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Registering, Dropping or Withdrawing From Courses

Registering, Dropping or Withdrawing From Courses

Schedule changes are effective at the time they are processed.


On-Time Registration

NOVA has an On-Time Registration Policy: All students must register prior to the start of their course. Registration in SIS ends at 11:59 p.m. the day before a session begins. Students who register after that day and time must go to a campus in person to sign up for a course that has open seats and has not started yet. Once students register, they have until 5:00 p.m. the next business day to pay for the course. Students cannot register for a class that already started and cannot add/swap a class once it has begun. Any schedule adjustment needed after a course has begun requires permission from the academic dean.


Dropping a Course

Students may drop a course and receive a refund up until the last day to drop with a tuition refund (census date) as noted on the academic calendar. Students who change their mind about taking a course must drop the course and process the drop online through NOVAConnect. Otherwise, the student will be charged for the course and may receive a failing grade.


Cancellation of a Section or Course by the College

The College may cancel a course or section for any reason. Students enrolled in a canceled course or section will receive a tuition refund unless they transfer to another course. The number of credits for the replacement course will determine whether a student owes the College additional tuition or is entitled to an adjusted refund.


Administrative Deletion

Students who enroll in a course are expected to attend every class. Students who do not attend at least one class meeting or participate in an online learning class by the last day to drop with a tuition refund (census date) will be administratively deleted from the class. This means that there will be no record of the class or any letter grade on the student’s transcript. Furthermore, the student’s class load will be reduced by the course credits, and this may affect his or her full-time or part-time student status. This, in turn, can impact financial aid, veterans benefits, and F-1/M-1 status. The student’s tuition will not be refunded.


Withdrawal from a Course

Students may withdraw from a course within the first 60 percent of a session without academic penalty and will receive a grade of W. Students may withdraw from a course through NOVAConnect or by completing a Withdrawal Initiated by the Student Form (125–047) and submitting it to the Student Services Center. Instructions for withdrawal from a course are outlined on the 125–047 Form. Withdrawal after the first 60 percent of the session will result in a grade of F, except under mitigating circumstances. See Grading System in the Academic Policies and Information section for an explanation of grades. The student’s money will not be refunded for courses from which he or she withdraws. To obtain a refund, students must have dropped the classes within the published tuition refund deadlines.

Late Withdrawal for Mitigating Circumstances

A student may request a late withdrawal for mitigating circumstances. Mitigating circumstances must have been severe, not foreseeable and/or could not have been reasonably prevented during the time period in question. Examples of situations that may fall into this category include:

  • A major medical emergency or severe, extended illness occurring during the semester the student is registered which requires hospitalization, is life-threatening, or is contagious and a danger to the remainder of the College community. A written verification by the attending physician is required.
  • Death of the student or a member of the student’s immediate family (mother, father, sister, brother, husband, wife, grandparent or child). An obituary or death certificate is required.
  • Mobilization, deployment, change of duty station or call to active duty for military students. A copy of the military orders is required.

The student will complete the Late Withdrawal for Mitigating Circumstances Form (125-047) with appropriate documents attached. Any documentation from medical or mental health personnel should be detailed enough for the dean of students to make an informed determination. The form will be submitted to the Office of the Dean of Students.

If the withdrawal is approved by the Dean of Students and the Academic Dean, a grade of W will be assigned to the student’s records. In most cases, Late Withdrawal for Mitigating Circumstances applies to all courses in which the student is currently enrolled. Withdrawal from fewer than all courses will be considered in extenuating circumstances.

Students may request consideration for a tuition refund by following the Business Office procedures.

Late withdrawal requests must be submitted by the end of the following semester:

  1. Last day of spring semester for the previous fall semester
  2. Last day of summer sessions for the previous spring semester
  3. Last day of fall semester for the previous summer session

No withdrawals will be permitted after these dates.

Withdrawal Policy for Students With Federal Financial Aid

Students who have received federal financial aid (Title IV) funds and have withdrawn from all their courses within the first 60 percent of their period of enrollment, or who drop, withdraw, or stop attending a course while not simultaneously attending another are subject to the mandatory refund policy for federal student financial aid (Return to Title IV or R2T4). Students must complete an official withdrawal (Form 125–047) and submit it to the Student Services Center. Students must include their last date of attendance in the course. The current financial aid handbook outlining complete details may be found on the financial aid website or at any campus Student Services Center. Financial aid recipients who stopped attending all courses and did not complete the “official” withdrawal process, but who can produce an instructor-documented last date of class attendance (i.e., last exam, last paper, etc.), will have R2T4 calculated based upon their last reported date of attendance.

For financial aid recipients who stopped attending all their courses and their last date of attendance is unknown, the calculation of federal refunds returned will be based upon the midpoint (50 percent) of the period of enrollment. Students who did not attend beyond the census date of a course will have their financial aid recalculated based upon the enrollment level of courses in which attendance beyond the census date was established. Such students may be liable for repayment of federal funds.

Financial aid applicants who withdraw from courses may have difficulty subsequently in achieving the satisfactory academic progress standards for financial aid (see Satisfactory Academic Progress on the financial aid website or in the Student Services Financial Aid Handbook). Failure to follow established procedures could affect a student’s future eligibility for financial aid benefits.

Withdrawal as a Result of Military Service

Military students who are mobilized or ordered to active duty, and request to be withdrawn from the College after the census date may contact their campus dean of students for assistance with the process of withdrawal from the College and tuition refund.

The military student needs to provide the dean with his/her name; Student ID number; and a copy of his/her military orders, deployment orders, or documentation indicating he or she must leave the area for service. If the service member used Tuition Assistance (TA), the service member must contact his/her military education counselor regarding dropping/canceling TA due to military-related duties or assignments. If the military member used VA benefits, it is the member’s responsibility to contact the College veterans office that certified the course. If the member needs guidance through this process, he/she should contact the Office of Military Services at militaryservices@nvcc.edu.

Withdrawal by Students Receiving Veterans Benefits

Students who have received any veterans benefits must also report their withdrawal to the veterans advisor. The Withdrawal Initiated by a Student Form (125-047) must include the student’s last date of class attendance. Failure to follow established procedures could affect his or her future eligibility for veterans benefits. For more guidance, contact any campus veterans advisor.

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