Thursday, February 22, 2024

Skipping classes a slippery slope

By Jeremy Binning

There are times when the urge to ditch class kicks in. In some instances, it isn’t the worst idea, if you know that nothing important is going on that day. However, skipping one class often leads to the bad habit of getting used to it. In college, attendance policies are based on the professors’ preferences, and depending on the level of the class, it can vary.
Oftentimes, professors notice that students would take the class less seriously if they didn’t enforce an attendance policy. As such, they have to note in the syllabus that students will be in danger of failing the class if they miss a certain amount of days. It’s a smart strategy, but some students feel that it is unfair.
Joshua Carter, a sophomore majoring in psychology, explained how he thinks going to class is a waste of time.
“I always get my work done but attendance policies are often the reason my grades get lowered,” Carter said. “I personally feel that if I get the work done, it shouldn’t matter if I showed up to class or not.”
Carter’s point makes sense, but many times professors design their lectures to give more information to the student than just what the assignment is giving. Lectures are useful for the most part because you never know what the professor is going to be talking about or adding that could be beneficial in the long run.
Students who have graduated expressed the benefits of attendance policies. Michael Eskander, an alumnus who graduated in December 2022 with a degree in information technology, shared how attending class benefited him in his job.
“I used to hate going to class, but I had one professor who was strict on his attendance policy. The class was useful in my career now and I thank him for making his policy strict because I learned valuable information during class time that wasn’t in the assignments,” he said. “Had I missed some classes, I feel like I wouldn’t be as prepared as I feel I am now in the real world.”
Skipping a few classes isn’t the end of the world and it’s always a good idea to give your professor a heads-up in an email if there is a valid excuse. But oftentimes, students find themselves in too deep. One of the best ways to get back on track would be to go to the professor’s office hours to ask what you are missing and what is needed to catch up. A simple conversation with them can go a long way and assures you that it’s possible to get back in the groove of things.
If there weren’t attendance policies, students would be missing out on one of the main essentials of attending school. There are professors who are more relaxed with their policy and have even shown that it could benefit the student more, but if all professors were like that, then classrooms would look like ghost towns most of the time.

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