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Request for Leave of Absence

Leave of Absence Policy -Undergraduate Students, Faculty of Education

A Leave of Absence (LOA) may be granted to undergraduate students who are in Satisfactory standing for the following reasons:

  • maternity or parenting reasons
  • personal or family health reasons
  • professional development related to studies 
  • required military service

Leave of Absence must be requested on a term-by-term basis and may be granted for a period of up to 52 weeks. Supporting documentation is required, and can be uploaded using the form below.

If you are an international student, before applying for an LOA, make sure you first schedule an appointment with an Advisor in International Student Services to discuss the repercussions of going on a Leave of Absence.

The following reasons are not grounds for a Leave of Absence:

  • personal objectives (travel, time off, volunteering, etc.)
  • employment
  • professional development unrelated to studies
  • financial matters (need to work more hours to pay for school, etc)
    • If you're in this situation, we encourage you to schedule a Budget & Debt Management appointment with one of the Scholarships and Student Aid Office's Financial Aid Counsellors, who will try to work with you to see what can be arranged so you can remain at McGill with reduced financial barriers.

If you are not eligible for Leave of Absence, you may withdraw from the University. Students in satisfactory standing are eligible to request readmission to the Faculty of Education with no penalty.

How Leave of Absence Works

The mention “Leave of Absence” will be recorded on your transcript for each semester it is requested. If Leave of Absence is granted after the term has started, any courses will be removed from your record.  No tuition fees will be charged for the duration of the authorized leave.  During a leave of absence you maintain an active student ID card and will have access to McGill email and use of the libraries. You are not permitted to register for courses or to participate in student internships or undergraduate research. You shall not normally attend another academic institution (exceptions may be requested for professional development)

Deadline to Apply

An official Leave of Absence must be requested before the end of the web withdrawal with refund deadline of the term in which the request to go on leave is made; requests made past this deadline will be considered by the ISA Office's Officer on a case-by-case basis and are not guaranteed. Please consult the 'Important Dates for Students' for further information. 

After the web withdrawal with refund deadline, students may withdraw themselves without refund up until the end of the withdrawal without refund deadline (see 'Important Dates'). After the withdrawal without refund deadline, students may request a late withdrawal without refund from the ISA (supporting documentation required). 

Access to Services During a Leave of Absence

  1. Access to Student Services (Counselling Services, Mental Health, Career Services, Office for Students with Disabilities, etc)  Because students on a LOA pay no fees, Student Services are not available. However, students may opt-in to the Student Services at the usual rate by contacting the Students Services main office in the Brown Student Services Building

  2. Scholarships and Finanacial Aid  Students who are eligible for scholarship renewal will not have scholarship money transferred to their account while they are on Leave, but will maintain eligibility for renewal upon registration in subsequent terms. Terms and conditions vary among loan and bursary providers; contact an advisor in Scholarships and Student Aid to discuss your individual situation. 

  3. International Students Contact International Student Services (ISS) to discuss your individual circumstances and the possible interaction with your immigration status and health insurance status.

Returning from a Leave of Absence

  • Students should register for courses according to the normal McGill deadlines (see Important Dates) for the term following their Leave of Absence.
  • Students in a B.Ed program only: If your leave was granted for personal health reasons, you are required to submit the "Return to Study-Healthcare Provider Approval Form".
  • The Faculty of Education will change your status to “withdrawn” after one year of approved Leave of Absence if you have not returned to the University. You will remain eligible to request readmission.


McGill University is located on land that has long served as a site of meeting and exchange amongst Indigenous peoples, including the Haudenosaunee and Anishinabeg nations. McGill honours, recognizes, and respects these nations as the traditional stewards of the lands and waters on which we meet. Learn more.

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