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Athabasca University


3.6.6 Grouped Study Courses

Grouped study courses re those courses taken by students together in either a classroom (usually at a collaborating institution) or in an online environment with common deadlines for completion of course activities. Students progress through the course at the same pace. Because grouped study courses follow a set time frame, extensions are not allowed.

Not all courses identified as grouped study in the syllabi are available every year. It is important that you check to confirm the course is available at a specific location.

To determine whether there is a grouped study course available to you, or for more information about partnership courses, degrees, and transfer credit, please refer to the following websites: Maximum Course Load

Students may be actively registered in one to six courses at a time. To ensure that you do not overburden yourself, AU limits your course load to a maximum of six active registrations at a time. Collaborating institutions may have additional limits to course load that you must also follow. Registration Process – Grouped Study

Once you are admitted to AU and you have received your student ID number, you may register in courses. When you have selected a grouped study course, ensure that it is available in grouped study, by viewing the available delivery modes in the online course syllabus, or by visiting the Classroom-based Study (Grouped Study) page. Also ensure you have the required prerequisites.

You will register in person at the partner institution that offers the AU course or use the grouped study course registration form specific to the institution at which the course is being offered. Registration Deadlines

Year-round registration is not available for grouped study courses. Because of scheduling restrictions, the courses are generally offered at selected sites and times. Course availability is dependent upon the number of registrations. Courses offered at another institution may have different fees and regulations. Please consult the collaborating institution that offers the course. Grouped Study Contract Periods/Dates

Each grouped study course has a specific course contract start date and end date. The contract period is usually two, four, or six months in length and is determined before the beginning of the course. The exam date is shared with students within the first week of classes. Course extensions are not available for grouped study courses. Learning Resources

The payment of course registration fees entitles you to receive most of your grouped study course learning resources. Learning resources include, but are not limited to, textbooks, student manuals, study guides, instructor assistance where provided, access to online materials and other instructional materials required to complete the course for the period of active registration. Additional lab fees may be required for some Faculty of Science courses. You may be required to pay for additional small items such as binders, calculators, home lab materials and so on.

Some AU courses introduce students to a more specialized course in the same field. These courses often reference the same textbook. Please retain the textbook from the previous course as a duplicate textbook will not be shipped.

Your course package will include various learning resources that are identified in the online course syllabus. In some courses, the learning resources are available entirely online. In others, the resources may be a combination of offline materials such as textbook(s), CDs, and/or DVDs, and the balance of the course is accessed online. And in others, the entire learning resources package is print-based and in provided to grouped study students on the first day of class. Course Withdrawal – Grouped Study

You may withdraw from a grouped study course before your course contract period expires. In order to meet specific academic record and refund criteria, however, you must adhere to specific timelines described in this section. You cannot withdraw from a grouped study course after your contract end date, once the final exam is deemed to have been written (or if all course work is deemed to have been submitted for marking, for courses that do not have a final exam requirement), or during disciplinary proceedings.

a. Impact of Course Withdrawal on Academic Record

Withdrawal timeframes have an impact on your academic record. If you withdraw:

  1. prior to and up to 15 days after the course contract start date: The course will not appear on the transcript.
  2. after 15 days and on or before the course contract end date: Your transcript will indicate a “W” (Withdrawal) and credit will not be awarded for the course.
  3. after the course contract end date: You cannot withdraw after the course contract end date. If no course work has been completed, a grade of “F” (Failure) will be assigned and recorded on the transcript.

Nursing students: Please consult the Undergraduate Course Withdrawal and Refund Policy – Grouped Study for academic impact of a withdrawal from a nursing clinical and for the process that must be followed.

b. Procedure

All requests to withdraw from a grouped study course must be made by completing and submitting Grouped Study Course Withdrawal Request Form in writing to the Office of the Registrar.

The date you withdraw from your course will be the postmark on the envelope, the date the emailed submission is received, or the University date stamp if the form is hand-delivered or faxed (780.675.6174).

c. Refunds

For information on refunds, refer to Refunds: Grouped Study Course Tuition. Re-Registration – Grouped Study

At Athabasca University, students are permitted one registration and one re-registration in each course. You may re-register in an undergraduate course provided you are eligible to register in the current revision of the course and that you have not previously re-registered in the course. You cannot re-register in a course that has been temporarily or permanently closed.

Students in grouped study courses cannot carry forward coursework when they are re-registering.

a. Procedure

  1. You must re-register in the current revision of the course. Contact AU and determine whether the current revision of the course has changed since your original registration. If the current revision has changed from your original registration, you will be required to pay the learning resources fee.
  2. Complete the undergraduate course registration process using one of the following methods:
    • online (also available via print PDF)
    • complete and submit the Undergraduate Course Registration Form. Fax: 1.780.675.6174 or mail.
    • c. in person at the Athabasca, Edmonton, or Calgary offices.


Information effective Sept. 1, 2017 to Aug. 31, 2018.

Updated April 04 2018 by laurab

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