Dropping Courses


You may wish to drop a course/course(s) that you are taking for a variety of reasons. It is important to familiarize yourself with the drop process.


COVID-19 related updates regarding upcoming Term(s) and more can be found on the COVID-19 Information for Students page.

If you are experiencing academic challenges, you may wish to speak with your professor(s) directly. However, if the challenges persists or affects a number of courses, or if they are beyond the scope of what your professor may be able to assist with, please consult with your academic advisor. An academic advisor can help with academic planning based on your unique circumstances.


Before the Drop Deadline of Each Term

NOTE: Effective May 1, 2013, the Committee on Standing no longer considers requests for late withdrawal based on misunderstanding of how ACORN works.

Each term, there is a drop date by which students are eligible to drop a course on their own through ACORN. Once dropped, the course will disappear from the student’s records (i.e. transcript) as if the course was never taken in the first place. This is commonly known as the term’s course drop deadline without academic penalty. Refer to the Academic Dates & Deadlines page for the drop deadlines for each term.

Once successfully dropped, the course will no longer appear on student’s timetable and transcript on ACORN.


After the Drop Deadline of Each Term (Graduate Students)

After the official deadline to drop a course without academic penalty has passed, students wishing to drop a course / course(s) must petition to the Committee on Standing for a late withdrawal in the course(s). It is important for students in such a situation to request and arrange an appointment with your academic advisor for academic advising and academic planning.

Withdrawals approved under this procedure will be noted on the academic record by the course status WDR (retroactive withdrawal). This course status will have no effect on the GPA.

The Committee on Standing convenes at the following time periods for each term’s petition review:

    • Summer Term Petitions: Beginning of September
    • Fall Term Petitions: Beginning of January
    • Winter Term Petitions: late May

For students wishing to petition for coursework, please submit your petition materials before the follow deadlines, through your academic advisor. If you missed this deadline, please connect with your academic advisor on what other options might be available.

    • Summer 2022 courses: deadline for submission will be September 19th.

Required Documents for the Petition

    • Complete an Add / Drop Course Form (PDF) (Complete the “Drop” section)
    • Provide a statement on the extenuating circumstance(s), that was/were beyond the student’s control, that negatively impacted the student’s ability to complete the course, and what might have prevented the student from dropping the course by the term’s course drop deadline (without academic penalty).
    • Provide any supporting document(s):
      • For instance, if the student was negatively impacted by a medical situation, the student is required to provide documentation: Verification of Illness (PDF).
      • If the student is registered with the Accessibility Services, a letter from the student’s accessibility advisor will suffice as supporting document.
    • Submit the above documents to Student Services through your academic advisor.

Please note that the Committee may or may not support the request based on the reasons submitted by students and supporting documentation. Generally, the Committee will only consider documented, extraordinary, unexpected circumstances as valid reasons for wanting to drop a course after the official drop deadline. This could be a personal or medical situation, but the situation must be one that was unforeseeable and that was sufficiently serious that it prevented the student from completing the course.

IMPORTANT: For graduate students, the Committee’s decision will be sent for review by the School of Graduate Studies. Please note that the graduate grading policy does not require assignments be returned prior to the drop deadline. Waiting for mid-term results is not a valid reason for missing the drop deadline, and will not be considered by the Committee on Standing.


After the Drop Deadline of Each Term (Undergraduate Students)


Undergraduate Late Withdrawal (LWD)

Applicable Timeline: After the drop deadline of each term, but before last day of classes in the term in which the course is offered.

Undergraduate students in the Faculty of Information may request to withdraw without petition from a total of no more than 1.5-credits, provided such a request is made by the last day of classes in the relevant term. Withdrawals approved under this procedure will be noted on the academic record by the course status LWD (Late Withdrawal). This course status will have no effect on the GPA.

Students who have fallen behind with assignments or are not at all prepared to write exams in one or more of courses will be expected to make use of this remedy. It is important that students book an appointment with their academic advisor to assess all available options.

To request for a course to be withdrawn under this LWD procedure, please complete the Late Withdrawal Form.

Students who transfer to the Faculty of Information (from the University of Toronto St. George campus, University of Toronto Mississauga (UTM) campus, or the University of Toronto Scarborough (UTSC) campus), will have all LWD requests (if any) included in their Faculty of Information academic record.

NOTE:

The option for Late Withdrawal is not available if an allegation of academic misconduct is under investigation. If LWD was previously granted in the course, it will be revoked and the percentage grade will stand as the course grade.

Non-Degree students may also request LWD, provided they do not exceed the 1.5 credits maximum throughout their combined degree and non-degree studies.

Students who have not achieved final standing (a final passing mark/P/CR) in at least one course in the Faculty of Information who cancel their registration must re-apply for admission through the Ontario Universities Application Centre if they wish to return in the future. Late Withdrawal (LWD) does not constitute final standing in a course.


Undergraduate Retroactive Withdrawal (WDR)

Applicable Timeline: After the last day of classes, in the term in which the course is offered.

After the last day of classes, for students wishing to drop a course, they must petition to the Committee on Standing for a late withdrawal in the course(s). It is important for students in such a situation to request and arrange an appointment with your academic advisor, for academic advising and academic planning.

Withdrawals approved under this procedure will be noted on the academic record by the course status WDR (retroactive withdrawal). This course status will have no effect on the GPA.

The Committee on Standing convenes at the following time periods for each term’s petition review:

    • Summer Term Petitions: Beginning of September
    • Fall Term Petitions: Beginning of January
    • Winter Term Petitions: late May

For students wishing to petition for coursework that occurred in Winter 2022, please submit your petition materials before the follow deadlines, through your academic advisor. If you missed this deadline, please connect with your academic advisor on what other options might be available.

    • Winter 2022 courses: deadline for submission will be May 23rd.

Required Documents for the Petition

    • Complete an BI — Add / Drop Course Form (PDF) (Complete the “Drop” section)
    • Provide a statement on the extenuating circumstance(s), that was/where beyond the student’s control, that negatively impacted the student’s ability to complete the course, and what might have prevented the student from dropping the course by the term’s course drop deadline (without academic penalty).
    • Provide any supporting document(s):
      • For instance, if the student was negatively impacted by a medical situation, the student is required to provide documentation: Verification of Illness (PDF).
      • If the student is registered with the Accessibility Services, a letter from the student’s accessibility advisor will suffice as supporting document.
    • Submit the above documents to Student Services through your academic advisor.

Please note that the Committee may or may not support the request based on the reasons submitted by students and supporting documentation. Generally, the Committee will only consider documented, extraordinary, unexpected circumstances as valid reasons for wanting to drop a course after the official drop deadline. This could be a personal or medical situation, but the situation must be one that was unforeseeable and that was sufficiently serious that it prevented the student from completing the course.


Petition Results

The Committee on Standing will communicate with students who have requested for a late drop from a course. There are only two possible outcomes: Approved or Denied.

    • Approved petitions for the late drop from a course carry no academic penalty. The course(s) will still appear on the student’s transcript, but a WDR (withdrawal) will be entered next to the course in lieu of a grade. This designation does not affect a student’s GPA.
    • Denied petitions will be assigned the grades the student has earned for completed work and zero for incomplete work. You may appeal a denied petition to the Academic Appeals Committee.

Students who drop all courses in which they are enrolled must also withdraw or take a Leave of Absence from their program.