Brandeis University welcomes special (non-degree seeking) students who have already earned an undergraduate degree and are investigating graduate degrees, completing requirements for other degree programs or looking for exciting and challenging courses for personal or professional development. The fee for auditing courses or taking courses for credit is the same; the cost per course for the 2024-2025 academic year is $7,452. Non-degree students are not eligible for financial assistance, though they may be able to apply for some private loans.

The best mode of obtaining the course information you need is to visit the registrar's website, where you will find the most up-to-date course schedule and course descriptions. Departments are the best source of information about prerequisites that must be met for each course, as well as the days and times that classes meet. Contact information for the departments is available from university directory assistance at 781-736-2000.

Admission to any course is contingent upon: (1) the instructor's approval, (2) fulfillment of any prerequisites and (3) space availability in the course.

Registration Information

To take courses as a special student you must complete the following steps before the end of the registration period of the term in which you would like to enroll. Please note that if you are a Brandeis employee, you should not follow the steps below and should instead follow the steps on the Human Resources website.

  1. Fill out a Special Student (Non-Degree) Application. To submit the application, you will need the name and course number of the class that you would like to enroll in, as well as the name of the course instructor.
  2. Be in touch with the instructor about your interest in taking their course. Should they approve of your enrollment, ask that they email Carrie Robertson at with the approval.
  3. Provide a final undergraduate transcript with your bachelor's degree conferred. The transcript can be uploaded to the Special Student (Non-Degree) Application or sent directly to Carrie Robertson from the degree-granting institution.
  4. Pay for your course(s) in full on or before the final day of registration.

Academic Record as a Special Student

An academic record is maintained for each special student and the student's work will be graded and recorded in accordance with the prevailing policies of the Graduate School. Credit earned as a special student will be reported, at the student's request, to other institutions. The dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences may refuse to reregister any special student whose work is, in the judgment of the dean, unsatisfactory.

If you decide in the future to seek admission to a graduate program as a degree candidate, you will be doing so in competition with all other applicants for admission to that program. Admission to graduate study as a degree candidate is highly competitive. Prior status as a special student does not imply any promise of later admission as a degree candidate. If admission is gained as a degree candidate, credits earned as a special student may not necessarily apply toward the degree. Normally, no more than two courses taken for credit may be transferable if the student is admitted to a master's, doctoral or postbaccalaureate program.

International Students and Scholars

Brandeis University does not provide visa sponsorship for Special (Non-Degree) Students. For questions, please contact the International Students and Scholars Office at 781-736-3480 or at