Withdrawals (WD), Discontinue not fail (DC) and suspension

Withdrawal from a unit of study

If you drop a unit of study before the census date it is considered a withdrawal.

You will not be liable to HECS/CSP payment or fees for such units of study, and it is not considered in WAM or progression calculations.

A withdrawal is not listed on your formal transcript.

Discontinue not fail (DC) & Discontinue fail (DF)

If you drop a unit of study after the census date, but before week 7 of the semester it is considered as DC (discontinue not fail).

This grade was formerly called "DNF".

Units with a grade of DC are not considered in WAM or progression calculations.

A DC is listed on your official transcript.

You are still liable to HECS/CSP payment or fees for such units of study. In very unique circumstances, a student may be eligible for a fee refund or cancellation of CSP/HECS for units awarded DNF. The academic decision to award a DNF or DC does not imply the administrative decision to give a refund will be granted. Information is available from the Student Centre.

If you drop a subject after week 7 of the semester it is considered as DF (discontinue fail).

You are still liable to HECS/CSP payment or fees for such units of study. It is considered in progression calculations, but is not included in WAM calculations.

Discontinue not fail (DC) - Applying for a late change of grade

In exceptional circumstances, the Faculty can award a grade of DC after week 7 of a semester. This is usually only considered in cases of serious illness or misadventure beyond your reasonable control where it is impossible to complete the unit.

In such cases, you are required to apply in writing to the faculty. Your letter should firstly outline in your own words how your circumstances meet the criteria below and you will need to provide strong independent evidence (eg doctors certificates) with your application. When considering submissions, the faculty uses the following criteria:

  1. Well documented by a registered medical practitioner or counsellor (or other as applicable) that verifies the extent of the impact and the period of impact on the student?; and
  2. Demonstrates the student was unable to complete the unit of study; and
  3. Any pre-existing condition or issue significantly deteriorated after week 7; and
  4. That it was beyond the control of the student to withdraw/discontinue from the unit by the relevant date; and
  5. The student was unable, for reasons beyond the student’s control, to apply for special consideration at the time; and
  6. In instances where a DC is sought for discrete units rather than all units in a semester, that there is a specific, documented impact in relation to the particular unit that distinguishes it from performance in other units of study successfully
    completed in the same semester.

We also consider the following:

  1. Previous record - are the results comparable with similar units of study in the past?
  2. Concurrent records - how has the student performed in other units of study for the semester in question.
  3. Was the student demonstrating at least a pass level of performance on assessment tasks prior to the onset of the illness or misadventure?
  4. Has the student already received a fail in the unit in question due to academic honesty or failure to pass a compulsory task, that is unrelated to the illness/misadventure.

Note that applying for DC does not guarantee that the request will be granted. If you are applying during the semester, and the request is not granted, you can either continue in the unit and obtain a mark/grade based on whatever work you have done, or receive a DF - discontinue fail.

Requests are to be submitted either in person to the Engineering faculty office in the PNR Building, or via email to .

Suspension of candidature

Suspension of study is covered by the Coursework Policy.

Students are permitted to suspend their study (leave of absence) for 1 or 2 semesters during their degree. Students are required to inform us of suspension, and permission is automatic.

The dean (or his/her delegate in such matters) can approve an additional suspension of 1 or 2 semesters. You may be asked for a valid reason and evidence when seeking such an extended suspension.

Most international students are not generally permitted to suspend their candidature in accordance with the terms of their visa except in special, exceptional and well-documented cases - please visit the International Student Visa Information Page to get full details.

Students should apply for suspension of studies online under the My studies tab and select Course details in Sydney Student.

If you are on Stage 3 of the academic progression process and have been asked to show good cause, you are still obliged to respond to the show good cause request even if you are also applying for suspension of candidature.

Discontinuation of studies

Discontinuation of studies means leaving your degree completely.

Discontinuation of study is covered by the Coursework Policy.

Students should apply for discontinuation of studies online under the My studies tab and select Course details in Sydney Student.

If you are on Stage 3 of the academic progression process and have been asked to show good cause, if you voluntarily decide to discontinue your degree before the due date of your show good cause response then no possible exclusion will be recorded on your academic record.