A student may decide to withdraw from an individual course until 4:00 p.m. eleven college business days before the first Reading Day for the semester. The exact date is published by the Registrar's Office and may be found online. A student may use the withdrawal option twice for a total of two course withdrawals during their career at Dickinson. Students may not use the withdraw option for Physical Education courses.

To officially withdraw from a course, the student must complete the Course Withdrawal Form, which is available in the Registrar's Office or on the Registrar’s Office website. A completed form includes course number and title and the reason for withdrawing. In addition, the form calls for the academic advisor to comment on the student's decision to withdraw. The student is responsible for returning the completed form to the Registrar's Office by the posted deadlines.

A grade of "W" is entered permanently in the student's record to indicate withdrawal from the course. "W" grades do not affect the cumulative grade point average. Generally, the appearance of one or even two "W" grades will not seriously affect a student's record if it is otherwise strong. "W" grades in combination with other indications that the student did not or could not successfully complete normal course work (incomplete grades, light course loads, excessive use of P/F) over several semesters may signal problems.  In particular, students need to attend to the percentage of courses that they are able to complete. More information is available in the "Quantitative Standards" section of the Academic Bulletin.

If students need to withdraw (1) after the deadline, (2) from more than the permitted two courses, or (3) for health reasons, they may petition the Sub-committee on Academic Standards. Students should not assume they will be permitted to withdraw, but instead they should continue to participate in the course until the Academic Standards Committee informs them of a decision about their petition.