Course Registration 

How do I Add or Drop a course during the semester?

Students can add or drop a course via the portal any time prior to the add/drop deadline for each semester. Dropping a course prior to the deadline will not affect your transcript records.  After the deadline, you can add or drop a course but only once you have completed an Add/Drop form and submitted it to the Office of the Registrar for processing. Courses dropped at this stage of the semester will result in a W grade on your transcript.

The late registration periods are identified in the course schedule each semester and summer session. During this period, a student may register with the consent of the academic advisor. Beyond the late registration period, registration is permitted only under exceptional circumstances and requires the recommendation of the academic advisor, and the consent of the Registrar. Please refer to the Academic Calendar to view the late registration deadline each semester.

Students should be proactive and communicate with IT helpdesk at to install VPN access on their laptops, which will grant access to Portal when using an off-campus network. Failing to do so may result in delaying your registration, hence suspending your monthly stipend. You may email for late registration concerns, which will be addressed on case by case basis.  

You can add/drop via student portal before the deadline for each semester. However if you missed the deadline, you can fill in an add/drop form available from your Graduate Program Coordinator (GPC). Be aware that if you miss the Drop with a "W" deadline, this will show on your transcript. Always check Academic Calendar for important deadlines.

Non-KAUST students may attend courses offered at KAUST as an “Audit” upon obtaining approval from the course instructor by sending an email to the course instructor detailing why the course is of interest and how would it be beneficial. If the instructor approved it, forward that email approval to and Cc the instructor for adding the course into Blackboard.

Yes, but only within the initial add/drop deadlines. You must ensure that you stay within the Program requirements. Seek advice from your Graduate Program Coordinator (GPC) to ensure you will not drop below the minimum required credits per semester. Check the Academic Calendar for registration deadlines.

To add a course as an audit student on blackboard, please forward the instructor’s email approval to and cc the instructor.

Directed research does not appear because it is not a 'scheduled' class.

All MS and PhD are required to register for a total of 12 credits in the fall session, 12 credits in the spring session, and 6 credits in the summer session.



What is required of me as a continuing student?

To continue in KAUST beyond the first semester, the student must make satisfactory progress in fulfilling any admission conditions that were imposed, meet program requirements determined in consultation with his or her advisor, and maintain a satisfactory academic progress.

Once your internship form is approved and submitted to the Office of the Registrar, we will register you for the internship credits and you will be able to see it on your Portal account.

In your final semester of your MS, the Office of Admissions will send all graduating students an email regarding applying for the PhD via an internal application. Once you have completed your Master's degree and been accepted into the PhD program, you will then be able to enroll in doctoral courses. The Office of Admissions can further guide you through the PhD program application process.

Please refer questions regarding waiver of degree requirements to your Graduate Program Coordinator (GPC). If you do not know who your Graduate Program Coordinator (GPC) is, please contact the Office of the Registrar.

Yes. Students may be granted leave of absence in certain circumstances. If a student meets the requirements outlined in the leave policy, they may apply for leave by completing a Leave application online before the leave is required.

An approved leave of absence indicates that the student will return to KAUST at the end of the leave of absence period. A leave of absence for medical reasons requires a petition to the Registrar, supported by a physician, prior to reinstatement. A student on leave may not use any University facilities; a leave of absence does not alter the time limits for degrees or coursework.

To return from leave, students must contact the Registrar's Office for registration and Graduate Operations for housing to be re-assigned. For further details, please view the Graduate Student Leave Policy.

The Dean of Graduate Affairs may place a student on involuntary leave of absence if persuaded by the evidence that such an action is necessary for the protection of the KAUST community or for the personal safety or welfare of the student involved. Such a decision by the Dean for Graduate Affairs is subject to automatic review within seven days by the Dean of Graduate Affairs.

For more details of the leave policy, please visit the policy site and view the Graduate Student Leave Policy.

A time extension to complete your degree may be granted in certain circumstances. To determine if you are eligible for an extension, please contact your Graduate Program Coordinator (GPC) to discuss your case. If you are eligible, please obtain the Extension of Time form from your Graduate Program Coordinator (GPC), complete it, and return the form to your Graduate Program Coordinator (GPC) for processing.

Yes under certain circumstances but only after discussing this change with your Academic Advisor. If your Advisor agrees with the proposed change, you must complete the Change of Program form and returned the completed, signed form to your Graduate Program Coordinator (GPC) for processing. Please obtain the Change of Program form from your Graduate Program Coordinator (GPC).

The Office of the Registrar can provide a letter that confirms your student status at KAUST and states your monthly stipend and benefit details. This can be used for travel visa applications, bank requests and other official requirements.

