Oberlin allows for leaves and withdrawals from the college and conservatory that might pertain to academic, personal, and or medical circumstances. We also make provisions for returning to and or being reinstated to the college and conservatory after a period of absence.

In addition to consulting with the Academic Advising Resource Center, you must consult with the appropriate academic department and dean to ensure your request for a leave or withdrawal is handled in an appropriate and efficient manner.

Students who participate in off-campus study options not conducted by Oberlin College itself are classified as being on an academic leave of absence. Student applications for leaves are processed by the Director of International Student Programs and granted by the Off-Campus Study Committee before a student’s departure from Oberlin. The Office of Study Away handles off-campus programs and academic leaves.

Office of Study Away

Students who wish to take a leave from Oberlin for a health-related condition need to apply for a medical leave of absence through the Office of the Dean of Students.

Office of the Dean of Students

*Due to the current COVID-19 situation and the switch to a 3 semester system, the deadline for personal leaves and extentions has been postponed until July 20, 2020.  Please submit your completed and signed form to lwithdra@oberlin.edu and the necessary signatures will be obtained for you.  Once your form is submitted, please schedule an appointment with an AARC assistant dean at the following link:  Self Schedule Link.

Students who wish to pursue primarily non-academic activities away from Oberlin may apply for a personal leave of absence through the Academic Advising Resource Center. Work taken at other institutions during a personal leave may be transferred to Oberlin in accordance with the following guidelines:

  • Up to two courses/eight credits in one semester (or four credits for each quarter or trimester), for a total number of courses/credits not to exceed the post-matriculation limits in the transfer-of-credit policy.

*Completed applications for leaves beginning the following semester are due the first Friday in December and the first Friday in May. Requests for extensions of personal leaves must be received by the same deadlines. Applications received after these deadlines will be given consideration; however there is a late filing fee of $300.


Download and print
Personal Leave of Absence form

Students who wish to withdraw permanently from Oberlin College must meet with an Assistant Dean for Academic Success in the Academic Advising Resource Center to begin the withdrawal process. Please call 440.775.5183    or stop in during office hours to make an appointment.  Conservatory and double-degree students should first consult their principal advisors and the associate dean of the conservatory. All students who receive financial aid from Oberlin College must consult with the Office of Financial Aid before withdrawing.


In order to return to Oberlin, a student who has been withdrawn, suspended or is on medical leave must submit a reinstatement form to the Academic Advising Resource Center. Students returning from Personal Leave or Academic Leave do not submit a reinstatement form.

A student on medical leave must submit a reinstatement form to the Academic Advising Resource Center in addition to the Student Application to Return from MLOA and the Health Care Provider Assessment and Recommendation form. Please visit the Dean of Students website for information on the return from medical leave process.

Filing deadlines differ for students who have been withdrawn or suspended and students on a medical leave; please refer to the reinstatement form for further information.

View Reinstatement Process