As the fall semester comes to an end, some students may decide to drop a class late, a process that takes specific steps to complete, according to UC Berkeley administrators.
According to Jennifer Johnson-Hanks, campus executive dean of the College of Letters and Science, or Letters and Science, some students may consider dropping classes late when an academic schedule suddenly becomes unmanageable, which could occur due to significant changes late in the semester.
Though students may drop classes, there are some challenges to doing so. Johnson-Hanks said the first main issue associated with dropping classes is going below the minimum units for financial aid, and for international students, going below the minimum units for visa requirements. The second is making slower progress toward degree requirements.
“Whether these are problems for a student depends on their own circumstances,” said Johnson-Hanks in an email. “They should consult with their advisor to decide their best course of action.”
Letters and Science made their policy more generous recently, said Johnson-Hanks. They have allowed students to change their schedule late two times. Dropping classes late has been the most common late action; others may include late drop of early drop deadline courses or late change of grading options.
This summer, students received a clean slate, in which late actions taken before fall 2021 do not count toward their two-action limit.
The student’s respective college or school is responsible for reviewing the late changes.
Students can change their schedule themselves in CalCentral. For students in Letters and Science, students can go to “My Dashboard” and select “L&S Late Schedule Change.”
Students with special circumstances, such as athletes, international students or simultaneous degree students, may require other signatures and processes to have their change granted.
“Please consider your request carefully and meet with a L&S College Adviser if you have any questions,” the L&S Advising website reads. “It will be important to consider the impact of late action on your financial aid, progress toward degree, or academic standing, as these things are not checked during petition processing.”