This handout is addressed particularly to students who are required to withdraw, who are on probation, or who may be thinking of appealing their standing in a program. Its purpose is to draw attention to some of the policies and resources offered by Western to help you plan for your future.
Policies are not very exciting to read, but understanding the policies that apply to your situation is essential if you want to change that situation.
After reading the relevant policy, get advice or clarification of points you find confusing. Good resources are your Academic Counsellor (Dean's Office or University College); a Departmental Counsellor; and the Office of the Ombudsperson (especially if you are considering an appeal.)
Keep all relevant documents, such as your grade report, letters, and supporting materials in a safe place. Print out relevant emails or save them.
Finding the Relevant Policy and Procedure
A useful resource for policies and procedures is the Academic Calendar. You can find this document at westerncalendar.uwo.ca. Also, a visit to your Faculty website (academic counselling page) should provide useful advice and information about policies, procedures, deadlines, and requirements. If you have been required to withdraw you should check with your Faculty to see if they have posted a downloadable Waiver of Progression Requirements form.
Waiver of Progression Requirements may also be referred to as a Dean’s Waiver.
Another useful site is Governance www.uwo.ca/univsec/. Click on the Academic Policies tab. Policies are grouped by topic: Registration, Progression, Graduation; Examinations; and Rights and Responsibilities may be particularly relevant.
On Probation or Required to Withdraw
In academic programs students are adjudicated at specific points in the year: May (September to May courses), and then in July/August (for students completing courses in summer sessions). Adjudication means that the student's grades and course selections are compared to the requirements for progression for both the degree and the specific program of study. If you do not meet the requirements for progression you may be put on probation with conditions or be required to withdraw from the University.
Should you appeal your Conditions of Probation? Should you appeal for a Waiver of Progression Requirements to avoid having to withdraw for twelve months?
It is your life and your future, and only you can decide whether to appeal or not. Your appeal is virtually certain to fail unless all of the following are true:
serious medical or extenuating circumstances prevented you from having an acceptable academic performance
you can document those medical or extenuating circumstances
the medical or extenuating circumstances were beyond your control
the medical or extenuating circumstances were not and could not have been accommodated through extensions, special examinations, and modifications
your appeal has been submitted by the applicable deadline
Be aware that for students funded through the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP), decisions pertaining to your academic life may affect your present and/or future funding eligibility through the OSAP program.
If you have not been permitted to continue into the program of your choice, the reason may be
admission to that program is competitive
you are lacking one or more of the requirements - a specific course, average, or grade
Consulting a program advisor or academic counsellor is a good way to find out what steps you can take to help you gain admission to your first choice program in future.
If you have been required to withdraw you will not be permitted to register at Western until you have been readmitted. Full-time and Part-time application forms are available at http://welcome.uwo.ca/admissions/how_to_apply/index.html. These forms must be submitted electronically.
There is also a Reconsideration of Admission form on the Registrar's website that all applicants applying to return to Western must complete and submit online. This form is available here
When should you apply for readmission?
You should not wait twelve months to apply. Applications for admission open 11 months before the September start. For example, those who wish to apply for next September can start the application process this October. Decisions will not be made until all supporting documentation is received. Upon review of a completed application, the Admissions Committee may ask for additional documentation to support your claims, such as a doctor’s note if you indicated that you were ill.
Be sure to apply well before the deadline. If you are considering applying for readmission to Western, you are strongly urged to contact the Academic Counselling Office of your faculty or Affiliated University College with regards to your future academic pursuits.
Note: If you plan to attend or have attended any postsecondary institution, even after you apply for readmission, you must amend your application on the OUAC website as soon as possible to have this included on your application for admission and you must request that an official transcript be submitted to the Admissions Office as soon as it is available from the institutions you attended.
Readmission is not automatic. In deciding whether to readmit a student who previously failed to meet progression requirements, Admission committees take all available information into account, including:
information on the forms you complete
academic history (previous Western and highschool marks, any other records, i.e., college or university work)
documentation of circumstances you believe hindered your academic progress
any course work or upgrading done since you last attended Western
other activities since you last attended Western including paid work and volunteering
Admission committees try to assess how likely it is you will succeed if readmitted. In your Reconsideration of Admission you must demonstrate that you are prepared to be academically successful at University.
This handout was prepared by the Office of the Ombudsperson. It is not an official university document, and is not intended to replace university policy or advice and information from academic counsellors or the Office of the Registrar. The Ombudsperson and the Associate Ombudsperson are available during the summer to discuss your individual situation and options.