Administrative Services

File code: PRO.WITHDRAW.POL
Approval Date: March 30, 2007
Revised: May 5, 2008
Approved By: President and Faculty Senate

Withdrawal from Courses or University Policy

A symbol W on a student's transcript indicates official withdrawal from a course. A student may withdraw from a course during the first ten weeks of a semester. After the first ten weeks, individual courses may not be dropped. For academic courses of an irregular length, the withdrawal date shall be .6 of the length of the course. This includes summer courses, first 8 week courses during the fall and spring semester, last 8 week courses during the fall and spring semester, irregularly scheduled online courses, and Independent Study Program (ISP) courses. For students who are studying abroad, the withdrawal date is the date determined by the host institution unless the student's course is directly enrolled at Western Illinois University and overseen/graded by WIU faculty in which case the .6 of the length of the course policy is in effect. It is the student's responsibility to withdraw from a class. The withdrawal deadline is 11:59 pm Central Time on the Sunday following the tenth week of a semester and 11:59 pm on the day when .6 of the length of the course has been completed for irregularly scheduled courses.

Students should withdraw by using their STARS account. If a student is unable to withdraw via STARS, the student must contact the Office of the Registrar (undergraduate students) or Graduate School (graduate students) before 4:00 pm Central Time on the Friday before the withdrawal deadline. (These offices are not available over the weekend to assist students with withdrawal problems.) In this case, the Registrar's office/Graduate School will notify the chair of the appropriate council about the student's problem, and CAGAS (for undergraduate students) or Graduate Council (for graduate students) about the student's problem, and CAGAS will determine whether the student should be withdrawn.

The inability to log into STARS to withdraw from a class is not grounds for a late withdrawal appeal. (See Academic Appeal, Withdrawal from Courses.) Students are encouraged not to wait until the last minute to withdraw from a class.

All attempts to withdraw after the deadline, unless outlined in the "Total University Withdrawal," will be denied.

If a student has been found guilty of academic dishonesty and the penalty of F (Fail) is assessed, a W cannot be granted. When a charge of academic dishonesty is pending, the instructor or source of the charge may request the Registrar to place a hold on the course(s) to prevent a withdrawal pending the outcome of the case.

Total University Withdrawal

Prior to the first day of the semester, a student may completely withdraw from the University through STARS. On or after the first day of the semester, in order to completely withdraw from the University, students who are classified as full-time students must contact Student Development and Orientation (309/298-1884) to withdraw from the University.

Under exceptional and documented circumstances, a student may request a total withdrawal from the University and receive a W for each course after the withdrawal date and before the end of the final exam period. Exceptional reasons include but are not limited to:

  1. Serious physical or mental illness so that a student is unable to attend courses for an extended period of time (more than 1 week) and complete course work;
  2. An accident that seriously injures the student so that the student is unable to attend class (more than 1 week) and complete course work; or
  3. An extreme personal issue (such as victim of serious/violent crime or death of an immediate family member) so that the student is unable to attend class (more than 1 week) and complete course work.

Poor academic performance is not considered an exceptional case.

The student's request must be submitted in writing with appropriate, supporting documentation. Undergraduate students must submit the appeal to Student Development and Orientation. Under most circumstances, the student must withdraw from all enrolled courses. If Student Development and Orientation denies the request, the student may appeal the decision to CAGAS. After the close of the semester, a student may appeal directly to CAGAS for late withdrawal.

Graduate students must submit all appeals to the Graduate Council.

Students are advised to attend classes, if possible, until a final decision is reached.