ESL Program Attendance Policy

  • Attendance is required for completion of the course. Absences are only allowed in the case of a documented medical or family emergency.
  • It is the student’s responsibility to document their absence so that it can be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. It is the student's responsibility to notify their instructor of an absence and to request information on assignments and classwork they missed.
  • The student is still responsible for assignments, tests and exams that occur during their absence.
  • If a student is absent three times and each of these absences is unexcused, a written warning of attendance will be issued. Any further absences may be reason for immediate dismissal from the program.
  • Students must come to class on time. Students will be considered absent if they are more than 15 minutes late. Being tardy three times will result in an unexcused absence. Students are not allowed to leave early.
  • Students who fail to comply with the attendance policy are subject to being dismissed from the program. The decision to dismiss a student is made on a case-by-case basis and can be appealed within 14 days from the dismissal date.
  • Dismissal from the program will result in the cancellation of the student's I-20 and the termination of their immigration status.

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Questions about the attendance policy? See the list of answers below. You can also email us at

No, attendance in itself is not part of your grade, but participation is. If you are not present, you do not score any points for participation. This will be reflected in your final grade.

Yes, absences will be excused in the case of a documented medical or family emergency. Make sure you ask your doctor for a note and show it to your teacher. An emergency is an unexpected situation that requires immediate action—for example, when you catch a cold or you are down with the flu. Regular medical check-ups and appointments can be scheduled on Fridays or after 3 P.M.

You can go to UTC University Health Services in Room 205, Maclellan Gymnasium in the center of campus. They will see you free of charge.

You are still responsible for assignments, tests and exams that occur during your absence. See your teacher and ask how you can make up for it. You can make an appointment to see your teacher during their office hours.

If you decide to miss a class in order to celebrate a religious holiday, you are required to notify both your teacher and the ESL Coordinator in advance. Arrangements will be made for how you can complete the required assignments. This will be an excused absence.

If you miss class, ask your teacher what assignments you missed and what you need to do to catch up. Bring a doctor’s note and show it to your teacher.

If you arrive late but not more than 15 minutes, you will be marked as tardy. Three unexcused tardies constitute an unexcused absence.

If you leave early (less than 15 minutes early), your teacher will mark it as tardy. If you leave more than 15 minutes early, it will be considered an unexcused absence.

 If you arrive more than 15 minutes late and you cannot document an excused reason why, it will be marked as an unexcused absence.

You will be asked to come in to our office on Friday and work on your assignments for the amount of time specified by the ESL Coordinator.

You will be issued a written warning of attendance. You will need to meet with one of the immigration advisors to discuss your situation. Any further absences may be reason for dismissal from the program.

Your I-20 will be cancelled and you will need to leave the country.

Yes, you have 14 days to appeal the decision. The request needs to be submitted in writing within 14 days from the dismissal date and addressed to the Executive Director for the Center for Global Education.

International Student Orientation is mandatory. You must inform the ESL Coordinator if you will arrive late and miss the Orientation. Your absence must be documented (e.g. I-94 form, flight confirmation details, date of visa issuance, documentation from a partnering institution). If you do not show up for Orientation and fail to  provide proper documentation to excuse your absence, your I-20 will be cancelled and you will be reported as a "no-show" in the immigration system. All students must be registered for class by the deadlines provided by the University. Once you are registered, your accounts will be charged and you will be expected to complete the payment of your fees. If you arrive late and miss class, you may be required to attend make-up class sessions. These sessions will be scheduled at the discretion of the ESL Institute. The number of sessions scheduled will depend on the number of days the student missed.


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