Undergraduate Catalog

Class Attendance

Purpose of Class Attendance and Participation

 Class attendance and participation is an academic commitment assumed by every student enrolled at Gallaudet University. As a bilingual university, Gallaudet’s courses are designed to optimize student-instructor interaction for language access. Class attendance and participation are linked to bilingual robustness and academic success. This policy outlines details related to first-week verification, forfeiture of credit, and excused absences. Any policies established by the University regarding class attendance and participation override school or instructor policy. For additional information about withdrawals on the condition of lack of class attendance and participation, please refer to Administrative Withdrawal (provide hyperlink) policy.

First Week Verification

Students are required to attend the first week of classes for the purpose of verification of enrollment. Students who are registered for class and do not attend the first week of scheduled classes or make a documented effort to communicate with the course instructor will be dropped from the course by the instructor.

Forfeiture of Credit

To earn academic credits, students are expected to adhere to class attendance and participation policies at 75% threshold through face to face, online, and/or hybrid courses as outlined in the course syllabi and communicated explicitly by the instructor. Faculty and/or programs have the right to establish their own attendance policies specific to their disciplines, including requirements for student-instructor interaction for the purpose of learning, skills development, or practice (e.g., lab, practice, performance, and art, etc.). International students should refer to the attendance policy established by Gallaudet University’s Office of International Affairs, which may require an attendance threshold higher than 75% of class sessions.
Students should make every effort to attend and participate in classes, with mindfulness of the policy 75% attendance threshold for forfeiture of academic credits due to excessive absences. To meet the 75% threshold of class attendance and/or participation, please consult these charts for the corresponding number of overall absences before loss of credit.

For 14-week semester:

 Class sessions per week  Total Number of sessions during semester Required number of attended class sessions Overall absences before loss of credits
 1 14 11 3
 2 28 21 7
 3 42 32 10

For 8-week semester:

Class sessions per week  Total Number of sessions during semester  Required number of attended class sessions Overall absences before loss of credits
1 8 6 2
 2 16 12 4
 3 24 18 6

For 5-week semester:

Class sessions per week  Total Number of sessions during semester  Required number of attended class sessions Overall absences before loss of credits
 3 15 12 3
 4 20 15 5
 5 25 19 6

For 3-week semester:

Class sessions per week  Total Number of sessions during semester  Required number of attended class sessions  Overall absences before loss of credits
 5 15 12

Class Absence

Gallaudet University expects students to attend and participate in all classes. There are times when students do miss class due to emergency or extenuating circumstances. Faculty have the right to define the specifics of their course attendance and participation policies consistent with the approved excuse absences, excused absences, and unexcused absences outlined below:.

Approved Excused Absences

  1. University-sanctioned events

    Participation in NCAA-sanctioned athletic events, learning activities required for another course (e.g., field trips with approval of instructor), and university representation obligations (e.g.,, student governance representation, university-sponsored conferences, or university research travel). Absences due to attendance at University-sanctioned events should be verified by written or electronic documentation. A letter sent from the Athletic Director, Faculty member responsible for an event, or Supervisory unit must be sent directly to instructors of participating students at least one week prior to the absence that names the student impacted, the date(s) of the event, and the time that the student(s) will need to be released from class(s) to attend the event(s).
  2. Religious observances

    Absence(s) due to religious observances should be communicated by the student to instructors within the first two weeks of the semester. If a student will need to miss the first week of class due to religious observances, the student is responsible for communicating with the instructor. Faculty may consult the calendars of the University Academic Affairs Division, University Office of Campus Ministries, or Religion faculty for clarification of religious observance obligations. Pursuant to discussion between faculty and student, reasonable extension of time on assignments and/or exams must be given without any academic penalty.
  3. Documented major ongoing medical or disabling conditions

    Students with major ongoing medical conditions or other disabling conditions that will foreseeably impact classroom attendance should register for support services and reasonable accommodations through the Office of Students with Disabilities (OSWD), Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), and Office of Student Success. Documented reasonable accommodations for flexible attendance of classes with the OSWD will be considered excused absences as long as such absences are in adherence with OSWD guidelines.

    In the case of chronic illnesses, a visit to a doctor either at Student Health Service (SHS) on campus or a medical site off campus should be made for treatment and medical advice.

    Students will be asked to obtain a medical note(s) which indicates whether their treating licensed medical provider has determined that absence(s) from class are warranted or not. A description of symptoms, treatment, diagnostics, or patient advice should not be interpreted as a need to be absent from class unless the note explicitly states such a need due to medical necessity.

Excused Absences

Unexpected events, such as significant illness or injury, hospitalization, mental health crisis, a death in the immediate family, emergency, and severe weather conditions may be those resulting in missed classes. Documentation of unexpected events must be provided for the resultant absence(s) to be officially excused.

Unexcused Absences

Unexcused absences may include travel, vacations, appointment conflicts (e,g., routine appointment with doctor, academic advisor, or other instructors), and no reason given.