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Medical and Compassionate Withdrawal Request


Medical and Compassionate Withdrawal Requests

A medical or compassionate withdrawal request may be submitted in extraordinary cases that prevent a student from continuing classes, and when an incomplete or other arrangements with instructors are not possible. All applications for withdrawal require thorough and credible documentation for the term being requested.

What is a medical withdrawal?

A student may submit a medical withdrawal request when an unexpected serious illness or injury prevents the student from continuing classes. The medical withdrawal policy covers physical health and mental health difficulties.

What is a compassionate withdrawal?

A student may submit a compassionate withdrawal request when unexpected extraordinary personal reasons, not related to the student's physical or mental health, prevent the student from continuing in classes. Examples are caring for a seriously ill family member or a death in the student's immediate family.

What is the difference between a complete and a partial withdrawal?

A complete withdrawal would be a request to withdraw from all courses in a specific semester. A partial withdrawal is a request to withdraw from some courses in a specific semester. A majority of requests are for a complete withdrawal of all classes. Requests for less than a complete withdrawal must be well documented to justify the selective nature of the partial withdrawal.

What is the review process?

Each college has a designated individual who reviews medical and compassionate withdrawal requests, according to the college's procedures. A student requesting a medical or compassionate withdrawal is referred to the college of their major. A nondegree undergraduate student is referred to different colleges by campus. Nondegree-seeking undergraduate students taking classes online or at the Tempe campus should contact The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Downtown Phoenix and Polytechnic campus students should contact the College of Integrative Arts and Sciences, and West campus students are referred to the New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences. A nondegree graduate student is referred to the Graduate College. The college contact approves or denies the request based on the documentation provided and will notify the student of the decision. Requests submitted without detailed supporting documentation will be considered incomplete and will not be reviewed.

What happens when my request is approved?

The college contact determines:

  • The approved effective date based on the documentation provided by the student or health care provider.

  • If a medical administrative hold should be placed on the student's record blocking the student from future registration at ASU. The hold is removed by the college contact after the student or health care provider supplies documentation explaining that the student is well enough to return to ASU.

An approved medical or compassionate withdrawal request will result in a special note on the student’s unofficial transcript indicating the nature of the withdrawal. Medical and compassionate withdrawal requests and supporting documents are retained by the college of the student's major for five years, filed separately from other records.

Review before submitting a request

If you are receiving financial assistance, you are strongly encouraged to consult with a Financial Aid and Scholarship Services counselor to identify and understand the financial aid and monetary implications of processing this withdrawal transaction.

If you are using VA education benefits, please consult with the Pat Tillman Veterans Center to discuss possible alternative resources, and the impact an approved medical or compassionate withdrawal may have on your benefits. A signature from a PTVC representative is required on the Medical/Compassionate Withdrawal form to proceed.

If you are an international student with an F-1/J-1 visa, you must consult with the International Students and Scholars Center to discuss the serious immigration consequences that may result from your withdrawal from ASU. As an international with an F-1/J-1 visa, you must provide medical documentation from a U.S. licensed medical doctor, doctor of osteopathy, licensed clinical psychologist, psychiatrist or licensed psychologist. If you are an international student seeking a medical withdrawal for the current semester, you will also need to complete this form for the ISSC.

Submitting your request

Submit the following to the college contact of your major:

  1. The Medical/Compassionate Withdrawal form request.

  2. A personal statement explaining the nature of your circumstances and how it has affected your ability to complete classes.

  3. Provide detailed supporting documentation. Requirements vary:

    • For a complete medical withdrawal — a letter from your attending health care provider that specifies:

      The date of onset of illness.

        The dates you were under professional care.

          The general nature of your medical condition and why/how it prevented you from completing your coursework.

            The date of your anticipated return to school.

              The last date you were able to attend class.

              • For a partial medical withdrawal — a letter typed on the health care provider's letterhead stationery that includes the above and justifies the selective nature of withdrawing from some but not all classes.

              • A compassionate withdrawal — documentation dependent upon the nature of your circumstances.

            The medical and compassionate withdrawal process is focused on the student’s academic record as it relates to the student’s health and wellness. Tuition refunds are not guaranteed, even with approval, and are not an option if the request is submitted more than two years after semester the request is for. You are strongly encouraged to submit your request as soon as possible.


            ASU Procedure for Medical and Compassionate Withdrawal