Skip to Main Content

Registration & Enrollment Policies

Registration and Enrollment Policies

Continuous-RegistrationContinuous Registration

In order to maintain continuity of enrollment, a matriculated student must register each fall and spring until the program of study is complete and the degree has been earned. A graduate student who plans to receive his/her graduate degree in the summer term (awarded in August) must register during the previous summer session in order to maintain continuous matriculation. 

If for any reason a student is not registered for a course (because of a leave of absence or because the thesis or dissertation has been successfully defended, but the final manuscript has not been submitted to the library), the student must register for CONT.6010 (Continued Matriculation) in order to maintain continuous registration. Since students are not allowed to register if they have outstanding financial obligations to the university, it will be necessary for them to clear their financial record in order to register for Continued Matriculation. 

Master's students may only register for two semesters of Continued Matriculation. Doctoral candidates may register for up to three semesters. Exceptions to the this rule may be granted with approval of the academic department (Graduate Coordinator/Department Chair) and college dean. Students completing a thesis or dissertation must also have the approval of their thesis/dissertation advisor. Exceptions must be requested via a Graduate Academic Petition. If an exception is not granted, the student will be withdrawn from the University and need to reapply. If a student reapplies and is readmitted, the rules regarding the Stature of Limitations restart.

Continued Matriculation does not entitle a student to any use of university facilities, services or resources, but only maintains an active record and provides for appropriate mailings. Students who are engaged in academic work necessary to complete their thesis or dissertation, participate in a required full time internship or curricular practical training, or otherwise engage in or make use of University facilities or other resources must register for a minimum of 1 credit. (Note: Specific internship/CPT requirements will vary by department and students may be required to register for 3, 6, or 9 credits depending upon their program of study.)

The rules regarding the Statute of Limitations for the completion of master's and doctoral degrees still apply to students registered for Continued Matriculation.

All international students on F-1 or J-1 visas must register as full-time students (9 credits) each semester until their degree requirements are completed. Any variance from this policy must be approved by the International Student and Scholars Office.

A student who fails to maintain continuous matriculation loses the status of a degree candidate and must reapply to the Graduate Admissions Office ( for readmission and for renewal of candidacy.

Dropping-Classes-and-Refund-PolicyDropping Classes and Refund Policy

Graduate students may drop courses during the first ten days of classes and receive a refund. No refund will be given after these time periods. To formally withdraw from a course during this period, or thereafter, the student must drop the course through SiS self service ( If the student fails to officially drop a course, he or she will remain enrolled and be required to pay for tuition and fees.  In addition, if the student does not drop a course and does not attend classes, he or she will receive an "F" on the official transcript.

Changes-in-RegistrationChanges in Registration 

Courses may be added or dropped through self-service in SiS ( Students who wish to add a course during the sixth through 10th day of classes will need a permission number from the instructor of the course. Permission numbers are not needed to drop a course. In addition, students may change from audit to credit or from credit to audit during this period. Courses dropped during the first 10 academic days will not appear on the student's permanent record. No new courses may be added and no course may be changed from audit to credit after the tenth academic day. Thereafter, a student wishing to drop courses must do so by the date indicated in the Graduate Academic Calendar  (

No refund of tuition and fees is allowed after the tenth day of the semester. The grades for courses dropped after the tenth day will appear as W on the student's record.  

Change of ProgramChange-of-Program

A graduate student wishing to change departments or transfer to a doctoral program upon completion of his or her master's degree must follow the steps listed below:

  1. No transfers will be considered until the student has been in the original department in which he or she was accepted for at least one semester.
  2. All sections of a new application sheet must be completed. 
  3. If so desired, the student may request that all test scores, letters of recommendation, etc., in his or her original file be used as part of his or her new application package.
  4. The student must specify on the application form when his or her master's degree will be completed and when he or she will actually begin doctoral studies (for students applying to a doctoral program).
  5. A check made payable to University of Massachusetts Lowell to cover the application fee must be included, or payment must be made by credit card when applying online.