Perhaps, you haven’t been as successful as you hoped to be and find yourself needing to get out of academic suspension. Your challenges could be due to family concerns, and finances, to name a few.
An academic suspension is designed to show that you’re not making sufficient progress toward an undergraduate degree. However, this period away from your study gives you enough time to reassess your academic approach and your purpose in seeking a degree.
An academic suspension can be challenging, but the intention is to help you to re-evaluate your current course, refocus, and come back stronger.
How to get out of academic suspension
You could always get out of an academic suspension. Consider the following:
The first option to consider is to appeal your suspension. Depending on your college or university, you may be able to appeal this decision by submitting an undergraduate appeal of suspension/dismissal form online using the school’s website.
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Usually, the appeal form is found under the “forms” drop-down menu on your school’s website.
Construct a thoughtful and compelling appeal
You want to construct a thoughtful and compelling appeal indicating why your circumstances should be an exception to the policy—make sure to take your time. Visit this recommended LiveCareer’s guide to understand how to write an effective and admissible appeal.
You will be able to attach any supporting documents to your appeal form. Typically, the appeal form may require you to mention the following:
a) The exceptional circumstances that led to your academic suspension or dismissal.
b) Any completed actions you took during the semester to improve your academic performance.
c) Why you think those actions were not enough to prevent your academic dismissal or suspension.
d) Your specific plan of action to return to good academic standing (usually 2.0+ cumulative GPA).
You may also have the opportunity to provide additional, relevant information not already required on the appeal form. The information should indicate why your appeal should be approved.
Submit your appeal for review
Your school has an appeal committee responsible for reviewing written appeals, usually at the end of each fall and spring term.
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You should find the review and appeal dates due for the current semester at the bottom of your academic standing email or any letter you receive.
If your appeal is approved, you will get out of the academic suspension, and the school will reinstate your status as an active student, sometimes on “Academic Warning”.
However, if your appeal to get out of academic suspension is denied, the school will remove you from your current courses for the subsequent semester and the suspension stands through the next full term.
Typically, a suspension at the end of spring lasts through summer, and you’re able to return the next spring. However, a suspension at the end of fall lasts through spring, and you return in summer.
Appeal to your financial aid program
Unfortunately, an academic suspension does have a negative effect on your financial aid. Some financial aid programs typically require high GPAs and school performance to continue funding, and they have higher standards than colleges.
If your financial aid is affected by an academic suspension, appeal to the financial aid program for a waiver to retain aid.
Understand that your financial aid program may only continue funding if your poor academic performance was due to events beyond your power, including a disruptive life event or health issue.
You may still be able to retain financial aid if you switch programs or colleges. Your overall GPA may be improved by a new major that does not include failed classes, which keeps you eligible for financial aid. This is only a loophole, so is not reliable as a strategy to graduate.
Make sure to contact the office for financial aid for your financial aid appeal, scholarship eligibility after an academic suspension or to transfer your financial aid to another institution.
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What to do after an academic dismissal/suspension
You need to make good use of your time—develop successful plans to prepare for your return and fundamental skills needed to succeed in college (including study skills, writing skills, and time management).
Consider the following during your suspension period to come back stronger:
Take an academic time off
If you experienced challenges during the semester between balancing school and personal/family concerns, use this time to resolve those concerns. After resolving the issues, try to heal quickly or recover from the concerns and return refocus on academics.
Take courses at a different institution
Depending on your school’s policy, courses you take at another institution during an academic suspension are not accepted as credit towards your degree.
However, courses at another institution, including a post-secondary institution or community college may help you to develop relevant skills to improve your performance when you return. Such skills include:
- Writing skills
- Study skills
- Time management
Refer to your school’s policy regarding academic dismissals to know if courses from other institutions count towards your credit.
Get a job or volunteer
Take your time away to work or volunteer in a service. This helps you to gain experience and perspective, as well as save some money for future studies, especially if you work your way through school.
Rethink your college/university career
The academic suspension also gives you the opportunity to rethink your career in the university or college. Perhaps, you attended school just because it is the thing to do, without a solid plan regarding where your degree will lead to. Use this period to reevaluate your future and seek assistance from professionals.
How do you return at the end of your suspension term?
Depending on your school, you may be able to apply for readmission online by submitting a re-entry application through your school’s office of admissions.
Check the academic calendar so that you can apply for readmission before registration opens for the semester you have to return. You want to apply for readmission about 3 weeks before the start of the upcoming semester to have sufficient time to meet with your assigned faculty advisor and register for classes.
Be ready to address personal changes to enable you to gain more academic success if the school allows you to return to your studies.