Excused Absences

Throughout any given semester, illness and emergencies sometimes preclude students from attending class. However, University Senate Rule specifies whether these absences are excused. Specifically, students are entitled to an excused absence for the following reasons:

  1. Significant illness of the student or serious illness of a member of the student's household (permanent or campus) or immediate family.  The Instructor shall have the right to request appropriate verification.
  2. The death of a member of the student's household (permanent or campus) or immediate family.  The instructor shall have the right to request appropriate verification.  For the purpose of this rule, immediate family is defined as spouse or child or parent (guardian) or sibling (all of the previous include steps, halves and in-laws of the same relationship); and grandchild or grandparent.
  3. Trips for members of student organizations sponsored by an educational unit, trips for University classes, and trips for participation in intercollegiate athletic events, including club sports registered with the university as well as varsity sports.  When feasible, the student must notify the Instructor prior to the absence, but in no case shall the notification occur more than one week after the absence.
  4. Major Religious Holidays.  Students are responsible for notifying the Instructor in writing prior to the absences.  Faculty may indicate in the course syllabus how much advance notice is required and shall use their judgment whether the observance in question is important enough to warrant an accommodation, although the presumption should be in favor of the student's request.
  5. Interviews for full-time job opportunities after graduation and for graduate or professional school.  Students must notify the Instructor prior to the occurrence of the absence.  Instructors have the right to request appropriate verification.
  6. Any other circumstances the Instructor finds reasonable cause for absence.

Students bear the responsibility of informing the Instructor and providing documentation for the absence within one week following the period of the excused absence (except where prior notification is required).

Make-up quizzes and exams should be scheduled for a mutually agreeable time.  If the student has a class during the time offered, the student should inform the instructor.  Students should not have to miss a scheduled class period, nor request an excused absence, to take a make-up exam.  Instructors are required to provide a make-up exam and may not simply calculate the student's grade on the basis of the other course requirements unless the student agrees in writing or the exam in question is a common exam and the department employs a practice known as "doubling up."

Please note that if a student misses one-fifth of the class contact hours due to excused absences, and attendance is required or a criterion for a grade in the course, the instructor may request that the student withdraw from the class or impose an incomplete grade.