UNCP implements new attendance policy
By Ashley Cole
August 30, 2012
|Infographic by Hillary Akers|
|Source: Tom Jackson, Interim Assoc. Vice Chancellor of Information Resources and Chief Information Officer.|
Students hoping to skip the first day of class were met with a new attendance policy.
This semester was the first time students were required to attend the first day of class, or risk being dropped from the course.
The Literacy Commons would serve to facilitate stronger community literacy.
"The big picture for this is the university has had a few bad years with the budget…and we have to plan carefully now more than ever," Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Dr. Ken Kitts said.
Dr. Kitts noted that there have been problems in the past where students have registered for a class but haven't shown up and remained in that class until the final drop date. At that point, nothing could be done with that empty seat so it went unused.
"We began to realize we've got to do better," Dr. Kitts said. "We've got to plan better for our students."
This is when they automated the waitlist. Students put themselves on a waitlist and are notified if a seat becomes available.
"The question for us was what triggers an open seat so the computer knows to notify the student?" Dr. Kitts said.
This is how the Roster Verification Initiative came to be. Academic Affairs asked faculty to take attendance on the first day of class to report who showed and who didn't.
"For students who didn't attend, the first thing we do is compare that against the list of students who have not paid for the semester," Dr. Kitts said.
If a student shows up on both lists, an email is sent notifying the student that they have 12 hours to make a payment or they'll be dropped from the course.
"The last thing we want to do is surprise students, which is why we give them the 12 hour warning email," Dr. Kitts said.
However, students who notified their professors that they wouldn't be in attendance but intended on completing the course were not in jeopardy of being dropped.
Online classes were conducted in a slightly different manner. The faculty were encouraged to post a discussion question to Blackboard that students could respond to. Students had until Aug. 20 to log in to the course and answer a question if one was posted.
According to Dr. Kitts, the process is going along smoothly.
"I get a daily report from the Department of Information Technology and there were only a handful of cases, five or fewer students, who should've been dropped because they showed up on both lists and for whatever reason the system didn't execute," Dr. Kitts said.
It's taking time for faculty to comply with the new process, Dr. Kitts added.
"I understand it's a busy time for faculty and it's a process and it's going to take people time to get used to it," Dr. Kitts said. "The last figures I saw, about half of the faculty were following up in a timely manner after the first class meeting."
Dr. Kitts plans on continuing the roster verification process in the future.
"I think it's a great system. We'll learn from this implementation. We'll debrief and talk to students, talk to enrollment and [DoIT] and see what we can do better," Kitts said.