Section 4: Attendance

4.1 Eligibility to Attend Classes and Clinical Rotations

Students who do not attend the first day of class or the first shift of a clinical rotation without an excused absence may be dropped from that course, especially if there is a waiting list. Students must not attend a class, a section or a clinical rotation for which they are not registered. Students may also not enroll in a Moodle course for which they are not registered. Course syllabi will list individual faculty member attendance criteria.

4.2 Attendance and Tardiness

In order to maintain educational standards, NUNM expects one hundred percent (100%) attendance at classes and clinical rotations, with a minimum attendance of 80% of all courses. Faculty members may exercise discretion on attendance as well as require students to attend up to one hundred percent (100%) of scheduled classes in order to pass a course. Students may not miss more than two clinic shifts within a given clinic rotation (see Section 6 in the Student Clinic section), and are still held responsible for making up the hours for missed clinic shifts. Instructors may take into account habitual tardiness when calculating a course or clinic grade. Students are responsible for being aware of and meeting faculty attendance expectations, which are detailed in each course syllabus.

Students who wish to petition for an excused absence during the first week of clinical rotations must following the policies outlined in Section 6.2 (Clinic Absences) in the Student Clinic Section of this handbook.

Instructors may take into account habitual tardiness when calculating a course or clinic grade. Students are responsible for being aware of and meeting faculty attendance expectations.

4.3 Examinations and Completion of Assignments

Students are required to complete all examinations and assignments on schedule. Extensions of assignment deadlines are offered at faculty members’ discretion. In cases of illness, bereavement or family emergency, refer to the Petitioning for Excused Absences policy in Section 4.5.

Students who may have a temporary disability that inhibits their attendance and participation in class or clinic should contact the Center for Academic Success for an accommodation.

4.4 Absence Policy

An unexcused absence from an examination or major graded exercise will generally be considered a failure. Students who submit a written request with supporting documentation may be excused provided the student has received written approval from the Center for Academic Success. With written documentation, the following absences may be considered excused and must be petitioned for through the Center for Academic Success:

  1. Illness/Injury (both physical and mental health)
  2. Attending a birth as part of an educational requirement
  3. Bereavement
  4. Family emergencies
  5. Religious holiday/observance
  6. Military service/deployment

Excused absences will not be granted for students who register for elective courses (or external seminars and trainings) that overlap with core classes, including travel courses, unless approved by their program dean(s).

Students who believe they have a disability that inhibits their attendance and ability to participate in class or clinic may contact the Center for Academic Success to discuss potential accommodations.

4.5 Petitioning for Excused Absences

Excused absences may be granted by petition from the Center for Academic Success and/or the Registrar’s Office (clinical only) for severe illness; attending a birth as part of an educational requirement; bereavement; religious observance; and in some cases, family emergency. Attendance at a non-NUNM event, such as a seminar or training that conflicts with a student’s academic schedule, is not considered an excused absence.

Written documentation is required for all excused absences and must be uploaded with the petition form and submitted within 24 hours from the date of the absence, and confirmed in the documentation provided. Students granted excused absences are eligible to reschedule missed tests or postpone assignments without a fee, with the exception of lab classes. Students can contact the Center for Academic Success.

Even with an excused absence, students are responsible for all course material covered during their absence and may be required to complete makeup assignments. Students are responsible for contacting their faculty, and checking the course syllabi for missed exams and/or assignments, and making arrangements as per excused absence approval letter or syllabus requirements. If a petition for an excused absence is granted or denied, the Center for Academic Success will notify the student and faculty of the outcome.

Students with approved excused absences will be given a deadline of approximately three (3) business days to complete missed assignments and/or take exams with the Testing Center. After one week from the approved absences date, makeup exams are no longer available.

An unexcused absence from an examination or major graded exercise will be considered a failure.

Excused absences are usually issued for absences of no more than two weeks in duration. Students who miss more than one week of classes may need to consider a leave of absence. Multiple certified excused absences may result in an investigation into the student’s Satisfactory Academic Progress. Students can contact the Center for Academic Success for assistance.

See Section 4.4 for the NUNM Absence policy and what is eligible for an excused absence.

For clinical absences, follow the Clinic Attendance and Absence Policies as outlined in Section 6.2 of the Student Clinic Section of this handbook.