To obtain an enrollment letter, please email the Office of the Registrar at RegistrarHelpDesk@KAUST.EDU.SA noting your full name and KAUST ID number. An enrollment letter will be emailed to you within two working days.

Alternatively, you can collect this letter directly from the Office of the Registrar, building 9 level 3 office 3323, upon presentation of a valid KAUST ID card.


Grades and Credits

You can appeal a grade but this must be done by the second week of the following semester. If your instructor agrees that a grade change is applicable, he/she must complete and sign the Grade Change Form and return this to your Graduate Program Coordinator (GPC) for processing. Once it's been processed, the Office of the Registrar will amend your records to reflect the new grade. See the student handbook.

Yes. Students entering with a BS or MS from another institution may transfer up to 9 credits of graduate level coursework towards the above requirements with the approval of the program Chair. A Transfer of Credit form must be completed, signed and returned to your Graduate Program Coordinator (GPC) for processing.


Student Records

What is an Unofficial Transcript and how can I get a copy of unofficial transcript?

An unofficial copy can be used for your academic performance review with your academic advisor. You can obtain a copy of your transcript through your portal. Click here for steps on how to run an unofficial transcript. 

Having your Academic Certificate on the blockchain means that your original record is always in your possession. You control how it is used. You can choose to share your Digital Academic Certificate publicly, like on a social media profile (Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.), or send your Digital Academic Certificate privately by email or text message. Finally, you can include links to your Digital Academic Certificate on your resume, public portfolio, or applications, so that people like potential employers can verify your qualifications with the click of a button.

If you have more questions about your blockchain certificate app or the issuing process, please contact us on .


As long as you have your passphrase, you can import your Digital Academic Certificate to a new app at any time and still prove it belongs to you. Just download the app from the Google Play or App Store, enter your passphrase, and import your Digital Academic Certificate.

The passphrase is also what allows you to maintain ownership of your Academic Certificate across multiple devices. So, for example, you can enter the passphrase into apps you download on your tablet or another phone, then import the same Digital Academic Certificate to those apps, too.

If you lose your passphrase, however, there is no way to prove ownership of your Academic Certificate. It’s like losing the ID that says you are who you say you are; even if you still have your Academic Certificate, you can’t prove it’s yours. If this happens, you will need to download the app again, get a new passphrase, and contact us so we can re-issue your Digital Academic Certificate to you.


Once a record is on the blockchain, it’s there forever. Your certificate may expire (if it’s time-delimited, like a license) or be revoked (if it was issued in error, or as part of a disciplinary action), but you will always have it in your possession. If it is expired or revoked, however, it will no longer verify as a valid certificate by third parties.

Your records will be sent to you by email as an attachment, so you can store them wherever you like. You can also keep them in your secure mobile app, which is designed to receive, store, and share your digital Academic Certificates. Receiving certificates is an easy, three-step process:

First, download the free mobile app.

You will receive an email from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology inviting you to download your free Blockcerts app from your phone’s App Store. Once it’s installed, it’s recommended that you copy your secure passphrase and store it somewhere safe. The passphrase lets you prove that you own your certificates if you ever delete the app or lose your phone.

Next, add King Abdullah University of Science and Technology as an issuer.

Once you have installed the app, click the link in the email to add King Abdullah University of Science and Technology as an issuer. You only need to add them once; after that, they can send you as many certificates as you earn.

Finally, add your certificate to the app.

When it’s time to receive your certificate, you will receive a second email from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology with your actual certificate attached. This file is your real blockchain certificate; you can store it wherever you store your other important data files. You can also click the link in the email to add the certificate to your app, which makes certificate sharing and online display easy.


You will receive an invitation to Download Your Blockcerts Mobile App.  After downloading the Blockcerts App and adding King Abdullah University of Science and Technology as an issuer, you will import your Academic Certificate into your certificate wallet. Each Blockcert contains the issued Academic Certificate and the evidence required to verify, so you have your complete record to share and backup.

When you own your official records, you no longer have to get original copies from the registrar every time you are applying for a new opportunity, whether that is at a school or with an employer. You can simply send your digital Academic Certificate via email or text message or paste a link to your Digital Academic Certificate in your resume or LinkedIn profile for easy verification.

A blockchain certificate can be used to verify your credentials to prospective universities and employers.  You can also publicly share your Academic Certificate with family members and friends on social or privately share via text or email using a certificate link. 

If your degree certificate is damaged or lost, you can request a replacement certificate by submitting an Application for Replacement Diploma.


No. Diplomas will not be made available to any student before commencement. If you have a specific requirement for confirming your graduation prior to the official graduation date, a letter of completion may be issued. 


