Sometimes things don’t go as planned.

You’re not as good at chemistry as you thought. You took on more responsibilities than you could handle. You didn’t study or show up for class as much as you should have.

Whatever the reason might be, sometimes you just need to withdraw from a course.

Withdrawing from a course before a deadline set by the university allows students to remove a course from their schedule without a grade.

It happens to the best of students. Whether it’s mid-semester and you just hate the class or late in the semester and you aren’t sure if you can pass, withdrawing often is the best option.

The first step is to meet with an academic adviser. The adviser will talk about the implications that can come from withdrawing — the impact on graduation, meeting degree requirements and maintaining enough hours to be considered a full-time student.

The next step is to talk with the course instructor, who does have the ability to assign either an F (fail) or a W (withdraw). It depends on the timing of withdrawal and the grade status at the time.

If the instructor assigns a failing grade for the course, that will impact the GPA, whereas a W will not.

Pat Sternberg, a former journalism academic adviser, said a grade of W can help a student keep a GPA-based scholarship.

Another important step in the withdrawal process is to consult with the Office of Student Financial Aid to determine whether withdrawing from a class will impact current or future financial aid.

If a student withdraws and falls below full-time student status, some financial aid must be “paid back,” or a scholarship could be lost.

Withdrawing requires completion of a form found on the MU Registrar’s website or within a department.

The completed form must be taken to the Office of the University Registrar in 125 Jesse Hall to be processed. The registrar will notify a student when the withdrawal is complete.

Any withdrawal can be accomplished before the 10th day of classes. Withdrawing can be done on MyZou without any permission or forms.

Deadlines to withdraw vary year to year, so be sure to consult the registrar’s website for the current dates.

More questions? Call 573-882-7881, email, or stop by from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday in 125 Jesse Hall.

Fall 2018 dates to remember

Monday, Aug. 20: Classwork begins

Monday, Aug. 27: Last day to register, add or change sections

Tuesday, Aug. 28: Drop only period begins

Friday, Aug. 31: Last day to change grading option

Monday, Sept. 24: Last day to drop course without a grade

Wednesday, Oct. 24: Early registration begins for spring 2019 by appointment for current students

Thursday, Nov. 15: Last day to change divisions

Saturday, Nov. 17: Thanksgiving recess begins close of day, Fall 2018

Monday, Nov. 26: Classwork resumes at 8 a.m.

Monday, Dec. 3: Last day to withdraw from a course and the term

Thursday, Dec. 6: Fall 2018 classwork ends

  • Former Staff Photographer and Photo Editor. Find me on Twitter and Instagram at @AllisonPCollins

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