Part-Time Attendance Policy for Students in F-1 Nonimmigrant Status
- Final Semester when students have no sequences and fewer than 12 credits to complete; or
- Documented Medical Condition; or
- Annual Vacation (and student meets Berklee part-time enrollment criteria
Your Degree Audit must show less than 12 credits needed to complete and no prerequisite sequences (for example, PIVC-211 and PIVC-212) remaining.
To request part-time based on a final semester complete the online Part-Time Status Request Form for International Students. An international advisor will review your academic evaluation and if you meet the criteria, will approve part-time and issue a new Form I-20. The end date of your Form I-20 will be updated to the end of your declared final term.
Documented Medical Condition
A student may enroll part-time if medical documentation from a licensed medical doctor (defined by the Department of Homeland Security as Doctor of Osteopathy, Doctor of Medicine, or Licensed Clinical Psychologist) is submitted to the Counseling and Advising Center (CAC).
Documentation must be an original letter (not a copy, fax or scan) dated during current semester on official stationary from the hospital or doctor’s office including: diagnosis of condition or illness; statement that the medical condition warrants enrollment in less than 12 credits; indicate which term the part-time is being recommended; type of coursework that should be avoided due to the condition; doctor’s original signature and medical license number. A medical letter is valid for one-semester.
F-1 regulations permit up to 365 days for part-time enrollment due to medical reasons while in F-1 status.
To request part-time based on a documented medical condition complete the online Part-Time Status Request Form for International Students and submit the required medical documentation to an international advisor at the CAC. The advisor will review the medical documentation and if it meets the above requirements, will approve part-time and issue a new Form I-20.
The doctor's letter can be mailed to or brought into the CAC front counter.
Students who take a medical leave of absence in the fall are not eligible for Berklee-sponsored health insurance until their next enrolled term.
F-1 regulations require enrollment in two semesters per calendar year (January-December). Berklee offers three semesters (Spring, Summer and Fall) each year. Students are expected to enroll full-time in the semester immediately following a declared vacation. Students who wish to enroll at Berklee during their annual vacation must meet the Berklee part-time criteria:
Summer: Must have been enrolled full-time in the spring and intend to enroll in the fall. To request part-time based on an annual vacation in the Summer complete the online Part-Time Status Request Form for International Students.
Fall: Must have been enrolled spring and summer and have fewer than 24 credits with a prerequisite sequence remaining to meet graduation requirements. To request part-time based on an annual vacation complete the online Part-Time Status Request Form for International Students and complete a Vacation Form with an international advisor at the CAC. A new I-20 with vacation remarks will be issued and the vacation and reported to USCIS.
Spring: Must have been enrolled in the previous fall term, and either spring or summer the year before and have fewer than 24 credits with a prerequisite sequence remaining to meet graduation requirements. To request part-time based on an annual vacation complete the online Part-Time Status Request Form for International Students and complete a Vacation Form with an international advisor at the CAC. A new I-20 with vacation remarks will be issued and the vacation and reported to USCIS.
Students must obtain authorization from the Counseling and Advising Center prior to enrolling in less than 12 credits. If students fall below 12 credits without prior approval, under SEVIS requirements this is considered a “reportable event” and the college is required to report it to the DHS within twenty-one days. If the reason for less than full-time attendance is not among those listed above, the College is required to report the student’s F-1 status to DHS as “terminated”. Authorization for enrollment in fewer than 12 credits may affect scholarship award; students must check with the Scholarship Office prior to enrolling in fewer than 12 credits.
Students in their first or second semester of undergraduate study in the United States may be permitted to complete less than 12 credits, if they are having initial difficulties with the English language or reading requirements, or unfamiliarity with American teaching methods. Students must be registered for 12 credits, receive a recommendation from their teacher(s) and authorization from their International Advisor prior to withdrawing below 12 credits and resume full-time attendance at the next available semester.
When a student does not have 12 required credits remaining and cannot complete their program in the current semester due to prerequisites, he/she will need to enroll in classes not required for their program in order to maintain F-1 status. Students are responsible for their academic decisions. Therefore, Berklee strongly encourages students to plan their coursework with an academic and international student advisor each semester to develop an immediate and a long-term study plan that will maximize their meeting DHS enrollment requirements during their course of study.
Any international student wanting to enroll in fewer than 12 credits must submit an online Part-Time Status Request Form for International Students to request authorization for part-time enrollment status.
Failure to maintain full-time status has serious implications, such as inability to have an I-20 signed, loss of work permission, and/or being required to leave the U.S. It is the responsibility of each student to maintain status.
Students authorized for part-time status by the published deadline will be charged on a per credit basis.