Course Loads


During regular terms, you are considered a full-time student if you carry 12-or-more units of credit.  However, if you want to complete a bachelor degree program (most of which require 120 units) within eight terms, you must take at least 15 units per term—unless you take courses during Summer or Winter terms.


You can only carry an overload—more than 19 units—with the approval of your advisor, but you cannot carry more than 24 units per term. After obtaining the proper approval on the Overload Approval form, you must submit the form when you enroll in courses.


You may be required to have a minimum grade point average before an overload is approved. The recommended undergraduate grade point average for carrying an overload is as follows:


Overload Units

Grade Point Average

20 units

at least 2.95

21-24* units

at least 3.2

*Overloads above 24 units are not approved under any circumstances.


You are responsible for applying for overload approval. Approval is contingent on your past academic performance and an evaluation of your ability to satisfactorily complete the courses for which you wish to enroll.


Per Arizona Board of Regents policy:


NAU will not grant unit overloads for the summer or winter sessions. Courses offered during the winter and/or summer sessions are accelerated to fit within the limited time periods. The unit maximums have been established to account for these conditions and are consistent with the regular, 15-week term limits.


The minimum full-time course load for graduate students is 9 units of credit during fall or spring term, with 16 units as the maximum (12 units for graduate assistants). You cannot take more than 6 units of credit during any five-week summer session or more than 1 unit per week for pre-session courses.


Graduate assistants must register for at least 9 units of credit that will count toward their degree requirements during every semester for which they are employed as a graduate assistant.


If a graduate assistant wishes to be enrolled for fewer than the required units, the student must submit a Request for Exception to the Nine-Unit Registration Requirement, available on the Graduate College Website.


You can only carry an overload (more than the maximum units explained in the previous paragraph) with the approval of your advisor, the department chair, and the associate dean of the Graduate College. To enroll for an overload, you must submit the appropriate approval form when you enroll. This form is available from the Registrar's website,