What Parents Need to Know About Withdrawing from a Class

The first step for any student who received a poor grade is to reevaluate the situation. Did the grade come as a surprise? Did the student put in enough study time? Did he or she make every effort to seek the help that is offered (such as attending review sessions in the Academic Resource Center or seeking assistance from a tutor)?

If the answer to any of these questions is no, students need to come to the realization that they need to step up for the next assignment or test in order to get the grade that they want. Doing the same thing they did before will not yield different results.  

For many students, a poor grade is a reflection of not fully understanding that the same habits and behavior that were acceptable in high school are not going to cut it in college. While just filling a seat and listening may have been enough to succeed in a high school setting, succeeding in college requires a student to actually put in the study time needed to get the grade desired. Often, old high school habits have a way of lingering, and can take real effort on a student’s part to shake off.  

If a student is failing a course by the middle of the term, he or she may need to make some tough decisions about withdrawing from the class. Before withdrawing from classes, students need to talk to their professors or advisors in order to make sure they have all of the information necessary to make an informed decision.  

At this point in a semester, if a student drops a class and is below full-time status (minimum of 12 credit hours), his or her academic scholarship is not in jeopardy. For federal and state financial aid purposes, students are held to the standard of the Satisfactory Academic Progress policy. For more information about the policy, contact the Office of Financial Aid.  

Also – GPAs for scholarship renewal are not reviewed until the end of the student’s freshman year. At this point, the cumulative GPA is reviewed in order for students' scholarships to be continued for their sophomore year. Even if students do not meet the required GPA, they more than likely will be able to retain their scholarship for their sophomore year. Rarely will the university take action to revoke a freshman’s scholarship.    

Remember, it’s not the end of the world when a student withdraws from a class. What is important to keep in mind is that students need to assess the situation, and learn what it is they will do differently in the next semester to avoid repeating the same mistakes.