Registration Process

Registration for the Spring semester usually begins in November; registration for the Fall generally starts in March. Students are given priority for registration based on the number of credit hours they have earned, including transfer credits. The number of hours earned does not include those in progress. Registration dates, and instructions on how to register, may be found on the Registrar’s website.

CCAS Advising Holds

A hold is a restriction placed on a student’s record by a GW department (e.g., Student Accounts, CCAS Advising, Gelman Library, Medical Services). A hold will prevent any registration transactions from occurring until it is removed by the office which placed it. Students should check for holds each semester, prior to registration and more information regarding holds can be found on the Registrar's website

All CCAS first-time students (freshmen and transfer), some students with no declared major, and students on academic probation, will have a CCAS Advising hold placed on their account. Freshmen must participate in a group advising session with their advising POD in order to learn necessary resources for a successful registration to remove their hold.  Students with 45 earned hours and no major must declare a major to get their hold lifted. Specific information about CCAS Advising Holds can be found here.

Credit Limits

Eligibility for 18th credit hour:
Student must be in good academic standing.
Student cannot have any pending Incomplete grades.
Student cannot have any grades of F, W, Z or NP from the previous semester.
Eligibility for 19 or more credit hours:
Student must be in good academic standing.
Student must have earned a 3.5 semester GPA with at least 12 credit hours earned in the previous semester OR have a cumulative GPA of 3.3.
Student cannot have any pending Incomplete grades.
Student cannot have any grades of F, W, Z or NP from the previous semester.


Students may add courses online during open registration, on GWeb, through the second week of class.

After the second week of classes, students may add a course by using the Registration Transaction Form-EZ (RTF-EZ) form submitted directly to the Registrar’s office, Marvin Center Ground Floor.  Any course(s) added must have the permission and signature of the instructor or department. 


Students may drop courses online during open registration, on GWeb, through the fourth week of class.

After the fourth week, it is considered a withdrawal and a notation of “W” will appear on the transcript.  Students may withdraw online via GWeb through the end of the 10th week of class. If a student is unsure about withdrawing from a course, they can refer to the Withdrawal FAQ information or set up an appointment with an advisor in their POD to discuss this further.

Any changes to registration that require Dean’s permission (i.e., time conflicts, re-taking a course, changing from letter-grade to pass/no pass) must be completed using the Registration Transaction Form (RTF) and submitted to Phillips Hall 107.

Deadline dates for each semester are available online through the Registrar’s website.

Students should be sure to drop and add courses in the same web transaction or on the same form.  Failure to stay within 12 – 17 credit hours may result in additional tuition charges.

Departmental Approval

If a course states departmental approval is needed, students need to inquire directly with that department.

If approved, students should get the RTF-EZ or RTF (whichever is appropriate) signed by the department, and hand it into the Registrar’s office, Marvin Center Ground Floor.

Closed Courses

If a course becomes closed, students can continue to monitor the schedule of classes during the online drop/add period to see if a spot becomes open, or to see if a waitlist exists.

Students may inquire with the professor of the course to see if they can be signed in via the RTF-EZ form, however students should keep in mind that not all courses are able to accommodate additional students due to content of the course or the size of the classroom. Students may not be signed into classes if a waitlist exists for the course and students should add themselves to the waitlist.

If a professor agrees to sign-in a student, this is not a guarantee, as another check for actual physical space in the classroom is made by the Registrar's Office, after the RTF-EZ form is submitted.

If a student is in need of fulfilling a major/minor requirement in a limited period of time, they should contact their major/minor faculty advisor or the department.

A course may be restricted to students in the major/minor, or a certain class year.  In these cases, students must either declare the major/minor, or have current class standing required to sign up for the course.

Adding an Hour to a Course

Students looking to add an hour to a course first need to get permission from the professor.

The course must be an upper-level CCAS course (2000-4000 level). If the professor approves, you will decide together on what additional work you will do to earn the extra credit hour.

Complete the Add an Hour form and the professor must explain how you will earn the additional credit and sign the form.

Complete a Registration Transaction Form as well, along with the professor's signature, to "add" the course for 4 credits and "drop" the course for 3 credits, for instance.

Both forms should be turned into Phillips 107. Once the additional credit has been approved, the RTF will be processed.

Consortium Courses

GW offers its undergraduate students the opportunity to enroll in courses at other universities through the Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metropolitan Area. For more information visit the Registrar's website.

Explanation of Course Numbers

The numbers 1000–4999 are used to designate courses intended for undergraduates.

Courses numbered 1000–1999 are generally planned for students in their freshman year. Courses numbered 1000 are Dean’s Seminars, and are open only to Columbian College freshman.

Courses numbered 2000-4000 are considered upper-level courses, often have pre-requisites, and are primarily intended for sophomores, juniors, and seniors.

Courses numbered 6000 and above are for graduate students.  Only with the approval of the instructor may qualified seniors only take a graduate level course.  Seniors should identify themselves to the graduate course professor to seek approval/get signed into the course.

Summer Courses

Students can take summer courses at GW or online through GW.

Students can also take courses elsewhere during the summer so long as they follow the transfer credit guidelines.