Census Date 2

What is Census Date?

The term ‘Census Date’ is thrown around a lot, but what does it really mean? The answer could even save you some money!

Census Date is mentioned all over the university and is even highlighted in the university wall planners! It’s a date you should mark down in your diaries, and highlight so you don’t miss it. Sound important yet?

Census Date is important because:

  • Your enrolment in each unit is finalised;
  • You become financially liable for your units; and
  • It is the last day you can apply for an SA-HELP, FEE-HELP or HECS-HELP Loan.

Why Is Census Date after the start of the Trimester?

Census Date for Trimesters ordinarily takes place at the start of Week 4 to give students a chance to change their mind after enrolment without incurring financial penalty.

Students may decide after a few weeks of class that they’re no longer interested in the course they are enrolled in, they may like to change their units, or realise they need to reduce their workload.

The Census Dates for Year-Long units are different! Check the Principal Dates for those.

What happens if I withdraw after Census Date?

If you withdraw after Census Date, you will still be financially liable for the units.

This means different things for different students. If you paid up front, you cannot receive these funds back. If you have put your fees on your HELP loan, that debt will stay there.

If you have had to withdraw due to special circumstances, you may be eligible for Remission of Fees. For all the information on Remission of Fees, take a look at our blog.

What is the difference between Census Date and the Last Day to Withdraw without Academic Penalty Date?

The Last Day To Withdraw Without Academic Penalty comes after the Census Date. If you withdraw before the Academic Penalty date, you will receive a withdrawn without academic penalty (W) grade. However, if you withdraw after the Academic Penalty date, you will receive a withdrawn and deemed to have failed (WN) grade.

A W will not affect your GPA, however, a WN will.

If you have applied for a Remission of Fees and are successful, the academic penalty will also be removed, changing the WN grade to W.

For example…

It can be a little confusing, so let’s give some scenarios with both dates.

  • If you withdraw after Census Date but before the Academic Penalty date, you will be financially liable for the unit but will not receive an academic penalty. This means you will receive a W grade (Withdrawn)
  • If you withdraw after Census Date and after the Academic Penalty date, you will financially liable and receive an academic penalty. This means you will receive a WN grade (withdrawn and deemed to have failed)
  • If you withdraw before both the Census Date and the Academic Penalty date, you will not be financially or academically liable. You will receive a WE grade (withdrawn early where no fees or penalties apply)

The UNE Principal Dates 2020 includes both of these dates, as well as other important dates for the year.

Where to Get Help

If you have any concerns regarding your degree, withdrawing from units, or your course progress please contact Student Success. The Student Success team are more than happy to talk about your options with you!

Full-fee paying?

If you’re wondering about financial liability when you’re Full Fee Paying – check the due date on your invoice and get in touch with Student Accounts if you have any questions. You can reach them on (02) 6773 2664 or studentaccounts@une.edu.au.

Remission of Fees

If you think you might qualify for a Remission of Fees, get in touch with us here at Advocacy & Welfare. We can discuss your circumstances with you, assist you to write the application and support you through the entire process.  Contact us at advocacy@une.edu.au or (02) 6773 3116. We are also happy to hear more generalised enquiries.


You’re never alone at UNE.