Montana State University

Retroactive University Withdrawal Policy

October 2001; Revised October 2009

A retroactive university withdrawal may be an option for students who were unable to complete a standard university withdrawal during the semester of their departure from the university. A retroactive university withdrawal is an extraordinary remedy that is available only for the reasons set forth below. Students who are granted a retroactive university withdrawal receive W grades in all courses for the semester in which they apply for the retroactive withdrawal. Requests for retroactive withdrawals must be submitted no later than three years from the last day of the semester for which the withdrawal is sought.

Students who leave the campus without applying at the Dean of Students Office for a university withdrawal during the semester of departure or who fail to withdraw through regular channels or who fail to withdraw for extraordinary reasons may apply for a retroactive university withdrawal only if they can provide evidence of the following:

  1. The student had a debilitating illness or injury that significantly limited his/her capacity to withdraw in a timely manner; or
  2. The student was forced to leave the University abruptly due to a health or safety emergency within his/her immediate family; or
  3. The student has been recommended to apply for a retroactive university withdrawal by the University Scholastic Appeals Board and meets the other criteria for a retroactive university withdrawal.

For undergraduate students:  To apply for a retroactive university withdrawal, students must submit a written request to the Dean of Students, Strand Union Building (SUB) Room 174, no later than three years after the last day of the semester for which the withdrawal is sought. The student must include his/her name and student identification number (GID), the semester for the retroactive withdrawal requested, and supporting documentation to verify claims of illness, injury or emergency which precluded the student from applying for a university withdrawal during the semester of departure.

The Dean of Students will review the written request and the documents provided and consult with appropriate administrator(s), faculty, Department Head and/or college Assistant Dean, then render a decision on the request for withdrawal.  If the request is granted, the Dean of Students will assign the official date of withdrawal and notify the student in writing.  If the request is denied, the student may further appeal in writing to the Vice President of Student Success (VPSS).  The VPSS will review the request and supporting documents and render a decision. The VPSS will notify the student of the decision in writing.  The VPSS’s decision is the final decision of the University.

For graduate students: Students enrolled in graduate degree programs and those enrolled as non-degree graduates are subject to the same parameters and must follow the same process as described above except that the written request is submitted to the Vice Provost for Graduate Education, Montana Hall Room 108.  If the request is denied, the student may further appeal to the university Provost.  The Provost’ decision is the final decision of the University.

View FAQ info sheet

Table of Contents