Campus News

Check Out New Updates to UK's Spring Academic Calendar

statue of Bowman at Wildcat Alumni Plaza in the snow
Mark Cornelison | UK Photo.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 26, 2021)  The University of Kentucky’s Spring 2021 semester is underway, and now is a good time to review this semester’s academic calendar and the number of changes that were made to deal with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

In its commitment to the health and safety of students and employees, UK compressed the spring academic calendar by beginning later than usual and eliminating the traditional Spring Break week. The idea is to keep students engaged in coursework on campus, rather than potentially traveling to other regions and returning to Lexington, which would increase the risk of spreading COVID-19.

Instead of a Spring Break week, students will have an academic holiday March 26. Another major change to the academic calendar that was enacted in the fall and continues this spring affects “Dead Week” (the week prior to final examinations). Classes will meet for the first three days of that week, May 3-5, but will not meet on Thursday and Friday, May 6 and 7. Those are designated Reading Days, a time for students to prepare for final exams.

Vetted and approved by the UK Senate Council, the revised calendar is available here.

Important updates to the calendar, including updates made as recently as Jan. 25, include:

  • Friday, Jan. 29: Last day to add a class for the 2021 spring semester
  • Friday, Jan. 29: Last day to officially withdraw from the university or reduce course load and receive a full refund 
  • Friday, Feb. 5: Last day to officially withdraw from the university or reduce course load and receive an 80% refund 
  • Friday, Feb. 12: Last day to drop a course without it appearing on the student’s transcript
  • Friday, Feb. 26: Last day to officially withdraw from the university or reduce course load and receive a 50% refund
  • Friday, March 26: Academic holiday
  • Wednesday, May 5: Last day of classes
  • Thursday-Friday, May 6-7: Reading Days — classes do NOT meet
  • Friday, May 7: Last day for candidates for May 2021 degree to submit thesis/dissertation for formal review to The Graduate School
  • Monday-Thursday, May 10-13: Final examinations

For questions about changes to the academic calendar, contact the Office of the Registrar.

Keep updated on the university’s efforts related to COVID-19 at

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.