Suspension, Discontinuation & Recommencement of Candidature
The information on this page refers to students studying in undergraduate degrees.
Defer - applies to students who have not started studying yet
Suspend - pausing your studies for one or two semesters
Recommence - returning to study again after you have suspended
Discontinue - stopping your studies in the Faculty of Science
At the University of Sydney, we use the term deferment when referring to students who have not yet begun their studies and want to put off their start date. If you have received an offer from UAC but wish to delay your start date, then you defer via UAC. Information on deferring your studies is usually supplied with your UAC offer.
We use the term suspension when referring to students who have begun their degree program but who wish to pause their studies for one or two semesters. Suspension differs to deferment in that deferment is for students who haven't started their degree yet and want to delay their start date, whereas suspension is for students who have already begun their degree, but want to pause their studies (with the intention of picking up where they left off, at a later date.)
There are some points that you should be aware of before you suspend your studies;
- students can only suspend for up to two semesters at one time.
- a student may suspend his or her enrolment in the course for a maximum period of 1 year; OR with the approval of the Dean, suspend his or her enrolment in the course for a maximum period of 2 years. All students need to complete their degree within 10 years.
- A student may suspend his or her enrolment in the course for a maximum period of 1 year; OR with the approval of the Dean, suspend his or her enrolment in the course for a maximum period of 2 years. All students need to complete their degree within 10 years.
- suspension application forms must always be submitted to the Faculty Office before the last day for withdrawal in any semester. (Usually 31 March in Semester 1 and 31 August in Semester 2).
- students are not usually allowed to suspend their studies in order to undertake studies elsewhere.
- suspended students must contact the Faculty Office by the date indicated on their suspension letter in order to recommence their studies.
How to suspend (pause) your studies
Submit the Suspension form to the Faculty Office by 31 March for Semester 1 or 31 August for Semester 2.
The Faculty Office will send you a letter explaining that your suspension has been approved and when you are expected to return to your studies.
This letter will also advise you to complete a Recommencement form so that you can re-enrol at the end of your suspension period. You must fill this form in and return it to the Faculty Office between the dates indicated on the letter.
On receipt of your Recommencement form the Faculty requests enrolment papers for you and sends you a letter telling you to come in and re-enrol on a specific date.
Suspended students must come in person to re-enrol on the date indicated or send a proxy to re-enrol for them.
You can download a suspension form here.
This form can also be used for discontinuation (stopping your studies completely).
Recommencement is starting your degree studies again after you have suspended.
All suspended students need to contact the Faculty to recommence their studies when their suspension period comes to an end.
Notify the Faculty of your intention to recommence your studies by downloading and completing a Recommencement form.
After you have returned the Recommencement form to the Faculty Office you will receive a letter indicating when you must come in to re-enrol.
Re-enrolling (choosing your subjects and paying your fees). Suspended students must re-enrol in person or send a proxy to re-enrol for them.
You can download a Recommencement form here.
Students intending to return to their studies in Semester 1 normally need to submit their completed recommencement form to the Faculty Office by the first week of February.
Students intending to return to their studies in Semester 2 normally need to submit their completed recommencement form to the Faculty Office by the last week of June.
Discontinuation is stopping your studies in a degree program completely. Students who have decided not to study any further, who have transferred to another degree, another Faculty or another University must discontinue their Science degree.
Students who expect to graduate from their degree need not discontinue.
You can download a Discontinuation form here.
N.B. Once a student is discontinued from a degree they will have to reapply for admission through the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC) to study in that degree again.