Leave of Absence Checklist

Fall and winter semester enrollments at BYU are mandatory for each student while spring and summer enrollment is optional (for continuing students).

The leave of absence was specifically created for these mandatory fall and winter enrollments in case life happens and you are unable to attend one of these major semesters.

Check your Eligibility

A few things to know before skipping a semester.  Be sure to check our Leave of Absence policy to make sure you don't run into any problems when you return:

  1. You have to be a BYU day-time eligible student [DC-Day Continuing]. Check your registration eligibility on the 'Register' tab in MyMAP.
  2. You can take a Leave of Absence for one major semester (fall or winter) per academic year without notifying the university as long as you come back to school the next major semester. An academic year begins with fall semester and continues through the next summer term. Since spring and summer enrollments are not major semesters, they are not considered a leave of absence if you do not enroll.
  3. No paperwork is required to take a leave of absence (unless you discontinue after the add/drop deadline). Just plan on returning and registering for the major semester (fall/winter) following your leave of absence.
  4. Review Special Restrictions to be sure you won't be required to reapply to the university if you take-off a semester.

Leave of Absence Policy

Check Special Restrictions

Newly Admitted Students

  • New freshmen, transfer students, and former students must attend the semester or term they were admitted. This means new students cannot take a leave of absence their first term or semester at BYU. If you want to try to change the semester or term you were admitted to BYU, contact OneStop Student Services (801-422-4104) to see if you're eligible to request a change.

International Students

  • International students need to contact the International Student Services office before taking a leave of absence.

Missionary Deferment

  • A leave of absence can be taken the semester immediately before a Missionary Deferment starts (consecutive semesters), as long as the semester you are absent isn't the first semester you were admitted (see Newly Admitted section above). Following your mission you have to enroll at BYU within a given time period.

Failure to follow the leave of absence policies could result in having to reapply to the university.

Check your Registration Eligibility

If you miss a major semester as a continuing student, just make sure you register for the next major semester within the applicable deadlines. If the system won’t let you register, here are some possible reasons:

  1. Ecclesiastical Endorsement: Ecclesiastical Endorsements are due each year between January 1 and March 15, so if you took your leave of absence during that time, you will need to submit a new one.
  2. University Holds: You can check for any registration hold on your account by looking at the 'Summary' Tab in MyMAP. 
  3. You missed more than one major semester. If you don't enroll in classes before the add/drop deadline of the semester immediately following your leave of absence, you will have to reapply for admission as a former student. Re-admission is NOT guaranteed.

If you attend another school during your leave of absence, remember to send an updated transcript to BYU so your credits can be applied to your BYU record. If you do not attend another school, your academic status will remain the same as it was when you took your leave of absence.

Apply for Scholarships

The university scholarship application deadline for spring/summer and fall/winter scholarships is February 1st regardless of BYU attendance. If you don't want to miss out on scholarships for when you return from your leave of absence, you will need to apply by February 1st.

Scholarship Application

Stay Connected

During your leave of absence it's a good idea to stay connected by regularly checking  My Financial Center and YMessage where important messages that are specific to you will be posted. You are ultimately responsible for reading your messages and taking action when necessary, even during your leave of absence.

Repay Financial Loans

Student loans have a repayment grace period of six months beginning on the date the borrower drops below half-time enrollment. If your leave of absence extends beyond six months (i.e. winter semester and spring term), your grace period ends and you will go into loan repayment.

The minimum credit hours required to prevent loan repayment:

  • Fall/Winter: 6 credits (undergraduate), 4.5 credits (graduate)
  • Spring/Summer: 3 credits (undergraduate), 2.5 credits (graduate)

The Federal Student Aid website provides information about loan repayment.


If you are doing an internship and will be registered for an internship course in your major, it does not count as a Leave of Absence. Reviewing the internship process will ensure you take the proper steps.

Note:  If your internship is not connected to a BYU internship course, and you will not be registered for any other BYU credits, it will count as a Leave of Absence.

Internship Process

Student Employment

You are not eligible for student employment during the semester you take a leave of absence. 

Student Employment Office website


Academically suspended and dismissed students and Honor code suspended and dismissed student should consult with the appropriate office.

Academic Support OfficeHonor Code Office

Military Service Leave

BYU does not have a military service deferment. However, we are anxious to help you continue your studies after returning from military service. If you are required to leave BYU for military service and will miss more than one major semester (fall or winter), contact OneStop at 801-422-4104 to discuss your options before you leave.

Discontinuing School
If you are required to discontinue from your current enrollment, you will want to contact OneStop to make appropriate arrangements. A BYU OneStop Counselor can assist you with your individual needs and circumstances by coordinating many areas of service on campus, including: Admissions, Scholarships, and the Veterans Support Office.

Often students’ orders require them to report before they are able to personally proceed with the discontinuance process; your counselor can help you even after you have reported for active duty.

Schedule an appointment with a OneStop Counselor at 801-422-4104.