Academic Adjustments and Medical Withdrawals

For academic adjustments related to emotional or psychological issues, please speak directly with your counselor/psychiatrist in Counseling and Psychological Services or Social Services. If you are not in treatment at UHS, we are unable to document your situation.

tang tip University Health Services (UHS) doesn't provide doctor's notes. See Flu Guidelines for Faculty.

Verification of Illness

Clinicians are unable to write "Doctor's Notes" and UHS is unable to give excuses for absences, missed exams or assignments turned in late.

For students with serious medical conditions, University Health Services can provide supporting documentation for:

  • Course Drop
  • Reduced Study Load
  • Incomplete Grade
  • Pass/Not Pass Grading Option

We use UHS medical records or letters and records from private physicians to evaluate the severity of your illness and/or disability without revealing the diagnosis or specific medical information. Our evaluation acts as supporting documentation for the Dean of your College; the Dean, advisor or professor makes the actual decision. Drop petitions are available online at most College web sites, along with instructions for submission.

If you would like to pursue this type of academic adjustment, go to Medical Records, Suite 2150, on the 2nd floor at the Tang Center, and complete a Verification of Illness Request form and Release of Information form.

If you received care outside UHS, we will need medical records sent from your provider. Once the documents are received by UHS the information is evaluated and a Verification/Evaluation of Medical Care form is completed within three working days. You can pick up your form at the Tang Information Center (TIC) on the 1st floor at the Tang Center.

If your medical condition is a result of sexual violence, sexual harassment or substance use issues, and you would like to pursue an academic adjustment, please speak directly with a confidential counselor in the Social Services unit by calling (510) 642-6074.

Before You Pursue a Medical Withdrawal

Because a medical withdrawal can affect so many aspects of your academic progress, you are encouraged to first consider other options that might enable you to stay in school, e.g., talk to your college or academic program advisor to explore academic adjustments such as a reduced course load, or taking incompletes, to prevent having to withdrawal from school.

  • If your medical condition is a disabillity, psychological, a very valuable resource is the Disabled Students Program (DSP). DSP is authorized to offer a range of academic accommodations appropriate to your needs as an undergraduate or graduate student. For more information about the Disabled Students Program go to dsp.berkeley.edu.
  • University Health Services (UHS) can provide appropriate medical documentation to accompany your request for an academic adjustment or accomodation; however UHS does not make decisions about your academic status. This applies to graduate as well as undergratuate students.
Students who withdraw from the university will need to be re-admitted by their academic department. Students considering withdrawal should consult with their department to be fully informed on the process for returning to Cal.
  • All students have the option of requesting a personal withdrawal from their College/program. Consult with your academic advisor about initiating a personal withdrawal while a medical withdrawal request is under review. This will lock in a refund date for non-financial aid students in the event a medical withdrawal is not supported.

Other areas that may be impacted by withdrawing from school include:

  • financial aid (For general concerns, contact Cal Student Central, 120 Sproul Hall, at 664-9181. You may also want to speak with a financial aid representative about money that may be owed back)
  • housing
  • registration fees
  • visa/immigration status (If you are an international student (on an F-1 or J-1 visa), you should talk to an advisor at the Berkeley International Office, 2299 Piedmont Avenue, 642-2818.
  • course registration (A withdrawal will cancel all enrollment, current and future). You may attend summer session while on withdrawal status.
  • Student Health Insurance coverage (SHIP) remains active in current semester if paid for.

Late withdrawals in any semester may result in an undergraduate’s inability to enroll in the subsequent semester due to college deadlines. In addition, ten days after a withdrawal is filed with the Office of the Registrar it is irrevocable, so please make sure all of your questions are answered prior to proceeding with your request.

(Explore all of these ramifications carefully before you initiate the medical withdrawal process.)

Withdrawal Process

Medical withdrawals are considered for the current or previous semester. To be eligible for a medical withdrawal you must have registered and paid a percentage of your fees for the semester. If a semester hasn't started yet, you may cancel your registration through Cal Central.

Information Required (See the Checklist for Medical Withdrawals)

  • Detailed medical record information (including diagnosis and treatment)
  • Your UHS medical record may be reviewed with a Release of Information Form
  • If you were treated in the community or at the UHS Counseling & Psychological Services, request that a Health Evaluation Form be completed by your provider. 
  • You may also submit a brief explanation (up to one page) of the reasons you are requesting a medical withdrawal.

Medical Withdrawal and Health Clearance Forms are available at:

  • www.uhs.berkeley.edu (search for Medical Withdrawal)
  • The Social Service's (SOS) office, Rm 2280 at University Services (UHS), Tang Center, 2222 Bancroft Way. You may also call 510-642-6074 to make arrangements to receive paperwork via mail or fax. 
(SOS is open Monday-Friday, 8a.m.-11:45a.m. and 1p.m.-4:45p.m. Our confidential fax # is 510-643-0211.)

All information should be sent to Social Services, along with a copy of the Release of Information form you sign, so your provider can communicate with us.

The above information is reviewed to determine if the medical condition warrants a medical withdrawal. The withdrawal determination is based on the severity and onset of your condition and its impact on your ability to attend classes over a period of time. The medical withdrawal documentation is also reviewed to determine what, if any, medical documentation will be necessary for health clearance when you seek to return to school. The Committee looks for continued treatment over a period of time when evaluating readiness to return, along with current medical status information provided by your treating providers.

Elegibility to Return to Cal

In taking a medical withdrawal a student is agreeing to the terms and conditions for health clearance set out by the UCB Medical Withdrawal Committee, including any requirement for additional medical documentation. The review of medical documentation at the time a student seeks to return to the University is designed to determine sufficient stability and readiness to resume academic studies. The UCB Withdrawal Committee only reviews whether or not you are medically eligible for readmission. For graduate students, only your academic program, with agreement from the Graduate Division can readmit you.

Once your health has stabilized and you are ready to return to school please take the following steps:

  1. Submit a Health Clearance Application. Please fill out completely.
  2. Ask the medical care providers in charge of your treatment to provide information and documentation of your health status. You will need to sign a Release of Information Form for your provider(s) to be submitted with a Health Evaluation for Clearance Form or copies of your complete medical records.
  3. Contact your School or College to make sure you are clear on all DEADLINES and required paperwork.

Contact Us

UHS Tang Center, Social Services
2nd floor, Room 2280
2222 Bancroft Way #2280
Berkeley, CA 94720

Phone: (510) 642-6074

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