Special Academic Problems

Not all special academic problems can be predicted, but some examples of how a student might seek support from the DUS in petitioning the Committee on Honors and Academic Standing might be useful. A student might enter a major late and require a ninth term in order to complete its requirements; in that event, the student will ask the DUS to write to the committee confirming the necessity of a ninth term and recommending it. A student might seek the support of the DUS in petitioning the committee to allow more than the usual quota of four course credits earned at a Yale professional school1 or more than the usual ration of two course credits earned at another university. The student might ask the DUS to recommend that the student be allowed to take a heavier-than-usual course load, to enroll late in a course, or to exceed the number of credits of independent research a student is normally allowed to enroll in before the senior year. And so on. In each such case, the student will take the initiative in consulting you. Your role is to assist the committee in reaching an educationally sound decision by addressing the academic merits of the student’s request, particularly as they relate to the program of study in the major.


This is most likely to occur with students seeking to take more than four credits in the School of Music, though it may occasionally occur with students wishing to take courses in the Schools of Art, Architecture, or Forestry & Environmental Studies. [See sample instructions (PDF) for petitioning the Committee to exceed the four-credit limit of courses in the School of Music in the Appendix section.] Mutatis mutandis, these procedures should be used whenever a student wishes to exceed the four-credit limit on courses in professional schools of the University, whether the courses are all in one school or in some combination of schools. Note that there is no restriction on the number of courses that a student may take in the Graduate School.