Two weeks is
plenty of time
One of the initiatives put forward this year
by the Student Caucus on Governance has been to have the status
of withdrawn courses removed from academic transcripts. This
means that for students who have withdrawn from courses after
the end of that hellish period we have all come to know and
love as add/drop and between the final date to drop without
academic penalty, there will no longer be a note on transcripts
which shows the course withdrawal.
Currently, for students who drop courses during the add/drop
period, it will not show on their academic transcript. Those
students who decide to drop a course after the final deadline
are likely failing the course regardless and deserve the fail
assessed by the Registrar’s Office.
For the grey area in between these periods, showing that someone
has withdrawn from a course is important as it can have a revealing
look into the type of student they are. These notes do not
show the course as a fail and therefore have no bearing on
your academic record.
What they do reveal however, is if certain students are prone
to withdrawing or are simply too lazy to get the course dropped
during the add/drop period.
Students should use the resources available to them before
they choose their courses; from checking the reading lists
to looking at professor evaluations or possibly talking to
departments about specific courses. If students spent the same
amount of time on selecting courses as they did selecting their
Jim Bob’s outfits, they wouldn’t have this problem
of the withdrawal to begin with.
In the cases of withdrawals based on personal or medical reasons,
addressing these concerns to faculty deans will have the withdrawn
note removed from the transcript. If you can provide legitimate
reasons for dropping a course after the add/drop period, then
there is nothing to worry about.
It is hard to assess whether applications for graduate or
professional schools are affected by withdrawns, but for those
who do not have legitimate reasons they should suffer the consequences
of their actions. Employers do not generally check university
transcripts when hiring, just simply that you have graduated,
making withdrawns irrelevant in this instance.
What should instead be addressed are some of the bigger problems
faced by students — notably add/drop itself. The Office
of the Registrar should be looking into keeping their online
registration services available so students can add or drop
courses during this period without the hassle of long lines.
This is done at other universities, so why is it not available
to students here?
Making Registrar services more efficient for students would
more accurately address the root of the problems associated
with withdrawn notes on university transcripts.