Academic Renewal

Current policy reflected below. Changes to Faculty Senate Policy 58-60  (Academic Renewal) pending implementation. (Note: Policy number 58-60 will change to 54-90.)

Academic renewal permits a former student to resume study without being penalized for his/her past unsatisfactory scholarship.


To qualify for academic renewal, a former degree candidate, student admitted to the Division of Undergraduate Studies with Conditions, nondegree-regular student, or nondegree-conditional student must (1) have a cumulative grade-point average below a 2.00 and (2) have taken no course work at Penn State for a minimum of four calendar years. Enrollment in any credit course through any Penn State course delivery system (resident instruction, World Campus, or Continuing Education) disrupts the required four-year nonenrollment period, even if the student withdrew from the course(s). For example, a student who last attended the University in the spring of 2008 may seek academic renewal to return to school in the summer of 2012, at the earliest. Authorized advisers can determine a student's eligibility for renewal on ISIS screen ARUSBE by entering a semester or session. If the student will meet the criteria for renewal, ELIGIBLE TO APPLY FOR ACADEMIC RENEWAL NOW appears at the top of the screen.

Retroactive Requests

Academic renewal is possible after the required four-year absence from the University for the student who did not request academic renewal prior to resuming enrollment. The student may request academic renewal for course work done prior to his/her return by submitting an academic renewal form.

Repeat Requests

A student may receive more than one academic renewal provided that there is a four-year waiting period before each renewal.

Impact of Academic Renewal on the Student's Record

Courses with a grade of D taken before academic renewal will not satisfy graduation requirements. Courses with a grade of C or better that are approved by the appropriate dean may fulfill graduation requirements.

A notation in the remarks area of the student's transcript indicates academic renewal.

The student's cumulative grade-point average and cumulative credits start anew when he/she enrolls in the first course following the renewal. His/her total credits are recalculated to include only those courses in which a grade of C or higher was earned and which have been approved by the appropriate dean to fulfill graduation requirements.

The student's prior academic record remains on his/her transcript, including all grades and the calculations of credits, grade points, and grade-point averages earned prior to renewal.

Late drop credits are restored; credits used prior to academic renewal are not counted against the student's late drop credit limit.


It is necessary for the student to meet with an academic adviser to consider carefully the advantages and disadvantages of academic renewal in relation to his/her academic record and progress toward a degree. For example, if the student has received a D in a number of courses that would meet degree requirements, the renewal might not be appropriate because it could unnecessarily delay the student's progress.

Degree audits can be produced for academic renewal students who have been approved for academic renewal beginning fall 1996 and after. The audit notes the ineligible courses and will not count them in the "Minimum Credits Required for Graduation." Accurate degree audits are not available for students approved for renewal prior to this time.

Student Action

  1. Submit an academic renewal form.
  2. Complete the appropriate application process to resume studies:

University Response

Authorized advisers can view a student's academic renewal status on ISIS screen ARUSBN.

Students applying for academic renewal receive a response to their request by mail from the Registrar's office typically within a week of submitting the form.

Reviewed: August 2014
Last Update: May 2006

Reference(s): Senate Policy 58-60