Oregon State University

About Notifications to Instructors

Emergency Notification to Instructors

Many students encounter situations that are unexpected and interrupt their ability to attend classes. Whether it is an injury, severe illness, hospitalization, sudden death of a close family member or partner, traumatic personal event or the like, in most cases students want to preserve their current term academic status and plan to resume attending as soon as the emergency has been managed. Usually the course syllabus will provide class absence information for students.

  • The Dean of Student Life does not excuse student absences.
  • Instructors will make the decision whether to excuse an absence.
  • Whether the absence is excused or unexcused, the student is responsible for making up all work that is missed.
  • A written excuse from a doctor does not obligate an instructor to excuse an absence; university policy states that individual instructors will determine whether an absence will be excused.

Student managed emergency notification to instructors

Students are responsible for notifying instructors promptly about an absence. Email is an acceptable form of communication. The email should contain enough information for the instructor to make an informed decision about any request to make-up course work or to submit an assignment after a deadline. An instructor may require proof of the emergency. Proof could be a physician’s note or obituary or funeral program – the instructor determines what will be required.

Sample:

Dear Professor Lastname,

I will not be in class on _____________ because of _____________. I plan to return to campus on __________ and will contact you at that time about making up the missed coursework. Thank you.

Student name, ID number

Course #, section #

Student Life Assistance Team managed emergency notification to instructors

When an injury, illness, or emergency prevents a student from being able to notify instructors, a request may be made to the Office of the Dean of Student Life’s Assistance Team to provide notification. Whether the request is from a family member or friend, because the Team does not verify the event an instructor may require proof of the emergency when the student returns to class. An Assistance Team emergency notification to instructors does not excuse the absence.

An emergency notification IS:

  • An e-mail notification from the Student Life Assistance Team or Student Care Team to a student's faculty members and academic advisers that is copied to the student's onid email address
  • An announcement of an emergency situation that has taken a student away from campus/classes (their own hospitalization, assault, accident, etc.)
  • A source of information for instructors
  • A written reminder for students that they should work with instructors to figure out how they will proceed in the course when an absence has occurred
  • Sent when a student can't notify instructors him/herself.

An emergency notification from the Student Life Assistance Team is NOT

  • A notification for non-emergency situations (car problems, planned absences, minor illnesses, a past absence)
  • A requirement for students
  • A request or mandate to excuse an absence (that is left to the professor to determine)
  • Verification of the situation
  • Sent when a student is able to notify or has notified instructors him/herself

Assistance Team notifications to instructors are copied to the student’s onid email account and usually copied to the student’s academic advisor for wrap around care.

 

Non-Emergency Notifications to Instructors

Students also may encounter a non-emergency situation such as moderate illness or family situation that causes class absence (no-show of child care provider, child’s illness, parent’s surgery, funeral).  Students are responsible for notifying instructors promptly about an absence. Email is an acceptable form of communication. The email should contain enough information for the instructor to make an informed decision about any request to make-up course work or submit an assignment after a deadline. The Student Life Assistance Team does not provide non-emergency notifications to instructors.

Student managed non-emergency notification to instructors

Sample:

Dear Professor Lastname,

I will not be in class on _____________ because of _____________.  I plan to return to campus on __________ and will contact you at that time about making up the missed coursework. Thank you.

Student name, ID number

Course #, section #

Other about class absences:

  • To protect confidentiality of student health records, Student Health Services does not provide written excuses to explain a student's absence from class. For more information, refer to Student Health Services' medical excuse policy.
  • In the event of widespread illness, the University's absence policy will not change but the University will release recommendations to encourage instructors to be as flexible as possible when working with students who are ill to ensure that their academic progress will not be unduly compromised.
  • Student Jury Duty Service may cause class absence.
  • Students seeking religious accommodations for certain class absences may contact the Office of Equity and Inclusion, 526 Kerr Administration Building, Phone: 541-737-3556, Email Office of Inclusion and Equity.

Contact Info

Dean of Student Life A200 Kerr Administration Building Corvallis, OR 97331-2133 (541) 737-8748 (541) 737-9160 Email Us
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