Attendance and Class Absences

A primary responsibility of students is class attendance. Learning is an experience which requires active participation, and the University expects participation of students in all their scheduled classes be they lectures, online collaborations, laboratories, seminars, studios, field trips or other types of activities. It is understood that occasional absences are unavoidable, but the student is responsible for his or her decision to miss a particular class meeting. In deciding to miss a class, a student must be aware that he or she is accountable, nonetheless, for any test or quiz and all assignments, material covered, and announcements made in that class. Faculty are entirely at their discretion about whether or not to  allow a student to make up missed assignments. Furthermore, class participation itself is an appropriate criterion for grading and a student’s failure to participate can be expected to affect his or her grade in the course. Failure to drop or withdraw from a course that the student is not attending may result in a final grade of F.

Religious observances. Requests by students whose religious observance precludes class participation on specific days to reschedule graded work will be honored.  Graded work includes final examinations, scheduled tests, graded written assignments, graded laboratory projects, and graded oral assignments.  Alternative dates will be set by consulting with the instructor or instructors and, if necessary, through consultation with the Office of Academic Services. It is the student’s responsibility to make alternative arrangements as early as possible.

Jury duty. UMW students may be summoned to serve as trial jurors.  Jury duty is a legal obligation and those who fail to respond to a summons are subject to criminal prosecution. The University supports jury service as an important civic duty and community responsibility.  Students who will need to miss class in order to fulfill their jury service obligation should promptly notify all instructors, provide a copy of the summons as documentation of the absence (if requested by the instructor), and make arrangements to complete any missed work. Absences from class because of jury duty service will not be penalized. Students should contact the office of Academic Services if they have any questions or if they need assistance in making arrangements for missed class time due to jury duty service.

Military Service. UMW recognizes and appreciates the important contributions made in service to our country by Active Duty, Reserve, and National Guard members. Requests to reschedule graded work due to short term military absence will be honored. Short term military absence will be recognized either as a result of regularly scheduled drill/training, unexpected training/drill or short term activation/deployment (e.g., National Guard activation in response to a natural disaster or civil unrest). Details on the procedure for Military Service absence can be found in the Directory of Academic Procedures. (Note: military obligation requiring withdrawal from the University for the remainder of a term is covered elsewhere.)

Students who expect to be absent for more than a full week of classes may contact Academic Services to report the absence.  Academic Services will contact the instructors as a courtesy.  There are no excused absences at the University of Mary Washington.  Make up work is entirely at the discretion of each instructor and may require documentation.