Academic Notification

Students who miss classes due to crises or extenuating circumstances may need notification sent to their professors. While it is completely at the professor's discretion whether they allow for making up work or excused absences, Student Outreach & Support offers outreach to professors and additional support to students dealing with these situations. Please see below for the steps for requesting academic notification.

 Student Contact with Professors

How to Talk to Professors About Class Absences

Students must first talk to their professors to help bridge the gap between a crisis situation, illness or injury, or any challenges that may impact their ability to attend classes, focus on class work, and/or meet academic deadlines.

Before contacting Student Outreach & Support for academic notification, students should first:

  • Email their professors to inform them of the situation.

  • Students may use discrete language such as: medical reasons, unexpected non-academic related concern, personal situation, on-going health needs, family situation/emergency, etc.

  • Utilize their professor's office hours or ask to schedule an appointment to follow-up about missed coursework.

  • Share relevant documentation to verify dates and situations, such as a letter from a doctor or an obituary.

  • Plan ahead to discuss missed work such as quizzes, assignments, exams, and class participation.

  • Work to create an action plan for completing necessary work with their professor after meeting/talking.

  • Continue to follow-up with their professors should there be any additional missed classes


Sample Email to Professors

Dear Professor Smith,

I am writing to share with you that I have not been able to attend your class (Course name/UTCID) on the following dates (Insert dates here) due to (insert situation here; i.e. illness/flu). I am sorry that I have not been able to attend class, however the situation was unexpected.  I have been trying to catch-up on course work as best as possible and am able to provide documentation to verify my situation, if needed.

Can we set up a time to meet and discuss missed work and possible next steps?

Thank you in advance for your time and consideration. I look forward to talking to you soon, when you are next available.


Your name 

Request for Academic Notification

If a student is unable to resolve the issue after speaking to their professors, or their professors require further documentation from the Office of the Dean of Students, then they may submit a formal request for academic notification to Student Outreach & Support.  The notifications sent will include generic and discrete language to describe the reason for the absence(s).  

It will be at the professor's discretion to excuse absences or class work, even with an absence notification from our office. It is also vital for students to follow up with their professors after our academic notification is sent in order to arrange making up class work and assignments.

To request academic notification be sent, call (423) 425-4301 or e-mail to setup an appointment. 

If a student is struggling with a chronic or ongoing medical issue, they should contact the Disability Resource Center for further accommodations. 

Examples of Crises/Extenuating Circumstances

Examples of Non-Emergency Situations

  • Doctor's appointments

  • Family celebrations (birthdays, reunions, graduations, etc.)

  • Weddings

  • Job interviews

  • Roommate conflicts