4.6 Makeup Examinations

Makeup examinations may be offered to students under approved circumstances (see Section 4.4 for the NUNM Absence policy). All makeup and remediation examinations must be completed by the stipulated deadline or a failing mark will automatically be recorded. Students must adhere to the following procedures:

  1. Within 24 hours of the missed class, students must submit a petition for excused absence to the Center for Academic Success.
  2. Students are responsible for informing their faculty that a petition for an excused absence has been submitted.
  3. The Center for Academic Success will notify the student and faculty of the outcome of the petition. Students are not allowed to take a makeup quiz or exam prior to outcome notification.
  4. Students who have been approved to make up an exam or quiz must schedule with the Testing Center to take the exam within the deadline outlined on the excused absence documentation.
  5. For makeup lab exams and remediation exams, the student must provide a copy of the paid receipt to the Center for Academic Success Office prior to taking the exam.

Under extremely unusual circumstance, students who plan to miss an exam or midterm for reasons that do not meet the excused absence qualifications may submit a petition to the Center for Academic Success for the opportunity to take the exam. The Center for Academic Success may refer to the faculty and/or program dean for input in these unusual circumstances, and may take recommendations into consideration when making a determination. Students whose petitions are denied will not be allowed to make up the exam – which may result in failure of the course.

4.7 Religious Observance Policy

The NUNM community is enriched by individuals of many faiths who have various religious observances, practices and beliefs. The university recognizes that, on some occasions, classes, exams, clinic shifts or other required academic activities may conflict with a student’s religious holiday observance. NUNM will reasonably accommodate a student’s religious holiday observance, unless the accommodation would cause an undue hardship.

The following guidelines apply to all students who wish to miss or be excused from a clinical or academic requirement for a religious observance or restriction:

  1. A student requesting to be exempt from requirements, or who seeks an academic modification, for religious observances must submit a written request to the Center for Academic Success at least 14 days prior to the required academic activity that conflicts with the student’s religious observance. The Center for Academic Success will consider whether the requested accommodation would result in an undue hardship for staff, faculty, students or others in the NUNM community. An accommodation for a religious holiday observance will not be allowed if it would result in an undue hardship.
  2. A student who is requesting to be absent from clinic rotations due to a religious holiday observance must follow the clinical excused absence policy in Section 6.2 of the Student Clinic section, which includes notifying the faculty member, the associate registrar, and finding a substitute. See Clinic Section 6.3 for more information.
  3. Requests to reschedule OSCE exams for religious observation purposes must be submitted prior to week 1 of the quarter in which the OSCE is being held, due to the difficult nature of scheduling these exams.
  4. Students requesting time off from classes and/or clinic shifts, to observe a religious holiday, should refer to the corresponding petition for an excused absence policy. An excused absence does not negate the student’s responsibility for material or assignments due during his or her period of absence.

Students are encouraged to contact the director of student access and success or the dean of students if they have any questions about religious holiday observance and these guidelines.

Please see Section 4.5 for requirements regarding petitions for an excused absence. An excused absence does not negate the student’s responsibility for material or assignments due during the period of absence.

4.8 Weeks 11 and 12 Policy

During fall, winter and spring terms, instruction at NUNM is delivered in 12-week quarters. As outlined in the course syllabi, faculty have the discretion to either hold classes during weeks 1-10, reserving weeks 11 and 12 for review/testing—OR deliver new material during all 12 weeks of the course. If new material is delivered in all 12 weeks of the term, the final exam will be given on the last day of the course. If a class is canceled during the first 10 weeks due to inclement weather, faculty illness, or other acceptable reasons, students should expect that missed material will be presented weeks 11 and 12. As material may need to be delivered during weeks 11 and 12, students are expected to be available for makeup classes held during those weeks, even if all of their course syllabi denote week 11 and/or 12 as optional.

4.9 Student Collaboration on Classwork

A “take-home exam” is to be the student’s own work exclusively. Sharing of answers is not permitted and could be a violation of the Academic Integrity Policy as outlined in Section 14.5. A “homework assignment” may be a collaborative effort, depending upon guidelines set by the faculty. For laboratory write-ups the faculty member must clearly set the guidelines. In summation, “exam” means no collaboration; “assignment” means collaboration may be permitted.