MIT: Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyStudent Support Services


There are many reasons why undergraduates may need or wish to take time away from the Institute. There may be personal or medical issues interfering with their academics; opportunities for professional experience, such as an internship; family or community commitments; or the desire to just take a break. The deans in S3 are available to talk with you about your situation, and to guide you through the process of taking time away, and returning. Before leaving the Institute, you should have a clear understanding of the expectations during your withdrawal. Call or stop by S3 to arrange an appointment with a dean. Consultation with a dean is required in order to process a withdrawal.

There are three types of withdrawals:

  1. Voluntary Withdrawal: If a student in good academic standing wishes to take time away from MIT for non-medical reasons, a Voluntary Withdrawal may be appropriate. A Voluntary Withdrawal is typically sought because a student wants to participate in an educational or personal growth experience (e.g., internship, religious mission) or due to personal/family circumstances. Under the terms of a Voluntary Withdrawal, a student takes at least one full semester away from MIT and cannot register again until s/he has been readmitted.
  2. Medical Withdrawal: A Medical Withdrawal is usually prompted when a decision is made that, for reasons pertaining to mental or physical health, a student is unable to participate in campus life including, but not limited to, an inability to complete or make satisfactory progress towards Institute academic requirements. Under the terms of a Medical Withdrawal, a student must take at least one full semester away from MIT, and complete the prescribed course of medical and/or mental health treatment before being considered for readmission. A student cannot register again at MIT until he/she has been readmitted.
  3. Required Withdrawal: A Required Withdrawal is voted on by the Committee on Academic Performance (CAP) at the end of the Fall and Spring terms, and requires a student, who is not making satisfactory academic progress, to be away for at least one academic year (two regular terms). Under the terms of a Required Withdrawal, a student is expected to take at least two consecutive semesters of challenging courses at another four-year college or university receiving grades of B or better. A student cannot register again until s/he has been readmitted.