What are the requirements for course registration? How do we register for courses?

All 1st and 2nd year PhD students are required to take courses and must register through MyAccess. To be registered for full-time study, students must enroll in at least 3 three-credit courses per semester; these can include directed readings, courses in other departments, and courses taken through the Consortium with other DC-area universities. The list of available Georgetown courses can be viewed here.

Typically, you will need to enroll in 4 three-credit courses a semester to complete the departmental course requirements. Students with transfer/advanced standing credit may enroll in fewer courses per semester.

What is the registration process for students taking fewer than 3 courses?

If you are taking fewer than nine credits (three courses) any semester during the first two years in the program, you should register for Govt 9999-03, “Thesis Research.” This will allow you to retain full-time enrollment status, and continue to receive all benefits (including maintaining your student visa status, if applicable).

How can you register to do a tutorial with a faculty member?

Students who wish to register for a reading or research tutorial must work with a tutorial instructor (who will typically be a tenure-line faculty member in the Government Department, but may be other faculty at Georgetown) to draw up a syllabus for the course, including a title, schedule of meetings and reading assignments, and identification of what form of written work will be completed. Either the student or instructor must then contact the DGS to approve the tutorial, and complete the registration form. This form must be completed and submitted by the DGS no later than the final day of the Add/Drop period.

Enrollment through the Consortium

If you are interested in taking a class using the Consortium option, please follow the instructions using this link. Be sure to register as soon as possible as the PhD program does not have any jurisdiction on the registration of a peer university. Please also be advised that, while it is advisable to complete the registration process early (given the lag time involved in processing applications), there is no guarantee that you will be registered in the consortium course by the beginning of the semester, since the Consortium Office must coordinate these enrollments with the registrar offices at the partner university. Please send any questions to

What is the registration process after coursework is completed?

Usually at the start of the 3rd year in the PhD program, the 48 credits requirement should be complete. As a result, you will have to be register in “Thesis Research” to remain enrolled full-time and maintain all benefits. This can be done by registering for GOVT 9999-01 at the beginning of the 3rd year. Starting the semester after, the graduate school will automatically enroll in you “Thesis Research”. However, to avoid any issues be sure to check your registration at the beginning of the semester.