Academic Policies and Procedures

Leave of Absence

The Graduate School does not have a formal policy on leave of absence for pre-dissertators. Students should notify their graduate program of their intention to take a leave of absence. 

If students have pre-enrolled for a future term and plan to take a leave of absence, they must be sure to drop all courses before the first day of class.

Previously enrolled students who wish to return to Graduate School should follow the instructions for Readmission to Graduate School. Any student who does not enroll for a fall or spring term is considered to be a reentry and must pay the Graduate School online application fee. Any student granted readmission must adhere to the most current requirements as listed in the Graduate School Academic Policies & Procedures. Master’s degree students who have been absent for five or more consecutive years lose all credits that they have earned before their absence. Doctoral degree students who have been absent for ten or more consecutive years lose all credits that they have earned before their absence. Individual programs may count the coursework students completed prior to their absence for meeting program requirements; however that coursework will not count toward Graduate School credit requirements.

Non-dissertators: The Graduate School has no formal policy regarding a leave of absence at the pre-dissertator level, although some programs do. Therefore, it is critical that students contact their major programs before considering a break in enrollment of one or more terms.

Dissertators: A candidate for a doctoral degree should be aware that failure to take the final oral examination and submit the dissertation within 5 years after passing the preliminary examination may require another preliminary examination and admittance to candidacy a second time. In addition, the Graduate School requires all dissertators to maintain continuous enrollment. In rare circumstances when this is not possible, a degree completion fee is assessed to recognize the inevitable use of university facilities (including faculty and staff time) up to and including the successful defense of the dissertation.

International Students: International students considering a leave of absence should check on their visa status with International Student Services.

Graduate Appointments: Students with Teaching Assistantships (TA), Program Assistantships (PA), or Research Assistantships (RA) should consult with their program, their PI and/or advisor. Students with Fellowships or Traineeships should contact their funding source.

See Degree Completion Fee, Family Leave, International Students Maintaining Legal Status, Readmission to Graduate School (for previously enrolled graduate students), Time Limits

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