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Registration Policies

All students who enrolled in The Graduate School prior to fall 1994 should consult the bulletin of their year of matriculation for registration procedures and requirements.

Registration Requirements

All students must register each fall and spring semester for “continuation” and pay tuition each semester until all degree requirements are completed, unless waived by an approved leave of absence granted by the dean. Failure to maintain “continuation” registration each fall and spring will result in administrative withdrawal from the university.

Leave of Absence

Students who have been on leaves of absence and who intend to resume a degree program must give the department and the dean notice of this intention two months before registration.

Doctoral Students

In addition to “continuation,” doctoral students must also register for a total of six semesters of full-time tuition. For PhD students, approved transfer of an earned graduate degree may reduce the number of semesters of full-time tuition required for the degree to five semesters. After the six semesters of full-time tuition, doctoral students will be charged a reduced tuition. Specific course requirements for doctoral students are set by the departments. Students must be registered during the terms that they take qualifying, preliminary, and final examinations.

Master’s Students

Master’s students must register for a minimum of 30 units of degree credit, although some programs require more than 30 units. A registration fee and “continuation” registration for each semester are also required in all programs. Approved transfer course work into a master’s program will not reduce the minimum registration of 30 units for a master’s degree at Duke University. Students must be registered during the terms in which they take final examinations.

Registration Periods

All students who are enrolled in The Graduate School and who have not been granted a leave of absence by the Dean must register each fall and spring until all degree requirements are completed. New students will register immediately prior to the first day of classes in either term; continuing students register during the announced registration periods (set by the Registrar’s Office) in October and April.

Late Registration

All students are expected to register at the times specified by the university. A late registration fee of $25 is charged any student registering late, including a current student who delays registering until the registration for new students.

Change of Registration

The drop/add period begins each semester immediately following the last day of registration and extends through the first two weeks of the new semester. You may drop a course through ACES any time prior to the end of drop/add. You do not need an instructor’s permission.  If you drop a course during the drop/add period, it does not appear on your Duke transcript.

After the drop/add period ends, you can no longer drop a course, but you may be able to “withdraw” from a course by completing the paperwork to receive a grade of W in the course with the approval of your instructor, academic dean, and your Director of Graduate Studies.  You can withdraw from a course until the last day of classes of the current semester.

If you wish to enroll in a course on an audit basis, this must be done by the close of drop/add and may not be altered thereafter.

Summer Registration

Students who are in residence at Duke University during the spring and who plan to enroll for courses in the summer session may have their course programs approved by the director of graduate studies during the week of Graduate School registration in March. Summer session students may register at announced times beginning with the March registration period and up to the Wednesday preceding the start of the appropriate term. Graduate students who are in residence during the summer session, but not enrolled in any courses, pay only the “continuation” fee.

The university does not mail statements for summer session tuition and fees. All tuition and fees should be paid in the University Cashier’s Office (114 South Buchanan Boulevard, Bay 8, Room 103) at least five full working days prior to the first day of class. Students who fail to register and pay all tuition and fees before this deadline will be assessed a late charge. Failure to pay tuition and fees by the end of the drop/add period will result in administrative withdrawal of the student.

Summer session students may add a course or courses before or during the first three days of the term. Courses may also be dropped before and during the first three days, but a 20 percent tuition fee will be charged (1) if the course is not dropped before the first day, and (2) the dropped course(s) results in a total tuition reduction. Courses dropped after the third day of classes are not eligible for tuition refund.

Additional Registration Requirements

It is necessary to be a fully registered student in order to be eligible for a library carrel and laboratory space, student housing, university and some outside loans, and the Student Health Service, including accident and sickness insurance.