As an F-1 Student you are required to maintain a full course of study and make satisfactory progress toward your degree. This means being enrolled for at least the minimum hours required to be considered a full-time student, and remain in good standing with the university.
I. Full-time Enrollment
1. What does full-time enrollment mean?
As an F-1 International Student you must be enrolled as a full-time student during each regular semester (Spring and Fall). You must remain enrolled for the entire term.
| ||Semester Hours Requiredo be Full-Time|
12 hours for the entire term
9 hours for the entire term
*NOTE: Only ONE on-line/distance learning course (3 credit hours) per semester may be counted toward full-time enrollment. Please see an ADSO/DSO if you have any questions.
SEVIS requires GSW to report the number of hours an international student is enrolled each semester.
2. Do I have to be enrolled during Summer semester?
No. F-1 Students are not required by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration to be enrolled in school during the summer provided the student is eligible and intends to register for the next term. EXCEPTION: New students who enroll during the summer semester must be registered as a full-time student.
3. Is it possible to drop below full-time?
You must consult with your DSO BEFORE dropping (or withdrawing) any courses. A student who drops below a full course of study without PRIOR approval of a DSO will be considered out-of-status. In special circumstances, a student may be authorized to reduce his/her course load based on the specific exceptions to the enrollment requirement outlined by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
- These exceptions include:
- Student is in his/her final term and is enrolled for the number of credit hours needed to complete the program of study.
- Student has medical conditions. A medical professional must describe illness and amount of time needed to recover on the request form. Such authorization must be completed each semester and may not exceed an aggregate of 12 months while pursing a course of study.
- Student is concurrently enrolled part-time at another institution and is carrying the difference of credit hours at that institution. (Proof of Enrollment from the other university must be attached.)
A student may be authorized to drop below a full-course of study on ONE occasion per degree level. A Request to Drop Below Full-Time Status form may be obtained from an ADSO/DSO. The student is responsible for acquiring the proper signatures and documentation required by the form and returning the completed form to his/her ADSO/DSO by the given deadline. Incomplete requests will not be considered for approval.
In general, requests to drop below a full-course of study will only be approved prior to midterm. Please see your ADSO/DSO if you have any questions.
II. Normal Progress
It is imperative for an F-1 Student to make normal progress toward the completion of his/her degree. This is done by satisfactorily completing the courses required by his/her chosen major within the program dates listed on the I-20. Attending class and completing assignments are essential to adequately completing a course. Failing a class or failing to enroll as a full time student may cause a student to be unable to complete his/her degree within the time period outlined on the I-20.
Students who fail to maintain a full course of study are considered out-of-status and ineligible to work on campus, to transfer schools or to apply for off-campus employment. Being less than fulltime is considered a violation of immigration law and will make you ineligible to apply for permanent resident status; it may also result in a personal interview with Atlanta Immigration officials and/or deportation.
1. What does “Good Standing” refer to?
A student is placed in Good Standing if his/her cumulative/institution GPA is equal to or above the Required Minimum GPA for the total number of hours the student has earned.
|Total Hours Earned|
(including hours accepted in transfer)
Cumulative/Institution G.P.A. /td>
|61 and above||2.00|
*See the Georgia Southwestern State University Bulletin for more information regarding Academic Status.
***Any student not in Good Standing is considered Out-of-Status.***