What is administrative withdrawal?

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Instructors have until Oct. 10 to submit for administrative withdrawal. Photo by Getty Images

Undergraduate students who have already missed most of a class this semester may get an email about administrative withdrawal. It's a university policy that allows instructors to drop students because they have missed more than half of class attendance or activities in the first 25% of the course.

Instructors have until Oct. 10 to submit for administrative withdrawal for full session courses, and students will officially be dropped Oct. 11. If you are impacted, you'll be informed over email.

"It is to help students, so they don't get stuck in a situation where they haven't been participating in a class and finish the semester with F's," said Laura Masterson, managing director of University College Academic and Career Development. "It's to prevent that worst-case scenario."

If you are withdrawn from a class this way, you will get a 'W' on your transcript. It doesn't hurt your GPA but could affect other things like financial aid.

"It has the potential to drop a student below full time and could count against satisfactory academic progress, which financial aid looks at to see if a student is eligible," Masterson said.

She said there are a few things students should do if notified for administrative withdrawal:

  • Look at your syllabus to see if administrative withdrawal is being used in your class.
  • Talk with your instructor about the absences or missing work. Instructors can cancel the administrative withdrawal request and allow you to continue.
  • Check with financial aid or your advisor to see how dropping a course will affect you.

No tuition reimbursement is given for administrative withdrawn classes.