Attendance Accommodation Guide

The Attendance Accommodation is approved by the student’s Accessibility Counsellor on the basis of documentation from a Regulated Health Care Professional (e.g., physician, psychologist, etc.). Given the episodic nature of the student’s disability, the student may, on occasion, be required to miss courses. The attendance accommodation is not a standing accommodation and should be requested on a case-by-case basis. All students are expected to meet the learning outcomes of a course, and to complete the required assignments and assessments in a course, even if unable to attend a course, on occasion, due to a disability-related reason. Extended absences may affect a student’s ability to participate in, and successfully meet, the learning outcomes of a course. A student’s program determines when the number of absences is considered extended and has negatively impacted the student’s ability to meet course learning outcomes.

Student Responsibilities:

  • Provide Accessible Learning Services with documentation from a Regulated Healthcare Professional indicating that occasional disability-related absences may occur
  • Arrange to meet with professors/instructors to discuss the best way to contact professors/instructors if an absence due to a disability-related reason is required
  • If a disability-related absence is known ahead of time, student needs to contact the professor to discuss the upcoming absence and to determine the best way to make up missed in-course assignments, quizzes, or tests
  • If it is not possible to inform professors/instructors in advance of an absence, notification of the absence should be given by the student as soon as possible after an absence
  • Keep Accessible Learning Services informed of disability-related absences as a pattern of absences will require timely, proactive intervention and support from Accessible Learning Services and program area
  • It is recommended that students contact a peer to receive notes from a lecture that is missed due to a disability-related reason

Accessible Learning Services Responsibilities

  • Identify the need for the Attendance Accommodation on the student’s Accommodation Letter
  • Refer students to the Attendance Accommodation Guide for more information on how to use the Attendance Accommodation
  • Act as a resource for professors/instructors and students regarding a student’s use of the Attendance Accommodation

Professor/Instructor Responsibilities

  • Accept the disability-related attendance accommodation request in good faith
  • Avoid requesting specific information regarding the nature of a student’s disability as students are not required to disclose this information when requesting the Attendance Accommodation
  • Documentation from the student’s Registered Healthcare Professional that confirms the need for the Attendance Accommodation is on file with Accessible Learning Services. It is not necessary for Professors/Instructors to request additional documentation from the student when the Attendance Accommodation is requested with the exception of missed major tests and exams (e.g., midterms, finals) where additional documentation may be required as per program policy
  • When the Attendance Accommodation is requested, students should not be deducted marks if a course participation grade is assigned for the course. An alternative way to meet the participation requirement can be considered where possible
  • Professors/Instructors should provide students with information regarding program policies and expectations around attendance and program polices regarding submission of documentation when a major test, exam, or coursework component is missed
  • When absences are determined to be extended, assist the student and Accessible Learning Services with determining whether a student’s absences have impacted the student’s ability to meet the learning outcomes of a course
  • Consult with the student and Accessibility Counsellor if there are questions about the Attendance Accommodation

Absences from Lab-Based Classes

  • Due to program policies, requirements, resources, and course scheduling, students should discuss with professors/instructors in advance of using the Attendance Accommodation, to determine what options, if any, may be available for missed lab-based classes within a course. Examples of Lab-based classes include engineering labs and healthcare simulation labs
  • In some lab-based courses that incorporate problem-based group learning assignments, program policies may limit the number of classes that can be missed, and a pattern of missed classes may result in a student being unable to meet the learning outcomes of a course. In some programs, there may not be an opportunity to replicate lab-based classes
  • Students are to provide notice to professors/instructors of their absence from a lab-based class for a disability-related reason, in advance when possible, or as soon as possible after a lab-based class has been missed

Absences from Problem-Based Learning (PBL) Classes in Healthcare Programs

  • In classes that incorporate problem-based, small group activities and assignments, program policies may limit the number of classes that can be missed. Given the dynamic nature of PBL group discussions, there may not be an opportunity to replicate PBL activities and assignments, and a pattern of missed PBL classes may result in a student being unable to meet the learning outcomes of a course.
  • Students in healthcare programs that involve PBL activities and assignments are advised to familiarize themselves with their program policies and requirements regarding PBL class attendance, and follow program policies regarding reporting absences from PBL classes
  • Students are to provide notice to professors/instructors of their absence from a PBL class for a disability-related reason, in advance when possible, or as soon as possible after a PBL class has been missed

Absences from Tests and Exams

  • Students who request the Attendance Accommodation and miss a major test or exam (e.g., midterms, finals) due to a disability-related reason must follow their program area policies and guidelines on making up missed tests and exams and may be required, as per their program policy, to provide additional documentation that supports absences from a major test or exam
  • At the professor or instructor’s discretion, an alternate test or exam may be given to a student if a test or exam is missed

Absences from Field/Clinical Placement

Students who anticipate that disability-related absences may impact their field or clinical placement attendance should familiarize themselves with their field or clinical placement attendance requirements and discuss the impact of any disability-related absences with their program field or clinical placement coordinator. Extended absences from field or clinical placement may result in a student being unable to meet placement learning outcomes. Accommodation requests for disability-related absences from field or clinical placement will be discussed on a case-by-case basis. If field or clinical placement accommodations are required, students are advised to contact their Accessibility Counsellor to discuss developing the field placement support form well in advance of placement.

Extended Absences from a Course or Courses or Field/Clinical Placement Due to Disability

When a student’s program has determined that a student will not meet the learning outcomes of a course or courses due to extended absences, the student is advised to contact their Accessibility Counsellor and program Student Success Advisor to discuss the option of withdrawal from a course or courses or field/clinical placement as a reasonable alternative.

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Have Questions? Need Assistance? Want to Book an Appointment?
We are here to help. Contact Accessible Learning Services by email at als [at] mohawkcollege.ca or by phone at (905) 575-2122.