Office of the Registrar

Course Repeat Policy

Approved through University Governance March 2016:

Course Repeat Policy

The university has established the following policy for undergraduate students regarding the repeating of courses.

  • You may repeat up to four different courses taken at the university, regardless of the original grade earned in these courses.  Please review the Course Sequencing Policy for additional information.
  • You may repeat a course only once.
  • If you choose to repeat a course, both grades for the course will be posted on your transcript but only the second grade will be counted toward your grade point average and you will only receive graduation credit for the second course.  The first course will be noted on your transcript as an “excluded repeat”.
  • If you take a course at the university that is equivalent to a course you transferred in to the university, you will lose credit for the transfer course.
  • The course repeated must be identical to the first course taken (same department, same course number and title, same number of credits).
  • You may not repeat a course after graduation.  
  • Certain courses (such as Special Topics and Independent Study courses, among others) are designated as “repeatable for credit”.  A grade earned in such a course cannot be replaced by a grade from a later retake of the course.  This means that each grade will count toward the student’s cumulative average, and each time the student passes such a course s/he will earn credits. 
  • Certain colleges and/or majors may have additional limitations on which or how many courses may be retaken.  Students are advised to check with their major departments before repeating any course.


Please Be Aware That:
  • The grade for the repeated course is used for your GPA, even if that grade is lower than the grade you received the first time you took the course.
  • Repeating a previously passed course may affect your financial aid.  You should consult with your financial aid counselor if you are considering repeating a course that you have previously passed.
  • It is your responsibility to be aware of the course repeat policy.  Although WISER will not prohibit you from registering for an illegal repeat, any illegal repeats will be removed from your transcript.
  • You may lose credit if you take courses out of sequence.  Please review Course Sequencing Policy if you are considering repeating a course that is part of a sequence.
  • If you have a previous bachelor’s degree from UMass Boston, you may not repeat any courses that were part of your first undergraduate degree. 

Frequently Asked Questions Regarding the Course Repeat Policy


Q:     I've withdrawn from a course. If I retake this course will it count as one of the four times I am allowed to repeat courses?

A:     No

Q:     I've taken Spanish 101 and 102. Can I repeat Spanish 101 for a better grade?

A:     No. Courses that are part of a true sequence cannot be repeated out of sequence. This includes math and foreign language courses.  See the Course Sequence Policy for further information.

Q:     I've already repeated four courses in my career at UMass Boston. I have to repeat another course to get accepted into a particular major. What can I do?

A:     Exceptions to the course repetition policy can only be granted by the Office of Undergraduate Studies. Please complete the Repeat Waiver Request Form and follow the instructions.

Q:     What if I need to repeat a class for my major and I have already repeated four classes?

A:     Exceptions to the course repetition policy can only be granted by the Office of Undergraduate Studies. Please complete the Repeat Waiver Request Form and follow the instructions.

Q:     What happens if I repeat more than four courses?

A:     If you repeat more than four courses without permission, those illegal repeat courses will not appear on your transcript, nor will you receive credit for them toward graduation. You are still financially obligated to pay for any such courses.

Q:     Does a course I take at the university for which I have equivalent transfer credit constitute a repeat?

A:     No.  Because the course you are repeating was transferred from another institution, taking the course does not qualify as one of the four official repeats.  The consequence of taking the course, however, is that you will lose your transfer credit.

Q:     How are cross-listed courses evaluated in the repeat process?

A:     Cross-listed courses are equivalent courses.

Q:     Who can I speak with about repeating a class?

A:     You should always check with your advisor and the registrar’s office before repeating a course.