Taking time off from study for local students
You may be able to take time off your course by taking a leave of absence or deferring. To be granted either a leave of absence or deferral as a local student you need to apply and have the application approved.
You can apply for a 'leave of absence' if you want to take time off from study. If you have not already accepted your offer into a Swinburne degree, you can also take time off at the beginning of your course (defer) when you accept your offer.
Failure to remain enrolled in subject(s) each semester, or failure to apply for a leave of absence for any semester in which you do not intend to study, may result in the cancellation of your degree admission. If this happens, you may have to re-apply for admission to your course.
How long can you take a leave of absence for?
A leave of absence is usually permitted up to 12 months in total for the duration of your degree. If you wish to take further time off from your course or wish to extend your current leave of absence, you will need to submit a leave of absence application.
Note: This may not be approved.
There are some important things you need to know if you're applying for a leave of absence, such as:
- If you're a current student, you must enrol as normal before applying for a leave of absence. A leave of absence is not granted automatically.
- We email application outcome notifications to your Swinburne student email address only.
- You may be able to extend your leave of absence. Make sure you submit your extension for approval before your first leave of absence ends. Swinburne usually grants leave of absence for a maximum of one year in total for the life of your degree admission unless there are extenuating circumstances.
- Make sure your application is complete. Swinburne will not consider it otherwise.
- You must give us a reason when you apply for a leave of absence. Common reasons include illness, financial issues, family, friend or workplace issues, or planned work or leisure time abroad.
- Failure to remain enrolled in subject(s) in each semester or half year, or failure to apply for and be approved for an official leave of absence for any semester in which you do not intend to study, may result in cancellation of your course. If this happens, you will need to re-apply for admission into the current version of the course.
Note: If the course structure has changed since your original course admission, some of the units you have completed may not be included in the new course structure.
How to apply for a leave of absence as a local student
Apply via My Enrolment
- Log in to My Enrolment using your SIMS username (student ID) and password.
- Select 'Leave of Absence' from the left-hand navigation.
- Complete the application and select confirm to submit.
Checking your application status
- Log into My Enrolment using your SIMS username (student ID) and password.
Select 'Leave of Absence' from the left-hand navigation menu. Your application status will be displayed underneath the 'Approved' column (including the date when the application was accepted or declined).
A local student applying to take time off from his studies.
Are you a PAVE, OUA or research student?
- Vocational education students: If you can’t log into My Enrolment, you need to apply using the leave of absence application form.
- Open Universities Australia (OUA) students: If you’re a postgraduate or full-fee paying OUA student, you can apply for a leave of absence using My Enrolment. If you’re an undergraduate Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP) OUA student, you can apply for a leave of absence using My Enrolment or directly with OUA. In both cases, your application will be assessed by Swinburne.
- Research students: We encourage you to discuss your plans with your supervisor first, then submit the leave of absence form for research students (login required).
Avoiding fees and penalties
Try to get your application for a leave of absence in before the census date, as you’ll be liable for fees after this date. If you’re an undergraduate or postgraduate student, you will also incur an Academic Penalty (fail) if you take a leave of absence after the academic penalty date.
To check the census date and academic penalty dates for your units, view your current enrolment online in My Enrolment.
Also see key dates for more information about general cut-off dates.
Need more information about taking a leave of absence?
If you need more information about taking time off, download our easy-to-understand help guide.