Withdrawals & Leaves of Absence

Withdrawals 

Withdrawing means you’ve dropped all courses for an entire semester, or you've left the University. 

However, simply dropping courses on MyUAlbany, not attending your classes or canceling your on-campus housing or meal plan does not constitute an official withdrawal.

If you decide to formally withdraw from your program at UAlbany, you must drop all courses on MyUAlbany and notify the Graduate School by submitting the Graduate Program Withdrawal Request.

Please note that students who withdraw from the University lose access to services and privileges available to enrolled students. 

Visit the Graduate Bulletin for more information on program withdrawals.
 

Academic Records

Please visit the Academic Calendar for a list of course withdrawal deadlines. 

Students who withdraw from a course before the end of the program adjustment period (also known as the add/drop period) will have the course registration deleted from their records. 

Students who withdraw from a course after the program adjustment period and up through the course withdrawal deadline will have a grade of W (withdrawn).  

Students cannot withdraw after the course withdrawal deadline without the approval of the Graduate School Dean. 

Appeal for an Exception to the Course Withdrawal Deadline

Students seeking to late drop or withdraw from a course due to extenuating circumstances can submit a Graduate Request for Exception to Course Withdrawal Deadline.   

When the student submits an appeal electronically using the form linked above, a copy is automatically submitted to the course instructor for feedback and approval. 

Appeals must include information about the extenuating circumstance and why it prevented the student from dropping the course by the deadline. Visit the Academic Calendar for a list of course withdrawal deadlines. 

Students must have been making satisfactory academic progress before the extenuation circumstances occurred. Appeals based solely on poor performance will not be considered. 

The student will be notified via their UAlbany email after a decision is made. 

Approved appeals require an administrative fee, which must be paid before the withdrawal can be processed. Instructions for paying the fee will be included in the notification email. 

These appeals do not affect tuition liability; students who are granted appeals to late withdraw from courses are still financially liable for the course.

Readmission

A graduate student who has withdrawn or is no longer active in their program but wants to continue their studies must submit a new graduate admissions application. 

Once the Graduate School receives the completed application, it is reviewed by their academic department. 

Please note that previous admissions decisions do not guarantee readmission for future study. 

Visit our Apply to a Degree or Certificate Program page for application instructions. 

Financial Liability

If a student withdraws before completing at least 60% of the academic term, a portion of their federal Title IV aid — which includes federal loans — may be returned to the appropriate aid program. If aid is returned, they may still owe a balance to the University.  

If you officially withdraw from the University or reduce the number of credits for which you’re registered by dropping a course without swapping it with another, you may be entitled to an adjustment of charges or a refund of payments you have already made. If you would like to submit an appeal, please complete the Tuition Appeal Request.

Visit Student Financial Services’ page on Financial Liability for Dropping Courses or Withdrawing for more information.

Students who have dropped or withdrawn from courses and are seeking an exception to the SUNY tuition policy will need to submit an appeal to the Tuition Appeals Committee. Information regarding exceptions to the SUNY tuition policy can be found on the Student Financial Services' page on Financial Liability for Dropping Courses or Withdrawing.  

Medical Withdrawals 

Students who need to withdraw from a semester for medical reasons can submit a Medical Withdrawal Form. Medical withdrawals are for the full semester’s registration and cannot be granted for individual courses.

Students seeking permission to late drop or withdraw from individual courses can submit an appeal for an exception to the course withdrawal deadline. Please see the "Appeal for an Exception to the Course Withdrawal Deadline" section above for instructions.

Please note that students who withdraw from the University lose access to services and privileges available to enrolled students. 

Visit the Graduate Bulletin for more information on medical withdrawals.
 

Medical Records

A graduate student — or, where appropriate, their legal guardian or authorized representative — may initiate the medical withdrawal process by presenting information about a disabling medical condition to the Graduate School. 

Student Health Services, Counseling & Psychological Services or the Office of the Vice President of Student Affairs may also initiate the medical withdrawal process. 

Supporting medical documentation, as well as documentation of the withdrawal, will be transferred and stored in the student's medical record in Student Health Services or Counseling & Psychological Services. 

If the University official reviewing a student’s Medical Withdrawal Form has questions about the conditions or circumstances, the request will be referred to Student Health Services or Counseling & Psychological Services so the appropriate licensed practitioner can review the documentation.

Financial Liability for Medical Withdrawal

Medical withdrawals effective on or before the mid-semester point may qualify the student for tuition and fees adjustment for the term of withdrawal.  

However, if a student withdraws before completing at least 60% of the academic term, a portion of their federal Title IV aid — which includes federal loans — may be returned to the appropriate aid program. If aid is returned, they may still owe a balance to the University.  

Visit Student Financial Services’ page on Financial Liability for Dropping Courses or Withdrawing for more information. 

Reentry

Students seeking reentry after a medical withdrawal must provide documentation of the reason for withdrawal, treatment outcome and their preparedness to return to the University.  

This documentation will be provided by the student, physician or other licensed health care practitioner or facility to Student Health Services or Counseling & Psychological Services.  

Student Health Services and Counseling & Psychological Services reserves the right to make an independent evaluation of a student's readiness to return to the University.

Leaves of Absence 

Doctoral students are required to maintain continuous registration. However, a doctoral student is eligible to apply for a leave of absence before reaching doctoral candidacy and/or registering for dissertation credits. 

Note: Master’s and certificate students are not required to maintain continuous registration, so they don’t need to apply for a leave of absence. However, master’s and certificate students must complete their degree requirements within six years.

A doctoral leave may be proposed for an appropriate academic or personal reason and will be subject to the approval of the student’s department, school or college and the Graduate School Dean. 

To initiate this process, please complete and submit a Request for Leave of Absence from Graduate Study form

A doctoral leave of absence is normally granted for a period of up to one year. Multiple leaves may be granted up to a combined maximum of four semesters. 

The period of authorized leave is not counted as part of the statute of limitations for completion of degree requirements. 

Students granted a leave are not expected to be progressing toward the completion of their degree requirements during the leave period. 

During periods of approved leave, students cannot engage in program-related independent research or analysis, work with faculty, take exams or make use of University facilities only available to students. 

 

Late Registration 

Confirmation from the instructor is required before a course can be added to a graduate student’s record after the drop/add period has ended.  

Faculty members can download the “Late Add/Registration Request — Graduate Only” form on MyUAlbany and should complete the information on departmental letterhead. 

Completed and signed forms should be submitted to the Registrar’s Office

The student will be charged a late registration fee or late add fee, depending on the registration transaction.