• October 9, 2015
October 09, 2015, 1:10:39 am *
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Author Topic: AWOL Student  (Read 484 times)
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Posts: 25

« on: Yesterday at 11:16:44 am »

 Seeking advice about AWOL student in a project-based group class, where student has not shown up for two weeks, and has not responded to my or other student's texts and emails and has missed several critical assignments.   Had same student in another class a few years back with the same pattern of behavior.  Do I drop the student from the class?  Let them get an F  for not showing up at the end of the semster? What if they come back after missing two weeks?  What to do?  We have a real-world project with real deadlines, real clients.  I emphasized the first day of class that you can't miss class or procrastinate. 
Happy in my "full, rich adulthood", and as a
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Posts: 17,565

One step at a time

« Reply #1 on: Yesterday at 11:39:11 am »

Can you drop the student administratively? Is that even an option?

If the student has dropped off the radar entirely, might this be a reason to get the DoS involved--out of concern for the student's welfare (particularly if they live in campus housing)? (And, perhaps, to get administrative backing for dropping him.)

Otherwise, you told them that they can't miss class or procrastinate, but what does your syllabus say about the penalties for doing so, and about the point(s) in time at which they will be invoked? (Actually, I probably should have asked this question first. The answer might make the answers to the others moot.)

You must realize that a university cannot educate you. You must do that for yourself, although a college or university is the place where it is likely that you can study most efficiently.

"Is all the same, only different" -- HL
Spending way too much time on the fora if I am now a
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Posts: 476

« Reply #2 on: Yesterday at 12:42:35 pm »

It's in my syllabus that the student is expected to show up to class and/or turn in their weekly homework. Not doing so for two consecutive weeks might be a basis for a W grade (before the drop deadline) or FW grade (after the drop deadline).

If this happens I email the student and ask them their plans. If I don't hear from them after a week or two I usually just W them out of the class.

Senior member
Posts: 494

« Reply #3 on: Yesterday at 12:50:18 pm »

Had this happen in my course (turns out student had done it before, too). I allowed their group to "fire" them for non-contributing. You might want to inform them in writing that they have missed X, Y, and Z and can't pass the class (if this is the case). Otherwise, let them fail. My student ended up withdrawing after I informed them that they would have to do the group based project alone since they had not contributed to the group they joined.
Senior member
Posts: 364

« Reply #4 on: Yesterday at 04:12:32 pm »

I'd definitely send a CYA email so that you have it in writing that they were told that they have missed these deadlines. I mostly work with freshmen, so I would also send an email to their Dean, but I work at a school where that's encouraged for first year students.
a person who likes to believe that what comes around goes around and a
Distinguished Senior Member
Posts: 5,070

« Reply #5 on: Yesterday at 05:33:50 pm »

At my place, we can't drop students from the class. But we do have mechanisms to report the student to the Dean of Students, Academic Services, etc.

I agree that you should CYA by keeping copies of your emails to the student and utilizing any and all "academic warning" systems available to you.


I get cranky in the evenings.
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Posts: 308

« Reply #6 on: Yesterday at 06:15:07 pm »

This won't be of help to you, but something similar happened to me last year and I didn't know what to do. I still don't ,really.

My best student showed up for the first nine or ten weeks of class, turned all her work in on time for that period (there was at least one assignment a week), and then completely disappeared for the last four weeks. Didn't hand anything in, didn't take the exam, didn't respond to emails, nothing.

I know stuff like that happens, but I couldn't (and can't) help but be a little worried about the student's well-being. Is there anything one can or should do, beyond reaching out via email and offering accommodations if they're needed?

By contrast, I also had a student suffering from severe depression that semester, and she sort of vanished too--but she told me what was going on when I checked up, and we were able to work around her difficulties so that she ultimately passed with flying colours.
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