Class Attendance

Regular class attendance is a responsibility and a privilege of university education. It is fundamental to the orderly acquisition of knowledge. Students should recognize the advantages of regular class attendance, accept it as a personal responsibility, and apprise themselves of the consequences of poor attendance. Instructors should stress the importance of these responsibilities to students, set appropriate class attendance policies for their classes, and inform students of their requirements in syllabi and orally at the beginning of each term.

Student’s Responsibility

  1. Knowledge of each instructor’s attendance policy and monitoring his or her class absences throughout the term.
  2. Familiarity with all materials covered in each course during absences and make-up of any work required by the instructor.
  3. Inform each instructor as far in advance as possible when conflicts or absences can be anticipated (e.g., athletic team events, work, medical procedures, religious observances, etc.).
  4. Provide appropriate documentation so that each instructor can make an informed decision as to whether or not the absence is excusable.
  5. Initiation of requests to make-up work missed because of class absences. The decision to assist the student with make-up work, including tests, rests with the instructor.
  6. Follow-up on all notices from the Registrar regarding course enrollment in order to correct registration.

Instructor’s Responsibility

  1. Setting of reasonable regulations for class attendance as appropriate for class content, organization, methodology, and size.
  2. Description of attendance policies in course syllabi and announcement in class, particularly at the beginning of each term.
  3. Maintenance of class attendance records of enrolled students as appropriate for the attendance policy.
  4. Exaction of penalties for unsatisfactory class attendance. Possible penalties are lowering the course grade, including a grade of F, and, in extreme circumstances, dropping the student from the course.

Absences for University-Sponsored Activities

Approved by the Faculty Senate, September 8, 2010

The university recognizes the importance of certain extra-curricular and co-curricular activities (including travel days) that enhance student learning, personal development, and professional growth. Instructors will excuse absences of students for participation in university-sponsored events under the following conditions:

  1. Students who expect to miss one or more class meetings due to participation in university-sponsored activities should:
    1. Notify the instructor(s) at least five class days in advance;
    2. Arrange to complete all missed work in advance of the absence whenever practicable as judged by the instructor(s). When missed work cannot be completed in advance, the instructor(s) should provide students with the opportunity to make up the work. Students should be aware, however, that not all kinds of work can be made up. The instructor(s) have the discretion to deny make-up work if (i) alternative assignments place an unreasonable demand on the instructor, (ii) the original assignment is such that not completing it at the originally assigned time impedes student learning.
    3. Present relevant documentation of participation in a relevant university-sponsored activity to the instructor(s) upon request.
  2. Students who expect to miss more than three class periods of any single course of any kind in a term or more than two consecutive meetings of a laboratory course in order to participate in university-sponsored activities should inform the instructor at the beginning of the course. In the case that the faculty member cannot make reasonable accommodations for make-up work, the student may appropriately be advised to drop the course.

Dean of Students Office Responsibility

  1. Notify each instructor on the student’s behalf when personal reasons (e.g., family emergency, illness, bereavement, birth of a child, military duty, etc.) prevent the student from properly notifying each instructor because of circumstances beyond the student’s control. The student or the student’s representative should contact the Dean of Students Office (336-334-5514) if the student is unable to make direct contact by e-mail or phone with each instructor or is unable to leave word with each instructor’s department.
  2. Review documentation by a licensed health professional and confirm its receipt with each instructor if the student experiences a medical or psychological event that significantly impairs their ability to function successfully or safely as a student.

The student should be aware that assistance of the Dean of Students Office does not change in any way the outcome of the instructor’s decision regarding the student’s academic work, grades and performance in any given course.

Religious Observance

Approved by the Office of the Provost, August 2010

  1. The university allows for a limited number of excused absences each academic year for religious observances required by the faith of the student.
  2. Students must notify instructors of absences in advance of the date of the religious observance. Instructors have the authority to specify, via written notice to students, the amount of lead time required and may require that the nature of the religious observance be specified and the student’s participation be confirmed in writing by an official of the religious organization.
  3. When appropriate notice is provided by a student, the student must be granted at least two excused absences per academic year under this policy and must be allowed to make up or waive work and tests missed due to these particular absences. With regard to any test or other assignment that a student would miss due to notice of a required religious observance, faculty members may require the student to complete the test or assignment in advance of the originally scheduled date of the test or assignment. Beyond the minimum terms and limits of this policy, instructors maintain authority to establish and enforce the attendance policy for the courses they are teaching.
  4. The requirement for students to make such requests for excused absences applies only to days when the university is holding class.


If a student thinks there is a discrepancy between the instructor’s exaction of a penalty for unsatisfactory class attendance and the stated policy or that there is an extenuating circumstance that may affect the instructor’s decision, then he or she should first make a request to the instructor. If desired, the student may further appeal to the Department Head, the Dean of the School or College, and the Provost, in that order.

Cancellation for Non-Attendance

In circumstances in which a student was charged for or received a grade for a class that they never attended, the student should request a Cancellation of Course(s) for Non-Attendance through the University Registrar’s Office. The student is responsible for demonstrating eligibility for cancellation under this policy. Cancellations cannot be processed for students who attended a class, even one time. (Important note: Class attendance for online courses is tracked based on a student’s log-in records and activity in Canvas or relevant online Learning Management System). Requests for Cancellation of Course(s) for Non-Attendance must be submitted within one year of the term in which the courses were taken. No cancellations will be made once a student has been awarded a degree for a course on record previous to that degree’s award. Once verified with instructors, all requested courses will be removed from a student’s registration and will not display on a transcript.