Prior to registering for classes each term, students must obtain academic advising using the procedures established by each division.
Currently enrolled students normally register in November for spring semester classes, and in April for summer term and/or fall semester classes. A schedule for academic advising and for registration can be found in the schedule of classes booklet, accessed on the World Wide Web, or obtained from the Office of Academic Records and University Registrar. New students register for classes during a new-student orientation session. The Office of Enrollment Services and Programs provides new students with information about orientation sessions and information is available online at http://www.orientation.ua.edu. Late registration is permitted until approximately one week after classes begin; there is a penalty fee for late registration.
Courses that receive inadequate registration for a given semester may be dropped from the schedule of classes before the date for enrollment confirmation and tuition payment and/or before the first week of classes.
The semester system. The academic year is divided into two semesters and one summer term. The first, or fall, semester begins in late August and ends in December. The second, or spring, semester begins in January and ends in May. The summer term consists of Interim session, two five-week summer sessions, and one ten-week summer session. The summer term begins in mid-May and ends in August. The Interim session is the first three weeks of the summer term. (The University's current academic calendar can be viewed online at www.ua.edu by first selecting "A" from the site's index and then selecting "Academic Calendar.")
Credit for courses completed is awarded in semester credit hours. The number of semester credit hours awarded for a course generally represents the number of hours that course meets each week. For instance, a 3-credit-hour course meets for three hours each week for one semester. There are exceptions to this general rule, including military science and Air Force studies courses, laboratory courses, and other courses.
Course hour load in the fall and spring. During the fall and spring semesters, the normal class hour load for a full-time undergraduate student who is not on scholastic probation is 12–17 credit hours each semester. A student who has earned at least 12 credit hours at The University of Alabama and has maintained a grade point average of "B" (3.00) or higher for all work attempted at The University of Alabama may enroll for more than 17 hours. The maximum load for which a student may enroll in one semester is 21 hours; however, an academic division may impose additional restrictions on class hour loads. The following policies also govern the class hour load during the fall and spring semesters:
- A senior who is on academic warning may enroll for a maximum of 17 credit hours during the semester in which he or she will complete degree requirements.
- A senior who is not on academic warning may enroll for a maximum of 21 credit hours during the semester in which he or she will complete degree requirements.
- The maximum load for which an entering freshman or transfer student may register during the first term at The University of Alabama is 17 hours.
Course hour load in the summer. During the summer term, the normal class hour load for undergraduate students is 6 credit hours for one five-week session, or 12 credit hours for the summer term. Undergraduate students may enroll for a maximum of 7 credit hours in each of the two summer sessions that make up the summer term. The total load in a summer term may not exceed 17 credit hours, including Interim session and 14 credit hours, including both courses that last for one summer session (five-week courses) and courses that run throughout the summer term (10-week courses). Full-time enrollment for the summer term is 12 hours.