When to Withdraw

Dropping a course during the grace period...

The first two weeks of each semester is considered the grace period. During this time, students may drop courses without penalty. Dropped courses will not appear on your transcript. For specific grace period dates, see the academic calendar.

After the grace period has passed, students will be required either to remain in a course, or withdraw by the withdraw deadline on the academic calendar. For withdraws, courses will appear on your transcript with a grade of “W.”

What are the Consequences of Withdrawing from a Course?

As per Doral College Policy, should a student drop three (3) or more courses within an academic year, he or she will be placed on an advising hold and will be unable to re-enroll until cleared by the Office of Admissions and Student Services. But there are other consequences to consider as well. For example:

  • In reference to college admissions, having one withdrawn class on your transcript will typically not hurt your chances of getting accepted. However, if you have withdrawn from more than two (2) courses, this may be concerning to colleges because they may see it as a sign that you have a habit of giving up and are unable to handle rigor. Keep in mind, two withdraws might even be considered too much, depending on the college.

  • You should also be cautious about withdrawing from courses important to your intended major. Withdraws in courses related to your major can hinder your chances of being accepted to your program of study junior year of college, especially if it is a limited access major. These courses are usually math or science courses.

  • You may not know it now, but in the future you may decide to apply to a master’s program, medical school, dental school, or law school. Graduate admissions will review your undergraduate transcript and could see W’s as a red flag for the same reasons mentioned above.

  • Lastly, in reference to your high school, each school has their own dual enrollment policies. Perhaps you signed a contract with your school that mentions W’s. Speak to your advisor and consider any consequences your high school may have in place.

Due to the reasons listed students should consider withdrawing from a course only when they have no other alternative. Students should understand that enrolling in a course is a serious commitment, and are advised to withdraw from a course only when they have exhausted all other avenues and do not feel they will be able to earn a passing grade. In this case, you can request to withdraw by contacting your DC advisor.

So how do I Decide if Withdrawing is my Best Option?

  1. Review the college’s academic calendar and make sure you still have time to drop or withdraw.

  2. Review the syllabus for the course(s) in question. Read the instructor’s policy on late work. Does your instructor accept late work? If so, what is the instructor’s penalty for late work? Determine if you have the opportunity to turn in any missed assignments, but don’t forget to calculate the penalty. In many cases, work that is more than 3-4 weeks past due may earn no higher than an F due to the late penalty. When in doubt or if you’ve had an emergency, contact your instructor. But remember, they don’t have to make exceptions. Make sure to be courteous and make contact in a timely manner.

  3. Calculate what your final grade will be. Estimate what you will earn on the assignments that are left in the course. Be realistic when you estimate—don’t assume you will earn all A’s on all that is left if you don’t think that is truly possible. If your instructor does not allow late work, make sure you leave any zeros as is. Don’t change them in your estimate unless you know for a fact your instructor will accept them.

  4. Use your syllabus or the “Grades” tab in Schoology to find the weights for the different types of assignments that make up your course.

  5. You will need to calculate a “final grade” for each category in the course. Schoology shows the “final grade” thus far for each category. In some cases, that grade may already have been finalized. For example, if you have no more projects left, then the grade will you see for the “Projects” category is already final and complete. But maybe you have one more test or three (3) more quizzes, so you will have to estimate what the final grade in each of those categories will turn out to be.

  6. Use the guide/calculator below to help with the mathematical calculation of your final grade.

How to Calculate my Final Grade

  1. Most courses have their assignments divided into 4-5 categories and each category can have a different weight. The most common categories are: classwork, homework, discussion posts, quizzes, projects, research paper, tests, midterm exam, and final exam. Your first step will be to calculate the average of each category by adding up all of your scores in each respective category.

  2. Once you add all your grades for a category, you will then divide by the number of assignments in that category. For example, if you have five tests with the scores of 90, 85, 100, 75 and 91, the accumulated point total for all your test would be 441.

  3. Divide the total by the number of scores in that category (in this case five) that will equal 88.2 percent. That is your final grade for the test category.

  4. Do this for each category. Remember if there is nothing to left turn in for that category you don’t need to do it as Schoology is already reflecting the finalized grade for you.

  5. Use this calculator http://www.benegg.net/grade_calculator.html to enter the “final grade” you came up with for each category and enter the weight of each assignment category.

  6. This will give you your projected final grade for the course! Feel free to play around with it to see what you need to score to get your desired grade.