The University of Massachusetts Amherst

The following outlines when and how to use the Course Change Request form for late add/drop, as well as the Late Withdrawal Petition for extenuating circumstances.

All written appeals should be made out to the Academic Dean for Engineering, Scott Civjanand sent to coeadvising [at] umass [dot] edu.

Please be sure to read instructions on using fillable PDF forms on the Engineering Forms and Regulations page.

Adding/Dropping a course with no record:

During the Add/Drop Period of the Fall and Spring semesters, students can add or drop courses in SPIRE with no record.  After this time, students must submit a Course Change Request form and a written explanation of why the add/drop is necessary.

Please note: When attempting to add a course late, you MUST check for time conflicts BEFORE submitting your paperwork!

Add/Drop Requests with no record:

  • Please address your letter to the Academic Dean for Engineering (see above) and include your name and Spire ID number.
  • The written explanation should be about a half a page long and include why the course was not added/dropped during the Add/Drop period (i.e., extenuating circumstances, last minute funding for an independent study, etc.).
  • If submitted after the last day to withdraw, the written explanation should be about a page long and include documentation of any extenuating circumstances. Late Add/Drops are very unlikely to be approved after the withdrawal deadline.
  • If Late Add request is for an Independent Study, department approval paperwork MUST be included in submission for Late Add to be processed.

Withdrawing from a course with a W:

Between the end of Add/Drop and the last day to withdraw (viewable at the Registrar website), students can use SPIRE to withdraw from a course (with a W on their transcript). To do so, log into SPIRE and click "manage classes" then "Add/drop/edit" on left, then "W/DR Drop" (after Add/Drop).

After the last day to withdraw, students must submit a Late Withdrawal Petition in order to appeal to withdraw from a course. There must be extenuating circumstances to justify your request, e.g. severe illness, family emergency, etc. Students must provide verification of circumstances and a written explanation of why the withdrawal is necessary. 

  • Please address your letter to Academic Dean for Engineering (see above) and include your name and Spire ID number. 
  • Poor performance in a course is NOT a reason to request a late withdrawal. 
  • Please email coeadvising [at] umass [dot] edu to begin the appeal process.

The COE Academic Dean's Advisory Committee will review all requests for late withdrawals and will notify the student of the final decision via UMass email. The committee meets once a week during the Fall and Spring semesters, and on an as-needed basis in the Summer, to review requests. We make every effort to respond within 2 business days. Students must continue to attend class and complete all coursework until notified if a late withdrawal was approved. Filing a late withdrawal petition does NOT mean you are withdrawn from a class.

PLEASE NOTE: There are several factors to keep in mind when withdrawing from a course that will bring your enrollment total below a full-time load of 12 credits:

  • If you are an International Student, you must check with the International Programs Office, as this may affect your visa status.

  • If you are currently under your parents' health coverage, you may become ineligible. Most health insurance carriers require these students to remain full time in order to continue benefits.

  • If you are receiving financial aid and you change your status, your aid may be reduced. Please check with the Office of Financial Aid.