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Authorized Absences

Faculty requesting group authorized absences for class trips should allow at least one week for processing of the absence request, depending on the size of the class and the current AA request load that DOS is managing.

In certain situations where an unanticipated class conflict arises, DOS can provide an authorized absence to a student, allowing them to make up missed work for the class without penalty.

Students wishing to request an authorized absence must have a documented circumstance that fits one of the categories listed below, and DOS must receive the request within two weeks of the absence.

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

DOS cannot process authorized absence requests without appropriate documentation. If you have questions about qualifying documentation for a request, please contact DOS at 307-766-3296 or

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wide shot of students sitting on a ridge looking out at the grand teton mountains on a summer day.

The Dean of Students does not issue authorized absences for

  • routine medical and dentist appointments,
  • jail-time,
  • pre-planned vacations, weddings, celebration and other similar events. 

Most absences due to illness must be approved by the individual instructor; the Dean of Students Office cannot issue authorized absences in these cases. However, DOS may provide authorized absences in the case of 1) a diagnosed and medically documented concussion and 2) a severe illness that requires an overnight hospital stay for treatment. Contact the Dean of Students office at 307-766-3296 or with questions.

Anyone requesting an authorized absence must include the W# of the absent student(s) in the online request form. Authorized absences can take several days to process, depending on the overall volume of requests at the time you submit the form.

Any authorized absence request must include supporting documentation. Qualifying documentation depends on the nature of the absence, but must include information about the reason for the absence, and the timeframe of the absence. 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 emailed to the student(s) as an attachment. Students are expected to provide the letter as documentation to any faculty who will be affected by the student's absence. The letter will not include detailed information about the nature of the absence.

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

two students sitting at a table consulting over a mathematics problem.

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 of their appeal submission.

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