Withdrawal and leave of absence

Before you discontinue your studies at La Trobe University or take a leave of absence, it is strongly recommended that you discuss the matter with your College Adviser, International Student Services team at La Trobe International or counselling services.

Withdrawal (Discontinuation of Enrolment - after commencement of course)

Course withdrawal is also known as discontinuation of enrolment. It is important that you are certain of your decision, as after you withdraw from a course, you are no longer an enrolled student at La Trobe University.

Discussion with a Lecturer or Course Coordinator does not constitute official notification of an intention to discontinue studies. You must complete a Discontinuation of Enrolment Form [PDF] and submit the form to the La Trobe International office in person or via email to: LTICompliance@latrobe.edu.au.

Your student ID card must be handed in with the Discontinuation of Enrolment Form.

Leave of absence (after commencement of course)

For international students holding a student visa, a leave of absence may be granted in all undergraduate and postgraduate courses. The University can only approve for international student visa holders to take time off from their studies where compassionate and compelling circumstances exist, or if pre-requisite subjects are not available in the semester or study period a student  is expected to enrol in.

You must complete an Application for Leave of Absence form [PDF] and submit your supporting documentation to the LTI office in person or via email to LTICompliance@latrobe.edu.au. The LTI Compliance team will assess your application in the first instance and will communicate with you and the College accordingly.

Please note:

  • Discussion with a Lecturer or a Course Coordinator does not mean that you have officially notified the University of your intention to take a leave of absence.
  • Initial enquiries involving possible leave of absence for research and higher degree students, should be made directly to the Graduate Research School. Their contact details are available online.
  • All applications for a leave of absence for research and higher degree students, still need to be submitted to LTI in person or via email to LTICompliance@latrobe.edu.au. The LTI Compliance team will assess your application in the first instance and will communicate with you and the Graduate Research School accordingly.
  • No Leave of Absence will be approved if any fees owing to the University.

Changing your tertiary institution

If you want to change universities within the first six calendar months of your principal course (per the date on your CoE) and you want to continue studying in Australia, you will need to apply for a Release from La Trobe University. If you can demonstrate to the satisfaction of La Trobe University that the transfer to another provider is in your best interests, a Release may be granted. Examples include where the transfer represents a clear educational progression; where a student is experiencing demonstrable academic difficulties in their current course; or where the student's personal circumstances suggest that changing to an alternative course with another provider is in their best interests.

See also:

Please note:

  • If you have enrolled in your course at La Trobe University you must officially discontinue your studies.
  • If you hold a student visa and have not yet enrolled, you still require a Release during the first six months of your intended principal course before accepting an offer from another provider.
  • If you discontinue your studies before your results are released, you will not receive results for any completed assessments, so you might consider waiting until after your results to change your university.

How to apply:

  • Complete a Request for a Release Form, together with a written personal statement explaining why you want to be released..
  • Provide an unconditional Letter of Offer from the University you wish to attend, as well as any other evidence which supports your application.
  • If you are under 18 years of age you will need the written consent of your parent or guardian.
  • If you are a sponsored student we require written permission from your sponsor to provide a Release.
  • Send your release or any other related queries to int.release@latrobe.edu.au.

You are advised to maintain your enrolment and continue to attend all scheduled classes, until a decision is made on your application. You will receive a response within 10 working days from the date of submission. If you are granted a release, you will need to complete a Discontinuation of Enrolment Form [PDF] and have this approved by LTI and your College. There is no fee charged for a Release. There is no fee charged for a Release.

If you want to change universities after the first six months of your course, you do not need a Letter of Release from La Trobe University once you have completed the first six months of you course. You will need to complete a Discontinuation of Studies Form and have it approved by LTI and your college.

Visa information

Once we have approved your discontinuation or issued a Release we will report to Immigration, formally now known as Department of Home Affairs that you are no longer studying at La Trobe and your CoE will be cancelled. It is your responsibility to ensure that the Department of Home Affairs are aware of your new education provider and of the course you have chosen. You are strongly advised to report to an  the Department of Home Affairs office within 28 days of your cessation of studies at La Trobe University.

Commencing with a new education provider

If you are granted a Release, you will need to provide this written confirmation from La Trobe University to your new education provider. Once they have issued you with a new CoE you should provide that to the Department of Home Affairs. If your new course is in a different visa subclass to your course at La Trobe University you may be required to apply for a new student visa. More details on this can be found on the Department of Home Affairs' website.