At times, students may find themselves needing to miss courses for an extended time away (5 or more days). In such instances, a student (friend or family member when the student is physically unable to submit a request) may request an official absence notice be sent to their faculty members. Student Care & Assistance works with the Office of the Registrar to provide support during absences. 

Absence situations may include: hospitalization, medical emergencies or long-term illness (including physical or mental health concerns), chronic conditions, death of a family member, natural disasters, or military/legal obligations.If the absence is due to testing positive for COVID-19 or needing to quarantine due to being notified as being in close contact with someone that tested positive, please refer 

What is an Absence Notice?

  • An email notification from the Office of the Registrar with information about an absence to a student's faculty members and academic advisor. A copy of this message is sent to the student as well.
  • A notice that an emergency situation prevents the student from contacting instructors directly at the moment and may also prevent the student from fulfilling their academic responsibilities in the interim.
  • A source of information so faculty members are aware of the absence and, if known, can anticipate when to expect the student to return to class.
  • A written reminder that students should work directly with instructors to determine how to obtain materials and/or complete missed course work during the absence, if approved by the faculty member or instructor.

Each faculty member and instructor has the authority to make decisions about the student’s absence and how it will affect the student’s participation, standing, and grades in the class. Student Care & Assistance will often work directly with faculty members to provide support and discuss options or alternatives regarding class. 

After an Absence Notice has been Sent

  • Students should contact their faculty members following the absence notice to begin communicating about their plan for addressing their time away and making up any course-related items.
  • In instances when an absence notice has been sent prior to contact with Student Care & Assistance, a staff member from the office will outreach to the student to offer support, provide access to additional resources to assist during their time of need, and provide options for assisting with the return to classes.
  • Instructors may also contact the student directly to discuss the student's responsibility for completing missed course work as well as providing any additional information that may assist the faculty member in making determinations about the absence.

Additional Absence Notice Considerations

  • An absence notice is not appropriate for non-emergency situations, such as car issues, planned absences (such as a student organization fieldtrip), or minor illnesses that result in an absence less than 5 days.
  • Notices are not sent for absences that occurred in the past. If you are seeking to provide documentation for a retroactive absence, please visit to fill out an absence form.
  • An absence notification does not excuse students from course material, assignments, or exams. It is the sole discretion of each faculty member or instructor to decide what, if any, arrangement or flexibility can be provided in regard to the absence.
  • An absence notice is not required by the University. Some students are able to successfully communicate on their own behalf during personal difficulties and do not need the assistance of the notice.


Absence from Class for Students that have tested positive for COVID-19 or have been notified they were a close contact

For students who have tested positive or are presumed positive for COVID-19 by a healthcare provider:

  • Students are strongly encouraged to complete the university’s self-report form using this link.
  • Students should also:
  • If you live on campus, your name and contact information will be forwarded to University Housing and Dining for follow up. Staff will call you to make appropriate living arrangements. Students who complete their self-report form by 6:00 on weekdays and 4:00 on weekends will receive a call from hall staff that night. Reports received after will be followed up the next day.
  • If you live off-campus you should self-isolate until you meet CDC criteria to discontinue self-isolation

For students who have been contacted by a county health official (such as Johnson County Public Health) that they have been in close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID:

  • Students are strongly encouraged to complete the university’s self-report form using this link
  • Students should quarantine until guidelines from the CDC are met. Quarantine includes: staying home until 14 days after your last contact, checking your temperature twice daily, and watching for COVID-19 symptoms ( 
    • Students living on campus will quarantine in a designated area coordinated by UH&D. 
    • Students living off campus should quarantine in their residence

For students who have symptoms consistent with COVID-19

If you are beginning to show symptoms of COVID-19 as identified by the CDC (

You should leave campus and remain in your assigned living space. You need to speak with a healthcare provider to determine whether or not you will need to be tested for COVID-19. Options for this include:

Please communicate with instructors and supervisors as you usually would for an absence due to illness (please refer to the absence policy and form for non-COVID related concerns above) until you are able to determine next steps with your medical provider. For those testing positive, please fill out the self-report form to assist in additional notifications. For those not taking the test and continuing to experience symptoms, continue to remain home as directed by your medical provider and communicate as appropriate about your absence to instructors and supervisors.

Absence from Class for Non-COVID Related concerns

If a student misses or will be missing a class for a non-COVID related concern they should contact their instructor as soon as possible regarding make-up work. A PDF iconStudent Absence Form may be used to report an absence to an instructor. If the absence is in the future the student should submit the forms to their instructors as soon as they know of the upcoming absence.

If a student is currently absent for a non-COVID related concern and it will be 5 or more consecutive days before they return and the absence is due to illness (non-COVID) or other emergency, please contact the UI Service Center at (319) 384-4300 or If the student is not able to contact the service center, the absence can be reported by someone else on the student's behalf. The service center will send an email with information on the absence to all of the student's current instructors, advisor, and the Academic Support & Retention Office. A copy of the email will also be sent to the student. It will still be the student's responsibility to contact instructors as soon as possible regarding make-up work.

If the 5 or more day absence is in the future or is not reported before the student returns to attending classes then the student is not required to contact the UI Service Center. The student would use the PDF iconStudent Absence Form form to report the future or past absence to each instructor.

Submit a Non-COVID Related Absence Notice Request

As a reminder…

  • Final approval of all absences and arrangements for missed work are determined by the faculty member or instructor.
  • Student Care & Assistance reserves the right to grant or reject notification requests based upon information provided at the time of request. Students or family members may be referred to another resource for additional support if Student Care & Assistance is not able to grant the notification. 

If you have any questions, please contact Student Care & Assistance at or 319-335-1162.