A funny thing happened this week. A student who’d been skipping class emailed to say she’d been sick and sad because her granddad died. During her absences, she’s missed an exam, a couple of quizzes and was unaware that the class had turned in their first essays last week.
Grandparents dying, cars breaking down, catching the flu, and other horrible life events typically occur during the first weeks of the semester. And when life falls down, students skip class.
Of course, colleges and universities aren't concerned with students' personal life matters. Not really. Human Resource officers aren't concerned with employees who consistently take off.
Research has shown that students who don’t like a class are more likely to skip the class. Students suffering with drug and alcohol addictions also regularly skip class. A student's housing/living circumstance also affects the ability to make it to class consistently.
Students with low GPAs and students with poor college experiences are also really likely to skip class.
While a student’s reasons for skipping class may be real emergencies in his or her eyes, students are rarely if ever forgiven for not showing up to class and not having completed assignments.
Most students, students who believe in themselves and the value of a college degree, are navigating their way to an "A". The first two weeks of school are critical and typically, the remainder of the semester only gets more difficult.
Aside from financial aid purposes, the most mundane reason colleges and universities monitor class attendance is because teachers can't teach students who aren't in class.
Granted, there are some students who can skip class and succeed (eg get A’s or B’s). Research has also shown that those students demonstrate attitudes and behaviors that strike a positive chord with their professors.
Experienced (seasoned) professors aren't tolerant of students who skip class.
Every student begins the semester with an A. Students who've missed class more than twice since the semester began are working to better an F, or swimming against the tide.
Those who've been to class have attendance and class participation to bolster any weak quiz and exam scores.
No professor worth their weight in gold, silver, copper or titanium, wants a student to sit through a college semester starting off with F. That goes against everything college academics believe.
Students with an unwarranted number of absences are a golden when they do the mature and responsible thing, withdraw from the course. There’s no point in hanging around hoping for a C. The promise never to miss another class usually rings hollow.
It should be a well known fact that colleges and universities are a lot more enthusiastic for those students whose highest ambitions are A and grad school, a career in law, medicine or the PhD, versus those who aspire for mediocrity and a C.
Experience has taught me to be wary of those students who only want a C. Students who get C's are students who had a sincerely difficult time mastering the material.
Students who earn D's and F's are students who have skipped class and class assignments far too often.