Leave of absence

Students can apply for a leave of absence from their study programme for up to one year if this is justified in special circumstances. Leave with special reasons can, e.g. be justified on maternity/paternity leave, adoption, military service, elite sport, or long-term illness.

If a student wishes to extend their current leave of absence beyond one year on the same grounds, they must apply to the Board of Exemptions for an exemption for extension of his/her leave at www.dispensation.dtu.dk. More information can be found at DTU Inside under ‘Study rules’/Exemption, leave and maternity/paternity leave'/Exemption'.

Maternity/paternity leave, adoption, and military service
Students who apply for a leave of absence due to maternity/paternity, adoption, or military service will always be granted one after submitting the necessary documentation.

At DTU Inside, under 'Study rules'/'Exemption, leave and maternity/paternity leave'/'Maternity/paternity leave', you can read more about the student's opportunities if he or she becomes a parent during the study.

Personal illness                                                      
The student can apply for a leave of absence due to any long-term illness that leaves the student incapable of active study, including mental illness. The student must submit a medical certificate as documentation, which must state that the student cannot study due to the illness. The medical certificate must also state how long the student will be or is expected to be ill.

Illness of a close relative
The student can be granted a leave of absence to care for a close relative who is disabled, seriously ill, or dying. Parents, grandparents, children, and spouse/cohabiting partners are considered close relatives. However, other persons may also be regarded as being close. The student must describe why this person should be considered a close person, and it must be documented with medical documentation that this person is seriously ill.

Elite sports
Students can be granted a leave of absence after the presentation of documentation from, e.g. Team Denmark. At DTU, you are considered an elite athlete if you participate at the highest level in the international competition structure within the sport in question and you are therefore also appointed by Team Denmark or similar. Students who practice lower-level sports may exceptionally be subject to the rules if there is a prospect of them becoming elite athletes at a later stage. Find more information on being an elite sports student at DTU Inside under 'Academic offers and guidance'/'Elite sports'.

Other special circumstances
The student can be granted a leave of absence due to other special circumstances that may justify it. Special circumstances are factors that make or will make it impossible for the student to engage in active study. In other words, factors that are beyond the student's control must be documented.

Leave during the final project
When applying for a leave of absence during the final project, the application must be accompanied by a statement from the project supervisor. It is the supervisor who, based on an academic assessment, determines whether the project deadline can be postponed corresponding to the leave period. If the supervisor cannot support a longer-term postponement of the project, the student has used an exam attempt unless the student can provide documentation of illness, in which case the student receives the registration 'SYG' (ill). Read more about this registration at DTU Inside under 'Study rules'/'Exam'/'Assessment forms and grading'. 

The relevant curriculum describes what opportunities the student has to apply for an extension of the submission deadline for the final project, e.g., in case of illness. See DTU Inside under 'Study rules'/'Final projects'.

Submission of application
The student must submit an application for a leave of absence and documentation to the Office for Study Programmes and Student Affairs via Study Administration's email studadm@adm.dtu.dk. The application form can be found at DTU Inside under ‘Study rules'/'Exemption, leave and maternity/paternity leave'/Leave of Absence’.

The application must be sent no later than three weeks within the leave period the student has applied for. A leave period may well be in the middle of a semester. No leave may be granted retroactively beyond three weeks. 

Consequences of a leave of absence
Deadlines relating to the study programme, e.g. the first-year exam and maximum study duration, will be extended by the period of leave, calculated in entire semesters.

All study activities must stop during the period of leave. That includes participation in courses and the submission of assignments/projects. However, students may continue to register for and sit exams in the exam period during their leave of absence. If the student wishes to be withdrawn from exams during the leave, this must be marked in the leave of absence form. If the student has not asked to be withdrawn from exams during leave, and the student, after the end of the leave, has not participated in any exams during leave, the student can contact the Study Administration via student email to studadm@adm.dtu.dk after which exam attempts (EM/Not met) will be annulled.

Students will not receive monthly grants (SU) during their leave of absence. Questions on SU must be addressed to the SU team in the Office for Study Programmes and Student Affairs. Find contact information at DTU Inside under 'Academic offers and guidance'/'Guidance options'/'SU Office.

Students should also be aware that there may be special rules for study activity requirements for study accommodation/dormitories. Questions about this must be directed to the housing association/dormitory company in question.

Students may only exercise their voting rights and retain their eligibility during a leave of absence period exceeding six months if the leave expires at the beginning of the term of office at the latest.

During the period of leave, students must stay updated on study announcements posted by DTU.

Termination of leave prematurely
Students who want to return to their studies before the end of their leave of absence must contact the Study Information using this contact form. Deadlines that have been postponed (first-year exam and maximum duration of study time) are not affected by the interruption, calculated throughout whole semesters.

Students who are in conflict with DTU's rules of study
If the student is in conflict with DTU's rules of study, such as the first-year exam, maximum duration of the study, or used-up exam attempt, he/she must be aware that an exemption application on this matter must be submitted immediately after the end of the leave of absence. Read more at DTU Inside under 'Study rules’/Exemption, leave and maternity/paternity leave'/Exemption'. 

If the student submitted an exemption application due to conflict with DTU's rules of study before his/her leave, the student may withdraw the application as long as a final exemption decision has not been made yet. That means that the Board of Exemptions must make a final decision. Once an exemption decision has been made, this decision (which may lead to withdrawal from DTU) will take precedence over an application for a leave of absence.

Special rules for non-EU-EEA students with a residence permit in Denmark
A student who is a non-EU/EEA fee-paying OR waiver student and has a Danish student residence permit should be aware that his/her student residence permit may be revoked by the Danish immigration authorities (SIRI), even if DTU grants a leave of absence. According to the law, DTU must inform SIRI when non-EU/EEA students get a leave of absence from the University. Revocation of the student's residence permit by SIRI means that the student has to leave Denmark immediately. When the students are ready to resume their studies, they must apply for a new Danish student residence permit from their home country.

Bachelor students: for more information on this, please write to optagelse@adm.dtu.dk. Master students: for more information on this, please write to mscadmissions@adm.dtu.dk

https://studieinformation.dtu.dk/english/rules/leave-change-of-study-programme/leave-of-absence
21 JULY 2024