here.  Petitions will be reviewed and may be granted. If approved, they will be submitted to the Registrar's office for processing.

Because all petitions are not granted, students should be sure to do their best to comply with posted deadlines, as petitions are to be used only as a last resort for situations beyond the students’ control.


Here is information on the different options/processes for courses:

Add/Drop Deadlines for Courses

Students may add or drop any full semester course using the online registration system (“myGoucher”) during the open add/drop period, which ends on the fifth business day of the semester. Between the fifth and tenth business days of the semester, students may add or drop courses by submitting a course change form to the Office of the Registrar, but may add a course only with the permission of the instructor. (Permission to add a course during this period is granted at the instructor’s discretion and is not automatic, as joining a class late can put a student at a significant disadvantage.) Students may not add a full semester course after the tenth business day.

A 7-week course may be added through the first 3 days of the 7-week term without instructor permission. On days 4 and 5 of the 7-week term the instructor must give permission for the student to add the course. To add a course after day 5 of the 7-week term the student will need to petition for a late add with the approval of the instructor and the associate provost for undergraduate studies. A student may drop a 7-week course through the end of the 5th day of the 7-week term.

See the Important Dates for Students (PDF) for actual dates each term.

Withdrawals from Courses

A student may drop a semester course without a withdrawal appearing on the transcript until the tenth day of the semester. If a student withdraws from a class after this time, the student will receive a grade of W. The last day to withdraw from a semester course with a W is the last day of class. A W does not affect a student´s GPA but it does affect student´s credit completion towards graduation. A W is still a grade so students continue to be full-time students and the course still counts towards tuition charges.

The last day to drop a 7-week course is the end of the 15th day of the 7-week term.

Students should consult the Important Dates for Students (PDF) for exact dates.


A full-time student may audit one or more courses a semester without additional charge. Election of the audit option must be done at the point of registration for the course or within the add/drop deadline for adding a course. Permission to audit must be obtained in writing from the instructor of each course. Successful completion of audits will result in an AU on the transcript. There will be no notation on the transcript in the case of unsuccessful completion or withdrawal from an audited course. Students may withdraw from an audit through the last day of classes. College policy prohibits changing an audit to credit or vice versa after the add/drop deadline. Faculty may request a student's withdrawal from an audit if the audit requirements were not met.

Pass/No Pass

Students may choose to take only two courses per academic year on a pass/no pass basis. In the regular semester and in 7-week courses, the pass/no pass option must be submitted to the Registrar's Office by the last day of classes. Pass is equivalent to any grade from A through C- as normally interpreted at Goucher College. A grade of P or NP will have no effect on a student's grade point average. Students who wish to switch from pass/no pass to graded status may do so up until the last day of classes. After that the choice is irrevocable.

BSEP courses and summer courses taken elsewhere are not ordinarily open to pass/no pass election. Department Chairs may specify that an off-campus experience can be taken only on a pass/no pass basis; such a requirement is not part of the student's pass/no pass quota. Courses elected with a pass/no pass option will not count toward requirements in the major or minor (unless such courses are required to be so graded). If a major requirement is taken pass/no pass the department must require that the course be re-taken for a regular grade or identify an appropriate substitute. Courses taken for a pass/no pass grade do not count as “graded credits” for Dean’s list purposes.