Carnegie Mellon University

Overloading Class Schedule

Overloading is defined as taking more than the equivalent of five full-semester courses, and usually means registering for more than 52 units per semester.

Qualifications for an overload for Dietrich College Students:

  • Completion of a minimum of 45 units for a letter grade with a minimum of 3.25 QPA achieved in the semester prior to the requested overload.
  • A minimum of a 3.0 cumulative QPA.
  • The total number of units (with the requested overload) is not to exceed 64 units [normal load (45-52 units) + 12 units].
    • Students can only take six courses at any one time (mini & full-semester courses).
  • Students requesting to take more than six courses at any given point in the semester or wanting to exceed 64 units must receive Assistant Dean approval.
  • First-year students and external transfer students cannot overload in their first semester in Dietrich College.
  • Students hoping to take three courses at one time in the summer must petition to carry an overload and will be evaluated using the criteria outlined above.

Eligibility does not automatically allow a student to register for more than 52 units; students must request permission to overload by:

If permission is granted on to, online processing of the unit increase is done by the academic advisor.

All petitions approved before the posting of final grades for the semester preceding the overload semester are subject to revocation if the student does not achieve a 3.25 semester QPA (or higher) and maintain a 3.0 or higher cumulative QPA. It is the student’s responsibility to discuss this matter with their academic advisor.


Dietrich College offers students a rich curriculum of courses that allow for mastery of knowledge and skill sets across its disciplines. Such mastery cannot be achieved if students are over-burdened with the demands of too many courses. The College supports an ideal of student life that allows for balanced, well-rounded maturation and development. Since we expect and encourage a broad and diverse co-curricular college experience, the College faculty agrees that limits need to be placed on how many courses a student should be allowed to take in a given semester. This policy on overloading is designed to allow our students the time for course content mastery as well as the personal reflection on and integration of knowledge that makes for successful intellectuals, professionals and citizens.