Cross-Registration Instructions for RISD students at Brown

*The cross-registration process cannot be started until the first day of the Brown term that you intend to register in*

  • The cross-registration process will be managed remotely via electronic forms.
  • RISD students may cross-register at Brown in Fall and/or Spring.
  • RISD students are expected to attend Brown courses in-person.
  • First-year students are not allowed to cross-register as they are already registered in a full schedule at RISD. If there are any concerns, please contact the Experimental and Foundation Studies division directly.

Important information to note:

  • Cross-registration for RISD students to register at Brown begins on the first day of Brown’s semester and must be completed by the end of Brown’s Add/Drop period or RISD’s Add/Drop period (whichever is earlier). Forms will no longer be available after the deadline.
    • For Fall 2023: The Brown fall semester begins on September 6, 2023. RISD’s Add/Drop period ends September 13, 2023. 
      • Cross-registration with Brown will close at 5:00PM on September 13, 2023.
    • For Spring 2024: The Brown spring semester begins on January 24, 2024 and their Add/Drop period ends February 6, 2024 (before RISD’s spring semester).
      • Cross-registration with Brown will close at 5:00PM on February 6, 2024.
  • RISD students must receive prior approval from either the Division of Liberal Arts (for Liberal Arts credit) or their Department Head (for Major, Non-Major, or Graduate Elective credit) in order to cross-register. This will be conducted using an electronic RISD cross-registration pre-approval form. Only Brown courses accepted for RISD credit (pre-approved by the Division of Liberal Arts or the student’s Department Head) will be registered.
  • RISD students must obtain permission from the Brown instructor before filling out Brown’s online cross-registration form request.

RISD students who wish to cross-register at Brown should take the following steps:

  1. RISD student uses Courses@Brown ( to find the Brown course they wish to take. Note, although some courses at Brown are designated as ‘accessible to remote students’, RISD students are expected to attend Brown courses in-person. 
  2. RISD student completes RISD’s Prior Approval for Brown University Credit (FORM NOT AVAILABLE UNTIL FIRST DAY OF BROWN’s SEMESTER) electronic form to receive pre-approval from the RISD Division Dean or Department Dean, as appropriate, to secure permission to take the Brown course for RISD credit.
  3. RISD student contacts the Brown instructor via email for permission to take the Brown course.
  4. Once permission has been secured on the RISD pre-approval and by the Brown instructor, then (and only then), complete the Brown Cross Registration Request Form here (FORM NOT AVAILABLE UNTIL FIRST DAY OF TERM). This form will be available starting on the first day of the Brown term and will close on the deadline.
  5. When the form is completed, the Brown Registrar’s Office will confirm the permissions with the RISD Registrar and the Brown instructor. Once they have been confirmed, the Brown Registrar’s office will work with the RISD Registrar’s office to get the student registered for the course. Note: Brown will not process any registration request they receive without indication from the RISD Registrar’s Office that the RISD Prior Approval process has been completed.



  • Credits: Brown University courses taken by RISD students will be recorded by RISD as three credit courses. Performance based courses at Brown (MUSC, TAPS, etc) are only 1/2 credit courses at Brown and will be recorded as 1.5 credits at RISD (ie: voice/instrument lessons and any ensemble groups, etc).
  • Language Course Information – Details regarding language courses at Brown
  • RISD students are not allowed to cross-register for Med School courses at Brown (BIOL courses at the 3000 level or higher)
  • RISD students are allowed to take independent study options at Brown (ISP), and registration follows the same procedure as any other cross-registration. Note, some Brown departments have additional forms associated with the ISP that must be completed prior to cross-registration.

Deadlines: As a RISD student, you are governed by RISD academic deadlines for any registration changes.

  • Course Drops: If you decide to drop a Brown course, you must submit the RISD Course Drop Form (available in Etrieve) by the end of RISD’s add/drop deadline.
  • Course Withdrawals: Although Brown allows their students to drop courses until the last day of classes, this policy does not apply to RISD students. Any RISD students who need to drop a Brown course must notify both Brown and RISD. Courses dropped after RISD’s add/drop deadline will be processed as course withdrawals (with a grade of W). See RISD’s policy on maintaining good academic standing here. RISD students must earn/complete 12 or more credits each semester to remain in good academic standing. Course withdrawals and grades of NC (no credit) in Brown courses do not count as completed credits.

Cross Registration Policy:

  • RISD’s cross-registration policy with Brown University is available here.
  • RISD students selecting grading options at Brown is available here.

Brown Campus Map (Brown’s website)