Reduced Course Load Authorization

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Reduced Course Load Authorization

F-1 students must enroll full time during Fall and Spring semester in order to maintain their non-immigrant status. Full time credit load is 12 for undergraduate and 8 for graduate students. However, in certain situations, students may apply to drop below full course load. Please fill out this form to request Reduced Course Load (RCL) authorization.

Important Notes

You may lose eligibility for financial aid/grant/scholarship if you are not a full-time student. Please check with Student Financial Services for your case.


Residential Life requires students to be full-time to be eligible to live on-campus (12 credits or more for undergraduates and 8 credits or more for graduate students). If you have an on-campus housing assignment for the semester in which you will be under-enrolled, please contact Residential Life to be approved to live on-campus.


Do NOT drop below full time without receiving prior RCL authorization from ISS. This will result in termination of your SEVIS record.


Academic difficulty RCL can only be approved once per academic level.


Final term RCL can only be approved twice.

Student Information

This number can be found at the top right on the first page of your I-20. It has 10 digits and stars with N000

Supporting Evidence Requirement

In order for your request to be approved, you will need to provide proof as specified below.

For Final Term

Provide a statement from an academic advisor confirming that you have applied for graduation and completing your program of study at the end of the semester which you are applying for RCL. The statement can be in the form of an email sent to from a PLU email account. You may copy the template below and email it to your academic advisor as an example. 



RE: Reduced Course Load Authorization for <<Name of the Student>>

I am an academic advisor of the above student. The student <<is/ is NOT>> expected to complete all degree requirements at the end of <<Fall/ Spring>> Semester 20__.

I <<support/ do NOT support>> the student's request for Reduced Course Load because the student <<will/ will NOT>> complete all degree requirements necessary for graduation at the end of the semester for which <<he/she>> is applying for RCL.

For Illness or Medical Condition

Provide a statement from a licensed medical doctor, doctor of osteopathy, or licensed clinical psychologist to substantiate the illness or medical condition. The statement can be in the form of a letter using office letterhead or in the form of an email with a signature. The letter does not need to be a original. It can be faxed, copied or scanned and emailed to ISS.

We do not require doctors or students to tell us what the medical condition is. The statement can be as simple as "STUDENT NAME is under my professional care for a medical condition which requires him/her to have a reduced course load (or be absent from school) until DATE."

For Academic Difficulty

Provide statement(s) of support from professor(s) or an academic advisor regarding your situation in class(es) that you wish to withdraw from. The statement can be in the form of an email sent to from a PLU email account.

The Drop Form

If you are requesting RCL in the midst of academic semester for illness, medical or academic difficulty reasons, once your RCL is approved by ISS, you need to turn in the Drop form to the Office of The Registrar. The form may require a signature from your course instructor.  Be sure to check the deadline for last day to submit this form. The Registrar's Office will charge $100 for this process.

Request Submission

By pressing submit below, I am submitting a RCL Authorization Request. I understand that this request needs to accompany supporting evidence(s). I will drop off supporting evidence(s) at International Student Center front desk (Harstad 112) or have my supporters email them to I will NOT drop below full course load before receiving an approval notification by email from ISS.

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