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« A warp in the space-time continuum, perhaps | Main | This Week's Acquisitions »

January 27, 2005



I also see a correlation between grades and attendance, but take the view that as adults their grades is a consequence of their attendance choices. My situation is a bit different from that of Reynolds', though: I am at a private university.


One issue I tend to focus on is the effect a student's absences has on me and the other students in the class. It doesn't help my narcissism when someone seems to think my class doesn't matter that much, and as my narcissism is an important part of my motivation, I don't mind explaining this to a class. It's a factor students don't usually think about, at least consciously, but do appreciate once they get it.

John Thomas McGuire

It's also a question of investment. After all, students usually pay for their higher education, whether by direct payment or student loans. If they miss class, they're really hurting their own investment in a higher degree.


At the University of Washington, the students took the professoriate to court over mandatory attendance and won. The profs at the UW now grade on "participation" because if you're not in class, you can't participate.


If it's a small seminar or colloquium, that's one thing. If it's a huge lecture class, participation means nothing, and if students complete their assignments, their attendance should not be required. Narcissism shmarcissism -- it's not grade school.


If attendance correlates strongly with performance, isn't penalizing non-attendance both unnecessary and doubling the punishment?

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