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Policies & Procedures

Leave of Absence

What is a Leave of Absence?

A leave of absence is a period of time off from studying, where a student is not enrolled in any subject for their course of study but is granted the right to return to study at a future date. At AFTRS, a Leave of Absence can be granted for a period of one year only due to the structured delivery of courses.

During the period of a Leave of Absence, the student status is suspended completely. That means during the period of absence they are not an AFTRS student. This includes suspension of access to AFTRS services and additional services that come with being enrolled in a Higher Education course, such as an Opal card concession.

Given the fixed cohort sizes of some AFTRS courses, Leave of Absence's need to be considered on an individual basis. It may not always be possible to offer a student a place on subsequent deliveries of the course if there are existing capacity issues. The options and issues will be explored with each individual before any application for leave of absence will be considered.

When a student re-enrols after returning from a Leave of Absence they are subject to course rules, curriculum changes, and fee schedules that apply to the cohort they are joining. If a student chooses to apply to take a Leave of Absence from AFTRS, the following must be undertaken:

  1. The student must liaise with both a Student Engagement Manager and Course Leader/HOD for discussion.
  2. Following this, the student will be sent a Leave of Absence form to be completed and submitted to the Student Centre. It must provide comprehensive details as to the reasons for taking a Leave of Absence.
  3. Leave of Absence is only approved at the discretion of the Director of Teaching & Learning or delegate.

Once Approved

Once Leave of Absence has been approved and processed, student status is suspended until the ‘student’ returns and is re-enrolled. The following AFTRS systems will be suspended for the duration of their absence:

  • AFTRS student email
  • Moodle Access
  • Equipment and Room Bookings
  • Library Access - A separate personal account can be set up if you wish to continue to borrow items

Students will not be included in any learning materials or school activities in general. If the student has any of the following items these must be returned to the relevant department or to Student Centre within a week of the LOA approval: failure to return will incur penalty fees.

  • AFTRS Security Pass
  • Locker Key
  • AFTRS Equipment including any items on loan from Service Desk
  • AFTRS Library items

If a student owes any funds to AFTRS Finance, then this must be repaid within 2 weeks of LOA approval.

If there is a failure to resolve any issues in a timely fashion, then the student will not be able to restart their course of study until the issue is resolved.

Returning Students 

Student Centre will contact any student on Leave of Absence at least two months prior to their return to outline any re-enrolment tasks they may need to undertake and confirm re-enrolment. This correspondence will be sent to their personal email address.

Withdrawal from A Course

If you are thinking of withdrawing from your course, take a moment to discuss your concerns with the Director of Teaching & Learning, your Course/Subject Leader, Head of Discipline or lecturer, or the Student Centre.

If you still wish to withdraw from your course, you must complete a Withdrawal from Course form located on the Student Policies and Forms page on AFTRS website or from the Student Centre.

In circumstances where you are unable to complete the withdrawal process, you may be withdrawn from your course by the School, following consultation with you and with the approval of the Director of Teacher & Learning.

If you withdraw from your course after your census date, you are unable to obtain a refund or re-credit of your full fee for the semester unless there are exceptional circumstances. For more information on re-credit and refunds of fees see the Financial Support page. 

If you withdraw from your course, you will be required to complete the standard student exit clearance process.


Transfer of enrolment to a separate course and/or stream from which you applied is not permitted. An exception applies where AFTRS may suspend a course and, as part of course transitional and closure arrangements, offer a transfer of enrolment to another course for affected students.