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Replacing a lost, damaged, or stolen I-20 or DS-2019

Requesting a Reduced Course Load

Reduced Course Load for F-1/J-1 Students


To maintain F-1/J-1 status, international students must be enrolled in a full course of study at the start of the fall and spring semesters.

F-1/J-1 students may request a Reduced Course Load (RCL) through the RCL eForm in the following circumstances:

Students in their final semester of study.

Graduate students whose final academic requirement is a thesis or dissertation and who are required to take one continuing registration credit.

  • Thesis/dissertation graduate students who have completed all coursework credits, including all research, dissertation, and thesis credit hours may request a reduced course load. Speak with your academic advisor if you are unsure what your final academic requirement is.
    • **Thesis/dissertation F-1 students who are approved for a reduced course load and then change their final academic requirement may be violating their immigration status and not be eligible for post-OPT.

To be eligible for a reduced course load all F-1/J-1 students must:

  • Meet one of the above circumstances.
  • Maintain in-person presence throughout the entire semester.
    • If you only have 1 class left to complete, it must be hybrid or fully in-person.
    • You may only enroll in either 1 class or 3 credits that are virtual.
  • Have a valid I-20/DS-2019 for the entire semester (see information on extending your I-20 or extending your DS-2019);
  • Be inside the United States. Please inform the ISSC if you are planning to enroll in classes while outside of the United States.

The RCL eForm will open for each semester on the degree conferral date of the previous semester in the MyISSC eForm Portal. For example, the Fall semester RCL eForm will open on the degree conferral date of the Spring semester. Please enroll before submitting your request.

Please keep in mind that: 

  • You need authorization to take courses outside of ASU. See our Additional coursework outside of ASU webpage for more information.
  • An RCL is not required if your remaining credits are online as these will need to be completed outside of the U.S.
  • An RCL is not required during the summer semester for continuing students.
  • If summer is your final semester in your degree program, you do not need to file an RCL. However, you cannot be enrolled in only online classes. In-person enrollment and on-campus presence is required.

Students with a medical issue in the current semester. 
If you would like to request a reduced course load based on medical reasons, please consult with an advisor as soon as possible. Medical documentation is required to apply and must be signed by a medical doctor, psychiatrist, licensed psychologist, doctor of osteopathy, or a clinical psychologist.