Course Registration

Courses offered by the university are designed to meet the needs of degree-seeking students. Courses ordinarily meet for fifteen weeks (fall and spring) or between four and eight weeks (summer). 

Academic Year

Naropa University operates on the semester system. Academic credit is awarded in terms of semester credit hours. One semester credit hour represents at least fifteen hours of classroom contact. The academic year has two fifteen-week semesters, fall and spring. In addition, some graduate programs also have a required summer session. Please see individual programs for details. The summer session generally runs for eight weeks.

Credit Hour Policy

In accordance with federal policy, Naropa University defines a credit hour as the amount of work represented in the achievement of learning outcomes (verified by evidence of student achievement) that reasonably approximates one hour (50 minutes) of classroom or direct faculty instruction, and a minimum of two hours of out-of-class student work (i.e., Carnegie Unit Credit Hour).

Contact/Meeting Hours Required per Credit

Credits awarded Minimum contact time per week for 15 weeks Minimum instructional time per semester Minimum out-of-class student work
1 1 contact hour 15 hours 30 hours
2 2 contact hours 30 hours 60 hours
3 3 contact hours 45 hours 90 hours
4 4 contact hours 60 hours 120 hours


Other Curriculum Delivery Modes

An equivalent amount of work is required to satisfy the university credit hour policy for differently formatted academic courses, such as summer terms, laboratory work, internships, practica, independent study, distance, studio work, weekend workshops, and any other academic modalities that award academic credit.

Graduate and Undergraduate Course Levels

Naropa University’s courses are designated as graduate (500 and above) and undergraduate (100–499), and have course work and expectations corresponding to those levels. Because of this, graduate students may not, under any circumstances, take undergraduate-level courses to fulfill any requirements for their graduate degree.

Undergraduate junior- or senior-level students may take graduate courses (courses with only a graduate number) toward their undergraduate degree only with the permission of their advisor, the instructor, and the dean of Naropa College. Programs reserve the right to approve or deny undergraduate participation in graduate courses. Undergraduate students should carefully review with their advisor, and financial aid (where applicable) to ensure that graduate courses will fit into their degree. Graduate-level courses taken by an undergraduate may not count toward a graduate degree at Naropa (the course may not be used to satisfy two degrees).

Academic Advising

Each student is assigned an academic advisor. With the help of their academic advisor, each student is responsible for ensuring that all program and university academic requirements are met for degree completion. Academic advisors guide students during their studies and help ensure that the student is working toward satisfying all degree completion requirements while developing a coherent curriculum. Advisors review course selections for the student before each semester’s registration, and support student requests for independent study and private music lessons, along with other curricular and policy exceptions and special opportunities. Undergraduate academic advisors are responsible for supporting student completion of all BA degree requirements, including core, major(s), and minor(s). The Registrar's Office conducts a final evaluation of each student's academic record when the student applies for degree completion. 

New Student Registration

New undergraduate students who are scheduled to begin in the fall semester will be invited to register over the summer during the early access registration period, with assistance from an undergraduate academic advisor. Students will receive an email with registration instructions, along with additional materials that will help in preparing them for registration. Included in this communication will be contact information to set up an early access registration appointment, over the phone, with an undergraduate academic advisor. Spring undergraduate students who submit their confirmation deposit early will also be eligible for early access registration. Students with special accomodations and veterans will continue to have early access registration benefits until the beginning of classes. All students who do not register through the early access registration option will be given their MyNaropa and student email information and will register during new student orientation.

New graduate students will receive an email from the Registrar’s Office with registration instructions, along with additional materials that will help in preparing them for registration. Included in this email will be the specific time for which students are scheduled to register via MyNaropa. Students with special accomodations and veterans will have priority registration status as they are admitted to the program. Incoming graduate students will also receive information from their program with specific information on the courses for which they need to register.

Registration Planning and Clearance

All returning degree-seeking students may register during the fall semester for spring courses, and during the spring semester for summer and fall courses.

During the registration planning and clearance period, students meet with their advisors, who review transcripts and degree requirements. The advisor reviews course selections, clears the student for registration, and signs any forms that may be required (such as those for independent study or private music lessons). Students then register via MyNaropa at their designated times. Students cannot register themselves for independent study courses, private music lessons, or consortium agreement courses. The Registrar's Office registers these courses when the completed application is received, but no later than the add/drop deadline.

Registration times are based on a student’s seniority, calculated using total earned credit hours plus credits in progress. All current students who are military veterans, or who have special accommodation plans in place, are given priority registration status. (See Registration Schedules for appropriate registration times.)

Add/Drop Period

The add/drop period allows a student to attend at least one class meeting to determine whether the course is suitable for the student’s academic journey. However, certain courses have an alternate add/drop schedule. Students should consult the course schedule to confirm the last day of add/drop.

