layer hidden off the screen
Penn State DUS Navigator 101 sailing ship




Lesson 8: Should I consider dropping a course?

Purpose: To inform you of the late drop policy, guide you in assessing your grades, and help you decide if you should take any action.

There is no worksheet for this lesson, but you should complete the assignment below by the late drop deadline.

For help completing this lesson, view the student example.



Late Drop Policy

Dropping a full-semester course after the drop/add period through the end of the twelfth week of a fifteen-week semester is called a “late drop.”

Part-semester courses have different late-drop deadlines. To check the late-drop deadline for each course on your schedule, use the eLion Course Drop Dates application.

See the Undergraduate Advising Handbook for the complete “Late Course Drop” policy.


Some Reasons for Late Dropping a Course
  • You'll probably fail the course.
  • You probably won't fail the course, but you're getting a lower grade than you want or than is needed to meet a requirement.
  • You're behind in all of your courses and dropping one will help you catch up in the others.
  • You're not interested in finishing the course because your educational plans have changed.
  • You think your grade-point average will be too low if you keep the course.
  • You need more time for work, study, family responsibilities, etc.

Assessing Your Grades

Before you consider late dropping any course, you need to accurately assess your chances of earning satisfactory final grades. If you're unsure of the grading policies, your current grades, or how final grades will be determined in each of your courses, meet with your instructors to help you make accurate assessments.
  1. Make a list your courses and current grades.
  2. Review the grading policy in each course syllabus to determine how your final grade will be calculated.
  3. Consider the work remaining in each course and how it will affect your final grade. If you determine that it's not possible to earn a satisfactory final grade, you may want to consider late dropping the course.
Note: If you would like to calculate your semester and cumulative grade-point averages based on the grades you predict for each of your courses, use the eLion GPA Prediction application.


Deciding Whether or Not to Late Drop a Course

eLion provides a Late Course Drop application to help you decide whether or not to late drop a course. This interactive advising application simulates a one-on-one conversation with an academic adviser. eLion will access your academic records and ask you key questions. eLion will then use this information to advise you about the outcomes of late dropping a particular course as well as about some alternatives to late drop.


Taking Action

If you decide that late dropping a course is the best action to take, you can process the late course drop on eLion.

You can late drop only one course at a time through eLion. If you're considering late dropping more than one course, consult with an academic adviser first.


Privacy and Legal Statements | Copyright | © The Pennsylvania State University | Division of Undergraduate Studies | May 14, 2009 | Contact