The matter of class

An NIU student in classGoing to class matters!

One of the most important predictors of success at college is class attendance. Students who attend class regularly have a stronger tie to successful academic performance than scores on standardized admissions tests, high school GPA, study habits and study skills.

In its second year, Attendance Matters is a campus initiative designed to encourage class attendance.

The initiative has two components.

First, Attendance Matters is working to help students to understand the connection between going to class and success in college and beyond. A comprehensive marketing campaign will be in place throughout the academic year, providing information about the benefits of attending class.

“In addition to academic achievement, class attendance is fundamental to overall student success,” NIU Vice Provost Anne Birberick said. “Class attendance contributes to developing mentoring relationships with faculty and learning about opportunities for student engagement outside of the classroom. We need to make an effort to encourage students to go to class.”

The second component to Attendance Matters is class attendance tracking, which is focused on first-year students in 100- and 200-level classes. Faculty are invited to participate by submitting their class attendance records throughout the academic year. These records are compiled to identify students who have developed a concerning pattern of class absences.

Throughout the semester, staff from a variety of support offices around the campus will reach out to those students simply to check in and coordinate any assistance that might be needed to support their academic success. Faculty are able to submit class attendance information through an online roster, as well as the use of attendance logs.

Faculty who wish to receive additional information on how to participate in the Attendance Matters initiative can contact Chris Atherton in the Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost at (815) 753-8377 or cpeddle@niu.edu.

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