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Authorized Absence Policy

Dean of Students Office

NEW October 2016! The Dean of Students office has an updated process for requesting authorized absences. All authorized absences can now be requested online using an electronic form. Students, faculty, and staff requesting individual and group absences must include the W number for all students who are applying for the absence, and must upload appropriate supporting documentation. Questions about appropriate supporting documentation can be directed to the Dean of Students office at 307-766-3296 or

Approved authorized absences will be documented in a signed PDF letter that will be provided to the student(s) as an attachment via email. Students are expected to provide the letter as documentation to any faculty who will be affected by the student's absence, and faculty are expected to provide the student the opportunity to make up missed work in accordance with University Regulation 6-713. Faculty with concerns about the validity of an authorized absence approval may contact the Dean of Students office at 307-766-3296 or

Authorized Absence Policy Information

The University of Wyoming’s Authorized Absence (AA) policy is referenced through University Regulation 6-713.  This University Regulation was adopted by the UW Board of Trustees with the last revision being adopted on July 17, 2008.  The regulation states students shall attend the lectures, presentations, and laboratories and participate in field work deemed necessary to fulfill adequately the academic requirements of each class.

To receive an authorized absence for participation in a University Sponsored Activity or for unusual circumstances, such as a personal hardship, an Authorized Absence (AA) may be issued by the Dean of Students (DOS) or designee.  While every student request for an authorized absence is somewhat unique, this office is limited by the language of the university regulation in what constitutes a legitimate request for an authorized absence.  The office considers—with appropriate documentation—and sometimes authorized absences for:

  • 1.University sponsored events (e.g. sanctioned athletic contests that student athletes are participating in, field trips, Registered Student Organization (RSO) activities, etc); and
  • 2.Personal hardship (e.g., retention in psychiatric unit in a hospital, accidents with significant injuries, some weather related closures and no unnecessary travel warnings); and
  • 3.Academic class obligations (e.g. instructor approved conference, field work pertinent to class or course of study); and
  • 4.Unavoidable personal obligations (e.g. court subpoena, jury duty, and military obligations); and
  • 5.Unavoidable family situations or emergencies (e.g. death of an immediate family member, ill child, etc).

The Dean of Students does not issue authorized absences for routine medical and dentist appointments, jail-time, pre-planned vacations, weddings, celebration and so on.  Please note in University Regulation 6-713, item ‘3’ which speaks to absences due to illness which is the decision of each individual instructor and not the Dean of Students Office.

Individual students and as well as group/club/organization/class requests can submit the online form.

Questions regarding Authorized Absences should be directed to the Dean of Students office, Knight Hall Room 128.  Our phone number is (307) 766-3296 or e-mail

IMPORTANT NOTE REGARDING FINALS WEEK: The Dean of Students Office cannot issue authorized absences during finals week for any reason.  If a student needs to re-schedule their final exams they must request the change from their instructors. 

IMPORTANT NOTE ON APPEALS:  Appeals must be presented, specifically described in writing, within ten days of notice to the Dean of Students, 128 Knight Hall, Laramie Wyoming 82071.  Consistent with University Regulations 8-229, appeals may be sought on two grounds: (a) failure to follow proper procedures; or (b) newly discovered relevant facts.  Students will receive a written response within ten business days.

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