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Withdrawal without academic and/or financial penalty

If you have experienced serious and unavoidable disruption to your studies where special circumstances beyond your control have made it impractical for you to complete requirements for one or more subjects, you may be eligible to apply to withdraw without academic and/or financial penalty. It is your responsibility to read the information on this page before submitting your application.


Special circumstances

For an application to be considered, you must demonstrate that you have been impacted by special circumstances. and provide material evidence to support the application. Bond University has adopted the special circumstances guidelines as defined by the Higher Education Support Act (HESA) 2003. In order for your application to be considered under special circumstances, you must demonstrate that your circumstances meet the three following criteria:

  1. Were beyond your control
  2. Did not make their full impact upon you until on or after the census date for the impacted subject(s)
  3. Made it impractical for you to complete the requirements for the impacted subject(s)

Circumstances beyond your control are situation(s):

  • That occured not due to your action or inaction
  • For which your are not responsible
  • Which are reasonably considered to be unusual, uncommon or abnormal

Your circumstances must have first been evident on or after the census date(s) for the impacted subject(s). The census date for standard subjects is Friday of Week 4 of each semester. Some subjects, such as intensive mode subjects which run outside the standard timeframe, have different census dates. Please check your eStudent portal to confirm the census dates of your subjects.

You must demonstrate, by way of supporting evidence, that your circumstances directly affected your studies to the extent that it made it impractical to complete the requirements of the impacted subject(s)


Examples of special circumstances

  • An unexpected serious illness or hospitalisation that occurred on or after the census date
  • A pre-existing health condition that worsened on or after the census date
  • A member of your immediate family (mother, father, partner, child, sibling, grandparent) has a serious medical condition which is diagnosed or worsens on or after the census date.
  • A member of your immediate family or close friend passes away and you are affected to the extent that you are unable to continue your studies.
  • You or your family's financial circumstances change unexpectedly on or after the census date to such an extent that you are unable to continue with your studies.
  • You are engaged in employment out of necessity and studying. Your employer unexpectedly increases your hours of employment after the census date, in circumstances where you are unable to object. As a result you are unable to continue with your studies.

The following are not considered as special circumstances

  • Routine demands of employment
  • Family or customary obligations
  • Pre-planned travel
  • Demands of clubs and social or extracurricular activities
  • Unawareness of important academic dates that impact enrolment and withdrawal
  • Misunderstanding or unawareness of the published University Regulations, Policies and procedures
  • Not following correct enrolment or withdrawal procedures
  • Not following recommended academic advice
  • Impact on FEE-HELP, forfeiture of tuition fees or other financial implications

Ongoing and pre-existing conditions

For pre-existing or ongoing conditions that were in place prior to the census date, you must demonstrate, by way of supporting evidence, there was an unforeseen deterioration, exacerbation or worsening of the condition on or after the census date, to such an extent that made it impractical to continue studying.

If you have a disability, illness, injury or health condition that impacts your capacity to complete studies, exams or assessment tasks, please visit the Disability Support Page to learn about services available to assist you.


Student Services and Amenities Fee

If you are successful in your withdrawal application, you remain liable for the Student Services and Amenities Fee which is based on your enrolment at census date.


Application timelines

If you are applying to withdraw without academic penalty, Bond's Academic Regulations stipulate you must submit your application by 11.59pm on Friday of week 7 (AEST) of the semester following that in which you were enrolled in the impacted subject(s). 
For example, if you are applying to withdraw without academic penalty from a subject in the January semester, you must submit your application by Friday of Week 7 of the following May semester.

If you are applying to withdraw without financial penalty, the Higher Education Support Act (HESA) 2003 stipulates you must submit your application within 12 months of the date of withdrawal from the impacted subject(s), and if not withdrawn, then within 12 months from the end date of the semester in which the impacted subject(s) were undertaken.

If you are applying to withdraw without academic and financial penalty, this can be submitted within the one application.


Application checklist

Before applying to withdraw without academic and/or financial penalty it is important that you have read all information on this page and understand the requirements to be considered for a withdrawal without academic and/or financial penalty.

