Leave of Absence, Withdrawals and Dismissals

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Leave of Absence

Typically, a graduate student may apply for a leave of absence of no more than two long semesters. Requests for a leave of absence must be recommended by your faculty adviser to your program area's Area Chair, who will send a leave of absence request to the Graduate Advisor (including details regarding duration and reason for the leave), who will then notify the Dean of Graduate Studies. 

If a student has been admitted to candidacy for a doctoral degree, the GSC Executive Committee and Dean of Graduate Studies must also approve a leave of absence. The Dean of Graduate Studies approves such leaves of absence only in rare and unusual circumstances. In-candidacy students who leave the University without an approved leave of absence must reapply for admission and, if admitted, must pay for all semesters of dissertation missed during the leave.

Paperwork must be received by the Graduate School office no later than a week prior to the beginning of classes, or the student will have to pay the regular readmission application fee.  

A student on leave of absence may not use University facilities or receive advice from any member of the faculty. A student who is on leave of absence (or not registered for some other reason) cannot gather data for research.

Withdrawing from a Program

Students also have the option to voluntarily withdraw from a program. Students who drop their entire course load by definition withdraw from the University for the semester.

To withdraw from the Graduate School, the student must file a Withdrawal and Refund Request form. Requests for withdrawal must be accompanied by an acknowledgement from the department’s Graduate Adviser. This form may be obtained by the Graduate School or by contacting the EDP Graduate Coordinator. Students may withdraw through the last class day of a semester.

Note: Medical Withdrawals are initiated with University Health Services.

See the Graduate School’s page on Withdrawals for more information about policies.

Academic Warning, Dismissal, and Termination

Registration in the Graduate School beyond the first semester or summer session depends on three factors:

  1. satisfactory progress in absolving any admission conditions;
  2. maintenance of a GPA of at least 3.0 in all graduate coursework; and 
  3. approval of the student’s GSC.

A graduate student whose GPA falls below 3.0 will be warned by the Graduate School. The student must attain a satisfactory GPA during the subsequent semester or be subject to termination. The student may not drop a course or withdraw from a course during this period without approval of the Graduate Advisor and Graduate Dean.

Unless the course is only offered Credit/No Credit (CR/NC), EDP students must pass all courses used to satisfy degree requirements with a letter grade of B- or better. Make sure you are signed up for the correct grade option (CR/NC or Letter Grade) when you register for courses, as having to repeat a course can be costly and delay graduation.

In general, if a student's performance is below the expectations of the program area, either academically or behaviorally, the student can be placed on probation through written documentation outlining all the problems, the processes and deadlines by which the probation may be removed, as well as the final recourse should satisfactory progress not be achieved by the deadlines.

The GSC may recommend termination to the Dean of Graduate Studies if a student is not making satisfactory progress. You should contact your program Area Chair to learn what constitutes satisfactory academic progress in your program.