Petitions for Retroactive Withdrawal

Q: What is a retroactive term withdrawal?

A: Any withdrawal from classes after the last day of the term.

Q: Why would I need to drop my courses after the end of a term?

A: Only the most serious circumstances warrant dropping your courses after the end of the term. This means some non-academic, extraordinary event (like a serious illness or severe personal disruption) occurred after the ninth week drop deadline of the term (four and a half weeks of a half term) that made completion of the courses very difficult or impossible. All circumstances must be fully documented including such items as a physician’s statement and instructor’s statement for each course for the petition to be considered. Students have 12 months from the beginning of the term from which they are requesting the retroactive withdrawal to submit their petition. Any petitions received after this deadline will not be considered.

Q: How will this appear on my transcript?

A: If approved, the courses for the term in question will appear as a “W” on your academic record.

Q: What is the process for petitioning?

A: You must petition to the Scholastic Standing Committee to drop a class after the end of the term

  1. Complete a Petition for Retroactive Term Withdrawal.

  2. Your petition will be reviewed by two Scholastic Standing Committee members within four weeks of the submittal, except in the Spring and Summer terms, when response time is determined by faculty availability. Scholastic Standing Committee staff will notify you of the outcome via email.

If your petition is approved, your academic record should reflect the decision within three weeks.

Keep in mind:

  • Petitions to withdraw from classes due to performance reasons will not be approved.

  • Documentation is important! If you can’t document extenuating circumstances (illness, family death, etc.), it is unlikely that your petition will be approved.

  • If you cannot obtain the signature of your instructor in person (he/she may be off campus), he/she may supply an email indicating his/her support of your petition.

  • A 12 month deadline will apply to all petitions regarding retroactive course withdrawal from previous terms.
  • Retroactive withdrawals of individual classes are rarely approved. ¬†


Submit a Petition for a Retroactive Term Withdrawal