Refer to the checklist below to ensure you are able to meet the criteria required for the application.

Prepare a detailed personal statement, no longer than one A4 page in length, in MS Word or PDF format. Your personal statement must address the following questions:

  1. How do your circumstances meet the criteria of special circumstances?
  2. When did your circumstances commence or worsen during the semester (be specific with dates)
  3. How did these circumstances make it impossible for you to continue your studies in the impacted subject(s)?
  4. If you successfully passed other subjects within the same semester as your impacted subjects, why were the subjects you passed not similarly impacted?

Your application will not be considered without the provision of supporting documentation.

Supporting documentation:

  • Must be dated and written in English. On occasion, documentation in another language may be accepted, for example, illness or death of an overseas family member. In these cases, you will be required to have this supporting documentation translated into English by a certified NAATI translator.
  • For medical conditions or personal/family reasons, must be a true opinion of your circumstances and your inability to complete your studies according to the observations and opinions of an independent registered professional. Retrospective documentation that merely states what you reported to a professional will not be accepted.
  • For employment related reasons, refer to the table below.

Refer to the below guidelines to assist you in obtaining and providing adequate supporting documentation:

CircumstanceEvidence required
New or ongoing medical condition

Official supporting letter from an independent registered health professional. The supporting letter must include:

  • the health professional's provider number
  • the date of consultation(s)
  • the date your medical condition commenced or worsened
  • the severity of your medical condition
  • when and how the medical condition made it impractical for you to continue your studies in the impacted subject(s)
Personal/family reasons

Official supporting letter from an independent registered health professional. The supporting letter must include:

  • the date your circumstances commenced or worsened
  • when and how your circumstances made it impractical for you to continue your studies in the impacted subject(s)
Employment related reasons

A signed and dated letter from your employer with the following:

  • Contact details of your employer
  • Independent employer advice that your work arrangements changed unexpectedly, the date your work arrangements changed and the duration. 
  • Your previous work hours and location
  • Your current work hours and location
  • the reason for changed hours and location

Documentation that will not be accepted:

  • Supporting letters completed by family or friends (i.e. not independent)
  • Photos of injuries
  • Medical reports
  • Prescriptions
  • Pathology reports
  • X-rays
  • Referrals
  • Bank statements
  • Screenshots of social media messages

The University will not contact a health or other professional on your behalf in order to obtain supporting documentation or information.

It is your responsibility to gather all supporting documentation prior to lodgement of your application. Unless prior approval is granted, or the Student Business Centre requests additional information to be provided, no further documentation will be accepted beyond submission of your application.

The University reserves the right to check the authenticity of any documentation provided. Students who are suspected of providing fraudulent documentation will be referred to the University Registrar which may result in disciplinary action.

If you require further information prior to submitting an application, contact the Student Business Centre to discuss your circumstances.

Once you have written your personal statement and obtained all supporting documentation, please submit your application via the eStudent portal by completing the Withdraw No Penalty form.

It is recommended that online forms are accessed via Google Chrome or Firefox.

If you are unable to complete this online form, please contact the Student Business Centre to discuss alternative submission methods.


After you apply

  1. After you submit your application, you may be contacted to provide further information or supporting documentation.
    Failure to provide sufficient information or supporting documentation at this stage may result in an unsuccessful application.
  2. We may contact your faculty teaching staff to confirm if your level of engagement with the subject content and/or assessment tasks prior to the census date.
    Evidence of non-engagement or non-attendance prior to the census date in the impacted subjects may result in an unsuccessful application.
  3. We may conduct an audit of any supporting documentation submitted electronically by contacting your health professional.
  4. Once all documentation has been submitted and other checks have been conducted, you will receive an email to advise of an expected timeframe for assessment. 
  5. Once a decision has been made on your application, you will be sent an outcome notification to your Bond student email address. If your application is unsuccessful, you may be eligible to request a review of the decision within 28 days of the original decision being advised to you..