Students are expected to attend and participate in all classes for which they are registered. Class attendance/participation is regarded as an academic matter, and the use of attendance records in grading (or for other purposes) is left to the discretion of the instructor responsible for the course. This should be explained in the course attendance policy included in the course syllabus distributed by the instructor. The instructor is responsible for handling any excuses for absences during their class. Student athletes should visit the Center for Student Athletic Services for more information.

Let Your Professor Know Ahead of Time

Sometimes life’s circumstances can cause a student to miss a class. When this happens, it’s always best to let the class’s instructor know of the absence ahead of time. Below is an example email that students can send to professors to alert them of the impending absence.

“Dear Instructor,

I will be missing your course [CRN] from [date] until [date] due to [reason] and I would like to request your allowance in making up any missed work. Additionally, I have reviewed the syllabus and understand your policy is X. Due to the extenuating circumstance, I would also like to request your consideration in excusing this/these absence(s). I will send documentation from [doctor/travels/parents/obituary/etc.] as soon as I am able. If you have any questions, please let me know.

Thank you for your time and consideration,

[your name]


Student Care and Well-Being Absence Advocacy

In certain situations Student Care and Well-Being will send instructor notifications to support students experiencing a crisis. Absence notifications are intended to facilitate communication between students and instructors. Absence notifications are not intended to serve as an excuse or documentation to approve missed classes. Absence notifications are sent to the student’s college and then forwarded to instructors by the college.

Absence notifications may be sent in the following circumstances:

  • The student is unable to communicate directly with instructors in a timely manner
  • Student Care and Well-Being learns of an anticipated absence due to bereavement, catastrophic event or other severe crisis and the notification is requested as a form of support for a student in crisis.
  • Student Care and Well-Being learns of circumstances (social anxiety, trauma, etc.) that make it challenging for the student to initiate communication with instructors and the notification is requested to assist the student in communicating about their circumstances.

Students are encouraged to contact Student Care and Well-Being at or 205-348-2461 for any questions or concerns.