It’s not surprising that studies show that students who attend class regularly do better academically. AAU wants you to do your best, that’s why attendance is not just encouraged, it’s mandatory. Here are some frequently asked questions about AAU’s mandatory attendance policy (Academic Codex, Section B.8).
Is attendance mandatory?
Yes, it is. You are required to attend every class. This includes also possible make-up classes. Attendance is mandatory because you are registered in a full-time study program (as opposed to distance learning) and because it teaches you good work habits. However, attendance should not be confused with participation in class.
What is the difference between attendance and participation?
Attendance is not graded; you neither collect points for attendance and nor lose points for being absent. On the other hand, active participation is a crucial part of the learning process and is required and graded in some classes. If you miss a class, you miss the opportunity to earn points for participation (and possibly for other assignments as well).
What if I can't attend a class for a relevant reason?
If you cannot attend a class for serious reasons (e.g. illness, serious family matters), please submit an Absence Excuse Request Form to the Dean of Students and attach documents providing the reasons for your absence (such as a doctor’s note). The form and documents must be submitted within one week of the absence. Turn in the completed form to the Dean of Students in office 4.13 or drop off the form at the Dean of Students mailbox in Reception.
(Should you be absent during the add/drop period due to a change in registration this will be also an excused absence if you submit an Absence Excuse Request Form along with the finalized add/drop form.)
Why is it important to have the absence excused?
If the absence is excused, you are entitled to make up missed assignments and exams (provided their nature allows for a make-up – e. g. a test can be made up but participation not). You are responsible for contacting your instructor within one week of the date the absence was excused to arrange for make-up options.
Another important reason for having your absences excused comes into effect if you miss too many classes – please see below.
Can I miss a class without reason?
Yes, you can. However, assignments missed due to unexcused absences cannot be made up. There is no specific number of „allowed unexcused absences“; however, if you miss too many classes (be it excused, or unexcused), you can't finish the course! See below.
Is there a limit for absences?
Yes, there is. If you are absent 35 % of classes, you will not be allowed to finish the course. For 14-week courses with one session per week, this means that you are allowed 4 absences at maximum. Once you reach 5 absences, you will be failed or administratively withdrawn from the course – even if most absences are excused. (This is why it is important to request an absence excuse if you are eligible.)
Bonus question: Do I have to come to class on time?
Yes, you have. Instructors are required to start on time and finish on time; the same applies to you. You might be e. g. deprived of writing a test, if you come after the start. Instructors might also mark you absent if you miss a significant part of a class (by arriving late or leaving early).
Publication date: September 09, 2019