Repeating a Course

State laws now affect your course repetition options at Foothill College. Unless exceptions are specifically indicated in course descriptions in the current Foothill College Course Catalog, state regulations prohibit you from repeating a course you completed with a grade of C or better.

Depending on the number of drops with Ws and substandard grades (D, F, NP) you have earned, you may be blocked from registration and will need to see a counselor to complete the petition to request permission to repeat a course.

After Two Attempts

If you have made two attempts for the same class and have not successfully completed the class with a satisfactory grade (including a W) you will not be able to register again for the class without first filling out the Third Attempt Release Form and submitting it to the Admissions and Records Office. Please read the form carefully before submitting it to the office.

If you enroll for a third time into the class, you must know that this is the last time you will be allowed to enroll in this class. If you no longer plan on completing this class, you must drop the class by the add deadline. If you remain in the class after the add date, you will receive a letter grade for the class and not a W grade. Please plan your quarter schedule accordingly. If you are unsuccessful in the class for a third time, then you must take the class outside of the Foothill-DeAnza District.

If your two attempts include Ws, MyPortal will block your third attempt to register for the course. You will be required to see the Admissions and Records Office for review/override. If you withdraw a third time, your instructor will be notified to assign a grade.

After Three Attempts

Permission to enroll in a course beyond three times will only be granted due to documented extenuating circumstances, significant lapse of time (5 years) and legally mandated for training/employment.

For more information, continue reading or click on a link below to skip to a section.

Course Repetition and Withdrawal Policy Petition Process
Course Repetition Examples Frequently Asked Questions

See our Course Repetition Policy for information about repeating a course for which a satisfactory grade has been received.

Course Repetition and Withdrawal Title 5 Policy

The California Community College Board of Governors recently passed revisions to Title 5 regarding course repetition that will take effect in the 2012 summer quarter. Students may enroll in a course only three (3) times if they received a substandard grade (D, F, NP or NC) or withdrew from the class with a "W".

Only students with extenuating circumstances may seek approval to enroll in a course for the fourth time through the Admissions and Records petition process. Students need to complete the Course Repeat Petition to Enroll in Course for a Fourth Time (ver. 9/26/2012) and submit this completed form, attach a copy of their unofficial transcript and relevant documentation to the Office of the Vice President of Student Services.

The maximum number of times a student may enroll in the same credit course is THREE (3) times.

  • A student may only take a class three (3) times through a combination of substandard grades (D, F, NP or NC) and withdrawals (W) on his/her student record.
  • If a student, through a combination of substandard grades (D, F, NP or NC) and withdrawals (W), wishes to take a class for the fourth time, s/he must submit a Course Repeat Petition to the Office of the Vice President of Student Services. Petitions will only be approved based on significant lapse of time (5 years), extenuating circumstances, or is required by a legally mandated training/employment program.
  • Military Withdrawals do not count in terms of repetition restrictions, nor do withdrawals that occur due to fire or flood (Title 5 Sections 55024 and 58509).
  • This rule does not contain a grandfather clause. If a student has already reached the maximum number of course repetitions, s/he cannot enroll in the class again within the Foothill-De Anza Community College District.
Please keep these changes in mind as you plan your course schedule. If you need support, you are encouraged to see a counselor or participate in the array of student support services and tutoring available on campus.
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Petition Process

Students may submit a Course Repeat Petition to Admissions and Records for a fourth attempt only if there were extenuating *circumstances, a significant lapse of time since the course was taken, or the course is required by a legally mandated training/employment program.

Petitions are available in the Admissions and Records office or you may download the form online. Students are required to provide documentation of the extenuating circumstances or other allowable circumstance with their petitions. Petitions are reviewed on a case-by-case basis and are not automatically approved. If students' petitions are not approved, they will need to retake the course at another community college if permitted.

* Extenuating Circumstances are defined as documented cases of accidents, illnesses or other circumstances beyond the control of the student that necessitate extended absences for a course(s).
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Course Repetition Examples
Scenarios
The following scenarios will help demonstrate this change and how it may affect you.

  Scenario A
No. Course Grade Quarter Term Is Course Repeatable?
1 MATH-104 D Spring 2010 Yes
2 MATH-104 F Fall 2010 Yes
3 MATH-104 W Spring 2011 Yes
4 MATH-104 Summer 2012 No, must petition

  Scenario B
No. Course Grade Quarter Term Is Course Repeatable?
1 EWRT-1A W Spring 2008 Yes
2 EWRT-1A W Fall 2008 Yes
3 EWRT-1A D Winter 2009 Yes
4 EWRT-1A Fall 2012 No, must petition

  Scenario C
No. Course Grade Quarter Term Is Course Repeatable?
1 EWRT-1A W Spring 2008 Yes
2 EWRT-1A W Fall 2008 Yes
3 EWRT-1A W Winter 2009 Yes
4 EWRT-1A Fall 2012 No, must petition
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Course Repetition Frequently Asked Questions
  1. How will this new regulation affect me?
    The new regulation will only allow students THREE (3) attempts to successfully complete a course. If the student fails to receive a passing grade after three attempts, s/he may petition in order to try one (1) more time.
  2. I already took a course 3 times. Does this mean I have to petition in order to take the same course again?
    Yes, you must submit a Course Repeat Petition to Enroll in a Course for a Fourth Time in order to take a class one more time. Students must meet specific criteria in order to take the course one additional time.
  3. How do I find out if I took a class 3 times already?
    The best way is to check your academic history on MyPortal. If the course you wish to repeat is listed in your academic history, it counts as an attempt.
  4. What are the criteria to take a class the fourth time?
    Students must demonstrate one or more of the following:
    1. The student was not able to complete the course the third time due to extenuating circumstances; (accidents, illnesses or other circumstances beyond the control of the student that necessitate extended absences for a course).
    2. A significant lapse of time has occurred since the student last took the course.
    3. The student needs to complete the course for a legally mandated training for employment purposes.
  5. What happens if I already took a class four times?
    You cannot take the course again within the Foothill-De Anza Community College District.
  6. If I am allowed to take the class a fourth time, can I drop or withdraw from the class if I am not earning a passing grade?
    You may drop the class if you do so before the drop deadline. However, you may not withdraw after this deadline and will be required to complete the class regardless of your academic performance and you will receive a letter grade for the course.
  7. I was forced to withdraw from a class due to military orders, does this count as an attempt?
    No, withdrawals due to active duty military orders are considered a military withdrawal and do not count as one of the three attempts.
  8. What if I don't understand any of this information?
    Before you decide to drop, withdraw from or repeat a class, discuss it with either a counselor or academic advisor. Always consider the consequences before removing yourself from a class.
  9. Will repeating a course affect my financial aid eligibility?
    Yes, you need to consult with Financial Aid staff before changing your course plans. This is particularly important if you plan to withdraw from a class or intend to repeat the course.
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