Students may adjust their schedule for different courses, course sections, and pass/fail or letter grade options during the add/drop period. The add/drop period for most courses ends at midnight on the ninth day of classes for the fall and spring semesters. Students who have not registered for any credits by the end of add/drop are considered “unknown withdrawal.” Some courses with irregular start and end dates have different deadlines. These deadlines are listed in the course schedule. The summer add/drop period is significantly different for each course and is listed in the summer schedule of classes. There are no tuition penalties for adding or dropping courses during the add/drop period. However, there may be some financial aid implications. Students should be aware that failure to attend classes during the add/drop period—even those classes missed before the student added the course—may count toward course absences, and the student may be required to make up class time missed. Changes made after this period carry both academic and financial penalties. Fees are not returned after add/drop.

It is expected that during the add/drop period, students will evaluate the course for its appropriateness and that the instructor will use this time to assist students in making decisions about the appropriateness of the course. At no time should an instructor ask a student to drop or withdraw, nor should students expect to get a refund beyond what is provided for in the add/drop and withdrawal period policies for those classes that do not suit their needs.

Withdrawal Period

Students may withdraw from (but not add) courses during the withdrawal period. For most courses, the withdrawal period begins on the tenth day of classes and ends with the sixth week of classes for the fall and spring semesters. Some courses with irregular start or end dates have different deadlines. See for more information. The summer withdrawal period is significantly different for each course, and is printed in the summer schedule of classes. If a student withdraws from a course during this period, the grade of “W” for “withdrawal” will appear next to the course title on the student’s transcript. A partial reduction of tuition may apply. Fees are not refunded in the withdrawal period.

Beginning with the seventh week of classes for the fall and spring semesters, no further changes in a student’s schedule are allowed, except in the case of a documented medical or family emergency. If a student fails to attend or stops attending a course without dropping or withdrawing, a grade of “F” will appear on transcripts for that course.

For the Drop, Add, and Withdrawal Schedule for Most Fifteen-Week Courses, please refer to the Tuition Refund Policy section of this catalog.

Wait Lists

A student attempting to register for a course that has no available seats may choose to be placed on a wait list. As openings occur, the student will be registered for the course and will be notified by Naropa email. Students are responsible for checking their email and MyNaropa regarding wait-listed courses. Failure to do so will not relieve students of academic or financial responsibility for the course.

A student on a wait list should attend the course and complete the work until notified that they cannot be added to the course, or until the end of add/drop—whichever occurs first. A student who does not wish to be in the course should drop themselves from the wait list immediately, regardless of their position on the wait list.

Wait-listed students should check with their advisor or MyNaropa before the end of add/drop if they have any questions about their status in a wait-listed class.

If an opening does not occur by the last day of add/drop, the wait-listed student must stop attending the course.

Students on financial aid are responsible for being registered for the minimum number of credits they need to receive their financial aid. Wait-listed classes do not count toward that minimum. Students who are registered for less than their minimum should consider dropping any wait-listed courses and registering for a course that still has openings.

For any question about a financial aid award, students should check with the Financial Aid Office.

Jury Duty

Students who are called to jury duty and are not subject to an exemption will be excused from class for jury duty. Students must provide their certificate of participation after jury service to each faculty member whose class was missed. Students will be given an opportunity to make up any classes or course work missed because of jury duty. In the event that students complete the make-up assignment within the time frame established by the faculty, they will not be charged with an absence as the result of jury service.


If a student fails to drop or withdraw from courses or workshops for which the student has registered and is no longer attending, the student will receive the grade of “F.” The student is liable for full tuition and fees for those courses, regardless of whether the student attended the courses.

Registration Holds

A student with outstanding financial obligations to the university will not be permitted to register until payment has been made or arranged with the coordinator of student accounts. Such obligations include, but are not limited to, tuition and fees, transportation fines, library fines, and loan payments.

Changing a Course Status

From Credit to Audit

If the course has seats available and a student wants to audit, the student must drop the course via MyNaropa during the add/drop period for the course and submit an Audit form to Student Administrative Services within one week of the add/drop period for that course.

From a Letter Grade to Pass/Fail

A student may only change from letter grade to pass/fail, or vice versa, during the add/drop period. This change can be made by submitting the Letter Grade to Pass/Fail form to the Student Administrative Services Office before the last day of add/drop for the course. Students must obtain permission from an advisor before making this change.

From Audit to Credit

A student may not change a course status from audit to credit.

Courses Requiring Prerequisites or Permission

If a course listing stipulates that a prerequisite is necessary or permission of the instructor or program is required, it is the student’s responsibility to comply with this requirement. Failure to do so will prevent registration access to the course. To obtain permission to be in a course for which a student has not met the prerequisite or course requirement, the student should contact the faculty teaching the course. After obtaining permission and course authorization from the instructor, the student must register for the course via MyNaropa.

Repeating Courses for Credit

Some Naropa courses can be repeated for credit. These courses are listed on MyNaropa and may be taken multiple times for credit. Each time the course is taken, the grade will be calculated in the GPA. Courses that cannot be repeated for credit may be taken a second time for a better grade. However, only the final time such a course is taken will earn credit and be calculated into the GPA. Students should consult with their advisors if they are considering retaking a class for any reason.