Mandatory Attendance at First Class Session and Consequences for Absence: Twin Cities, Crookston, Morris, Rochester

Responsible Officer
Rachel Croson
Executive Vice President and Provost
Owner
Robert McMaster
Vice Provost and Dean of Undergraduate Education
Scott Lanyon
Vice Provost and Dean of Graduate Education
Primary Contact
Jessica Kuecker Grotjohn
Karen Starry
Assistant To
Last Revised
Effective Date

Policy Statement

  1. Students are required to attend the first class session in order to receive important information about the course from the instructor. Students must attend the first class meeting of every part of a course in which they are registered (including, labs, discussion sections, lectures, and other types of class meetings), unless they have obtained prior approval from the instructor (or department, if appropriate) for an intended absence before the first class meeting. Without such prior approval, a student may lose their place in the class to another student.
  2. If a student wishes to remain in a course from which the student has been absent the first day without prior approval, the student must contact the instructor as soon as possible. In this circumstance, instructors have the right to deny access to the class if other students have been added and the course is full. However, instructors should consider extenuating circumstances that may have prevented a student from attending the first class session and from notifying the instructor in advance.
  3. Absence from the first class session that falls during a recognized religious holiday (e.g., Rosh Hashanah) does not require instructor approval, but the student must notify the instructor in advance regarding the absence and the reason for the absence. In this instance, the place for the student will be retained. (See Administrative Policy: Makeup Work for Legitimate Absences: Twin Cities, Crookston, Morris, Rochester for further information regarding absences).
  4. Students are responsible for officially cancelling their enrollment in any course in which they have enrolled and subsequently been denied enrollment. If any such student does not officially cancel enrollment from the course, the instructor has the choice to either (a) assign a failing grade to the student for that course, or (b) request that the student be disenrolled.

Exclusions

This policy is not applicable to the Duluth campus.

Reason for Policy

Students are required to attend the first class session to receive important information about the course from the instructor. In addition, because students can enroll and disenroll for courses on-line, the list of registered students fluctuates. A student’s presence at the first class session is required to clearly indicate the number of students who are committed to taking the course. Instructors can then determine whether any students who were not able to register for a course because all seats were taken may take the place of students who registered but did not attend the first class session.

Procedures

Forms/Instructions

Appendices

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Is it mandatory that a student be removed from a class if the student misses the first class session?

    Instructors are not required to request that the student be removed from the class, but it is their prerogative to make such a request.

  2. What is the necessary process for instructors to disenroll students from a course?

    Instructors can contact their college’s student services department or One Stop Student Services to request students be disenrolled for not attending the first class session.

  3. How does this policy apply to online courses?

    The policy extends to online courses as well as traditional in-person courses. Students must attend the first class meeting or obtain permission from the faculty member to be absent. In the traditional classroom courses, attendance means the student is physically present in the classroom. For online courses that are delivered asynchronously, instructors have discretion to indicate on the syllabus the specific action(s) a student would need to take within a specified time period in order to meet the mandatory first-day attendance requirement. Examples of specific actions students can be asked to complete to meet this requirement for online classes include posting an introduction to an online discussion group, initiating contact with a faculty member to ask a question about an academic course topic, submitting an assignment, or taking a quiz, etc.

  4. How does this policy impact students who add a class during the first or second week of the semester?

    Students may generally add open classes without instructor permission during the first week of the term (fall and spring), and with instructor permission during the second week (fall and spring). Students are not required to attend the sessions prior to registration. Students should communicate with their instructor to determine if any graded work has been missed and what makeup work is available.

Contacts

Subject Contact Phone Email
Primary Contact(s) Jessica Kuecker Grotjohn (undergraduate)
Karen Starry (graduate)
612-624-1328
612-625-2815
[email protected]
[email protected]
Crookston Campus Jason Tangquist 218-281-8424 [email protected]
Morris Campus Janet Ericksen 320-589-6015 [email protected]
Rochester Campus Jeffrey Ratliff-Crain 507-258-8006 [email protected]

Definitions

Officially cancel
Students must cancel (drop) a class if they have been denied enrollment in that course. Students are responsible for dropping a course to officially remove it from their record and may do so online in the course registration system.

Responsibilities

Students
Attend the first sessions of courses for which they have registered, or seek prior approval from the instructor if they are unable to attend. Use the course registration system to drop a course they have registered for but will not be attending.
Instructors
Monitor official course registration lists. Take attendance at first class meeting(s). Respond promptly to students who have contacted the instructor regarding not attending the first class session. Notify students if they have been denied enrollment in a course. Report a failing grade if a student who was denied enrollment in a course does not drop the course, or request that the student be disenrolled.

History

Amended:
June 2016 - Comprehensive Review, Minor Revision. More clearly specifies the responsibilities of both the instructor and the student. Added instructor responsibility.
Amended:
December 2009 - Policy now applies to Crookston.
Effective:
April 2009

Document Feedback

Notification: Please be aware that while we rarely receive these data requests, any information submitted through this comment form is public, including your name, email address and comment/question, unless you are a student.

Add new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.