Question: “Students frequently ask to be excused from my attendance policy!” “I’ve tried everything and students still skip class!” “What will encourage attendance?”
CITL’s Answer: This question addresses a specific attendance-related issue. There are many others, but no easy answers. Most studies are too circumstantial, but Steven Gump’s research fits this question. Rather than asking why students skip, he asked them why they choose to attend. The reason given most often was that they considered the instructor and/or material interesting. Gump reminded readers that “[o]ne of the responsibilities of teaching is to inspire in students – or at least to attempt to inspire in them – the same interest that led the teachers to pursue the subject in the first place.” To discuss maximizing students’ interest through your interest, or other attendance issues, contact Karen St. Clair, or call x8574.
Gump, S. E. (2004). Keep students coming by keeping them interested: Motivators for class attendance. College Student Journal, 38(1), 157-160.)