Course Load


University Policies: Course Load

All baccalaureate degree programs require at least 120 credit hours, but more may be required in some programs.  A typical schedule in the fall and spring semesters is 15 semester hours, but may vary by semester and program from 12 to 18 hours.  Some programs also have planned summer loads.

Students may need to prove full-time/half-time status in order to be eligible for dependent insurance and to defer repayment of some loans, among other reasons. Definitions of full-time/half-time are defined according to federal government regulations for financial aid recipients. Students will be certified as full-time if registered for 12 or more hours in any semester, including summer.  Cooperative internships also qualify for full-time status in some units.  For half-time status, students must be registered for a minimum of 6 hours during any semester, including summer.

Students in good standing typically may take no more than 18 hours in the fall and spring semesters.  Under special circumstances, students who have completed a minimum of 30 hours at UofL and who have a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 may request permission through their advising center to take an overload.  For the summer semester students are limited to 4 hours in the three-week summer session and 7 hours during each of the five-week summer sessions. Typically, there are no overloads for summer, though overload approvals may vary by unit. Permissions are handled by procedures determined by the Dean’s office in each unit, and some units may accept petitions for course overloads above those listed above. 

Students on academic warning or probation and students admitted in conditional status are limited to 13 hours during the fall and spring semesters and to a total of 10 semester hours during the summer sessions.

Unit-Specific Policies

In addition to the university-wide policies regarding Course Load, students may be subject to the unit-specific requirements listed below.

College of Arts and Sciences

Students with less than 30 hours at UofL and a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.5 may petition to take more than 18 hours. Students with a 3.0 grade point average at the University of Louisville may petition to take up to nine hours in a five-week session, but are still limited to a maximum of 18 hours in the summer semester. 

College of Business

Full-time status in the COB can also be met by being registered for 3 credit hours of approved COB Co-op in a given semester. Co-op credit hours count toward the total hours taken. All COB students considering COB Co-op should evaluate course loads in terms of individual needs and plan accordingly with the assistance of an academic advisor. Other academic course load during a Co-op semester should be severely limited. Students should check with their financial aid lending institution when considering the impact of COB Co-op on financial planning for semesters involving co-op work.

Students on academic warning and probation are also restricted to no more than one course per summer term.

Note: The College of Business reserves the right to administratively withdraw students from courses based on academic policies.

College of Education & Human Development

The maximum load for the summer semester is 15 semester hours. 

Kent School of Social Work

The maximum load in summer sessions is 3 semester hours for the first term and 6 semester hours in the second and third terms. Students should note that the Kent summer term, if taking social work electives, extends across all three summer terms and should work with their advisor to determine their summer load. 

Students on academic warning and probation and students admitted on limited load are limited to 13 hours during the fall and spring semesters and to a total of 12 semester hours during the summer session. 

School of Music

Overload students in the School of Music may not exceed 20 credit hours per semester.  A petition will be required for each semester of overload request. 

School of Music students on probation are limited to a maximum of 14 credit hours per semester and students admitted in conditional status to a maximum of 14 credit hours.  No overloads will be approved while a student remains in such status.  Summer session enrollments will be limited to a maximum of 4 credit hours for three-week terms and 7 credit hours for five-week terms.

Speed School of Engineering

Students may take a maximum of 18 credit hours each fall and spring semester and 13 credit hours in the summer term. In special circumstances during fall and spring semesters, students may register for 19 credit hours with permission from the Associate Dean for Academic and Student Affairs.

Students on either academic warning or academic probation status are limited to no more than 13 credit hours during fall and spring semesters and 7 credit hours during the summer term.