Fresh Start Program

Updated: November 2, 2023

The Fresh Start Program provides eligible students the opportunity to regain eligibility for admission to a faculty by coaching them to:

  • Develop the skills needed to succeed at university,
  • Complete a limited number of credit courses in the Open Studies Fresh Start Program in the fall and winter terms immediately following being Required to Withdraw,
  • Establish Satisfactory Academic Standing, and
  • Regain eligibility for admission or readmission to a University of Alberta Faculty.

When you have been required to withdraw, your Faculty determines the options available to you for regaining eligibility for admission/readmission:

  • If the Fresh Start Program IS presented as an option to you, you will receive an email inviting you to complete the registration procedure.
  • If the Fresh Start Program IS NOT presented as an option to you, review other options available to you and consider those alternatives. Contact your Faculty for further information.
  • If you decide not to enter the Fresh Start Program, review other options available to you and consider those alternatives. Contact your Faculty for further information.

PLEASE NOTE: For the 2023 - 2024 Fresh Start Program with study beginning in Fall 2023, students must complete all parts of the registration process, including the admission application form, by 4:00 p.m. (Mountain time) on Wednesday, July 26, 2023.

Program Details

Program Requirements

Students enrolled in the Fresh Start Program must:

  • Submit an application for Open Studies, Fresh Start Program.
  • Pay the Fresh Start Program fee.
  • Successfully complete an online non-credit course entitled "Cognitive Strategies" in the fall term.
  • Attend monthly seminars scheduled in the fall and winter terms.
  • Take a reduced course load of between 18 and 24 credits in a single academic year consisting of the fall or winter terms.
  • Achieve a minimum overall GPA of 2.0 on 18 to 24 credits to maintain satisfactory academic standing.
  • Apply for admission/readmission to a Faculty by their application deadline. Contact your target Faculty to confirm the AGPA, courseload, and other requirements for admission/readmission.

Supplementary instruction or other assistance such as math help, writing instruction, time management, study skills, etc., may be required as assessed by the Faculty from which the student received the RTW, the Fresh Start Program, and/or Academic Success Centre staff.

Program Eligibility

The Fresh Start Program is open to undergraduate students in participating Faculties who have:

  • Been recommended for admission to the Fresh Start Program as a consequence of their "Required to Withdraw" status.
  • Taken fewer than 60 credits (including the work completed during the academic year under review).
  • A GPA of 1.3 - 1.6 at the end of the fall/winter term.
  • Been assigned unsatisfactory standing and are required to withdraw (RTW).
  • NOT been previously required to withdraw from any post-secondary institution.
  • NOT taken any courses at other post-secondary institutions after receiving their “Required to Withdraw” letter and before entering the Fresh Start Program.
  • Have NOT previously completed the Fresh Start Program.
  • Agreed to comply with the requirements of the program.
Participating Faculties

University of Alberta Faculties that recommend students to the Fresh Start Program include:

  • Agricultural, Life and Environmental Sciences
  • Arts
  • Augustana
  • Campus Saint-Jean
  • Education
  • Engineering
  • Kinesiology, Sport, and Recreation
  • Native Studies
  • Nursing
  • Science
Important Notices
  • Completion of the Fresh Start Program does not guarantee admission or readmission to any particular Faculty at the University of Alberta. Students must meet Faculty admission/readmission requirements.
  • If you were recommended to the Fresh Start Program by the Faculty of Engineering, please note that you will not be readmitted to the Faculty of Engineering. You will need to select another faculty in which to complete your degree.
  • If you are appealing any of your grades, DO NOT wait until the appeal process is complete to register in the Fresh Start Program. Instead, register as soon as you receive your "Required to Withdraw" letter, even if you are appealing one or more of your grades. The appeal process takes time, and you should not risk missing the Fresh Start Program application deadline (late July). For information on and assistance with the appeal process, contact the Office of the Student Ombuds.
  • If you are interested in the Fresh Start Program but wish to delay your entry, you should still register for the Fresh Start Program as soon as you receive your "Required to Withdraw" letter. You may delay for one year (i.e., to start the next September) one time only. You MUST discuss this option with and receive formal approval from the Faculty from which you received your "Required to Withdraw" letter.



Academic Support

Provost Provost