The Office of the Registrar makes every effort to ensure that all information printed on the diploma is correct. Students are asked to double check the information that will be printed on the diploma and confirm its accuracy several months prior to graduation. The Office of the Registrar is not responsible for errors that occur due to student's failure to respond and confirm.

If you believe there is an error on your diploma, please contact  and your request will be reviewed by the office of the registrar. Please note that a replacement diploma may incur a replacement fee plus a courier charge.

We can’t accommodate including foreign languages and characters. The languages used for the student records are Arabic and English only.

Your legal name, not your preferred name, is what will appear on your diploma.

No, each student will receive a digital diploma in addition to one physical diploma.

You may contact the Office of the Registrar at to hold your diploma for pick-up by you or a designee, or mail your diploma to an alternative address.

If you would like for someone to collect your diploma on your behalf, you and send the contact details and cc'ing your diploma collector, who must be a KAUST community member with a valid KAUST ID.


Diplomas are issued at the Commencement ceremony which is held in December. Diplomas will be presented to all applicable students. If you have graduated but do not attend the ceremony, you can collect your diploma in the week following commencement from the Office of the Registrar.

Spring graduates will receive their diplomas from the office of the registrar after the official graduation date.

For students who have already left campus, the Office of the Registrar will arrange for the diploma to be sent by a courier to your address after the commencement ceremony.

Yes. You can request the latest version of your transcript from the Office of the Registrar at any time. For external requirements a stamped official transcript can be provided.

An unofficial transcript is printed on plain paper and is usually used for internal use or student's reference. An official transcript is printed on special watermarked security paper.



How Soon Should I exit KAUST after Graduation?

Graduated students should exit KAUST within seven days after the completion date unless otherwise agreed. This does not apply to MS/Ph.D. students who will continue their Ph.D. after their MS graduation. Also, your access to the portal will be removed in 14 days.

If you have any questions, please contact the Graduate Affairs Operations team at


Yes, Students must submit an application for graduation to ensure they are identified as graduation candidates.

If you miss this deadline, contact Office of the Registrar at as soon as possible to find out what to do next.

Yes, Submit an Application for Graduation even if you don’t plan on participating in the commencement ceremony.

Yes, Should you need proof of graduation for an employer or another school before you receive your diploma, you can obtain a completion letter by sending a request by an email to Your diploma should be used as a proof of graduation once received.

MS/Ph.D. students planning to withdraw from their Ph.D. and leave KAUST after graduating with MS should email to request the withdrawal from KAUST form.   



If I apply for graduation, am I registered to attend the commencement ceremony?

No. In order to participate in a fall commencement ceremony, you must:

  1. Be on the “eligible graduation list” prior to commencement registration deadline in October. The “eligible graduation list” is managed by the Office of the Registrar, once your graduation application is approved, your name will be added to the graduation candidates list and the commencement team will be notified.
  2. Complete the separate commencement registration by the defined deadline.

The commencement team is notified by the Office of the Registrar in early fall of all students who are on the “eligible graduation list”.  All students on this list will receive an email inviting them to register for the commencement ceremony.  Any student who does not complete a commencement registration by the deadline will not be allowed to participate in commencement. 

All information regarding Commencement is sent to eligible graduate's KAUST email address by the commencement team.  Students will only receive Commencement information once a student has applied to graduate with the Registrar’s Office and their application was approved.

No. Graduates are only eligible to participate in the year in which they graduate. If you are unable to attend the ceremony, please contact the commencement team for advice.

Your application for graduation is processed by the office of the registrar. This is a separate process from providing your RSVP or registration to participate in commencement events.

Master with thesis and Doctoral candidates who have completed the defense examination with either a “pass” or “conditional pass” may participate in the Commencement Ceremony. They will officially graduate during the cycle in which they complete their remaining degree requirements.

No. You must pass your defense and submit your result form by the deadline to be allowed to participate in the commencement.



MS Thesis candidates who have completed all of the course work for the MS degree, but not the Thesis, may participate in Commencement Ceremony, but will not graduate until the Thesis is completed. Make sure to submit a graduation application to ensure including your name in the commencement list.

You must pass your defense and have your result form submitted to the Office of the Registrar by the deadline to be allowed to participate in the commencement. 



Contact Info

How can I contact the Office of the Registrar?

All queries can be sent to the Office of the Registrar Helpdesk – RegistrarHelpDesk@KAUST.EDU.SA. You will receive a reply within 1 working day. Emails must be sent from your KAUST email address. 

Telephone: Please phone 012 808 0505. Phone assistance is available Sunday to Thursday, 8am – 5pm.

In person: You are welcome to visit the Office of the Registrar, located in Building 9, level 3, office 3323. We are open Sunday to Thursday, 8am – 5pm.