U Graduate School implements 2-semester registration policy

In response to student concerns, graduate students must now register for both fall and spring terms to maintain an active student status.

The change from required yearly to biannual registration will allow the University Graduate School to monitor student status and enrollment more closely and will help students avoid having to apply for readmission, said Karen Starry, director of Graduate School student services.

“Students have been expressing concerns about maintaining their active status,” Starry said. “This change should correct any confusion on how to remain active.”

Until the changes, there were no clear definitions on how students could remain active. For instance, if a student takes several semesters off, Starry said, the student might have to apply for readmission.

Most graduate students already register for classes twice per year like undergraduate registration, but some graduate students take a semester off to work or take personal time, said Chris Frazier, president of the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly.

The old system allowed students to take time off, not notify the Graduate School and still have an active status.

But the new system requires graduate students who opt to take time off a chance to register for Grad 0999 – a zero-credit, free option – to meet the new registration requirement.

Frazier said the change does not help international students and students who rely on financial aid.

“Many students need to remain full time, and they have to register for classes anyway,” she said.

Frazier said she is hesitant about the new system because of its quick implementation.

– Elizabeth Putnam