Authorized Withdrawal

Sometimes medical or compassionate circumstances can compromise your academic performance in course(s) during a term. If so, you may wish to request an Authorized Withdrawal (AW) for the course(s) in that term. An AW, if granted, removes the course entirely from your official academic transcript. If you are granted an AW within a year of taking the course, you may also be eligible for a tuition fee refund from the Registrar's office.  The tutorials and guide below can help you get started on process. 

Step 1:
If you are seeking Authorized Withdrawals (AW's) from course(s) you are currently registered in, the first step is to make certain that you do not want to continue in the course(s). If that is the case, then you should Voluntarily Withdraw (VW) from the courses on or before the VW deadline.

Speak with a student advisor in your faculty of registration to discuss your situation and to find out if there is a specific process or deadline for making an AW request. You can also review the Academic Calendar for specific policy information.

Step 2: 
Complete authorized withdrawal request form (available here) and prepare a letter (see outline for assistance) explaining how your circumstances or symptoms affected your ability to be academically successful in your courses.

Note: You must explain how your academic performance in coursework was affected by those circumstances.

If you have questions or would like assistance in preparing your AW request, you can make an appointment with a Student Advocate.

Step 3:
Obtain supporting documentation. 
Some examples include a physician, counsellor or psychologist's note, an obituary or funeral program, or any other official documentation supporting your extenuating circumstances. AW requests will not be granted without supporting documentation. Please refer to the "Guidelines for Health Care Professionals" handout which explains the information that needs to be contained in supporting documentation. This handout can be given to your doctor or other health care professional to advise them of the details that needs to be included in the letter. 

Examples of supporting documents include:

  1. Funeral program and/or obituary,
  2. Letter from a physician (general practioner, specialist or surgeon),
  3. Letter from a counsellor, psychologist or other mental health professional
  4. Police report or auto accident report,
  5. Travel receipts (airline, rail etc.).

Step 4:
Submit your letter and supporting documentation to a student advisor in your faculty of registration. Your request will then be considered by the Director/Dean of your Faculty. Be sure to keep a copy of your entire submitted package for your own records.