When Is Dropping a Class the Right Decision?

There are various reasons for dropping a college class. But is it always the right decision? The following factors can help you decide whether or not dropping a class is a wise choice.

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Dropping a Class Before the Deadline

Every college has different policies in terms of when to drop a course without being penalized both monetarily and on your transcript. Colleges have set dates in which you can drop a course, request a full refund and not have it appear on your transcript as a 'withdrawal', or even worse, as an 'F.' You can find out the dates and penalties for dropping a course by visiting your college's Admissions or Registration office.

Your Academic Goals

Many students learn that dropping a course may force them to take an additional semester in order to make up for that course. This can affect your anticipated graduation date. It's also important to find out if you really need the course. An elective you don't need is more droppable than a required course in your major. With that said, be sure a class isn't a prerequisite for another you want to take down the line.'s College Major and Career Options course can help you find the right major, which could decrease the likelihood of needing to drip a course.

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Dissatisfaction with Course Grades

You might have been doing well in the class but received a low score on a test, which brought your grade down significantly, or the course is just more challenging than you anticipated. Before dropping the class, you should take steps to improve your grades by using's courses, which are a fun and engaging way to learn. These courses are available in many different subjects and have bite-size lessons to help you reinforce you knowledge. You can use lesson quizzes to verify that you understand the material and can access the materials anytime, so you could even study for a bit in between classes.

Medical Condition or Family Issue

Maybe you're going through a serious medical condition or family issue, which makes school a second priority. Consider speaking to your professor to find out about possible accommodations, such as extending a project due date. However, if you decide it's best to drop the course based on your situation, make sure the college is aware of your legitimate reason in order to minimize potential negative repercussions. Ultimately, taking care of yourself should always be your foremost concern, even if your academics could suffer as a result.

Keep in mind that dropping a class should be a last resort. Before enrolling in a class, find out if it offers a pass/no credit option. This option can help quell the fear of receiving a poor grade.

Recovering Your Credits

If you do have to drop a course, you may be able to recover some through Find out more about how you can earn college credit online.

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