Adams School of Dentistry: Dental Hygiene Program Attendance Policy


Adams School of Dentistry: Dental Hygiene Program Attendance Policy


Per University Policy, regular clinic, lab, and class attendance is a student obligation. A student is responsible for attending all labs, clinic/rotations, class sessions, scheduled program events/meetings, and completing classwork, including assignments, projects, examinations, and other course requirements. No right or privilege exists which permits a student to be absent from any given number of labs, clinics/rotations, or class sessions. Excessive absenteeism, as determined by the course director, may have an adverse effect on a student’s grade and continuance in the program. Attendance requirements for each course will be presented to students during the syllabus review on the first day of class.

Guidelines for the Absences

An absence occurs when a student misses a class, clinic/rotation, lab, or any other mandatory sessions from the dental hygiene program. Absences are deemed as excused or unexcused based on the nature of the absence. Absence requests (see below for how to submit) are to be submitted through a link provided to all students. Each absence request submission will be evaluated on an individual case-by-case basis and will be reviewed with fairness in mind. We strongly encourage students to use wellbeing days and days you have unscheduled class and clinic time to make appointments for elective procedures, and other non-emergency healthcare needs (wellness/dental/doctor/medical appointments).  

A student may be excused from attendance for reasons clearly beyond their control including, but not limited to, physical accidents, illnesses (short and long-term), maternity/paternity leave, invasive surgery, and death of a family member, etc.

All medically related absences require a doctor’s note to be submitted. The doctor's note may serve as proof of your encounter related to your doctor's visit. Please note, this document does not imply that an absence is excused automatically.

A request may be deemed an unexcused absence following review of the request. An unexcused absence will result in consequences based on the attendance policy set in each individual course.

Examples of unexcused absence: (Note: This is not a comprehensive list)

1. National board examination

2. National board reviews

3. Clinical board examination

4. Medical wellness visit/checkups (i.e., with primary physician)

5. Elective dental appointments 

6. Vacations

7. Interviews

Important note: 

  • Our program will follow the University’s Absence Policy for:
    • All religious observance 
    •  Significant health conditions and/or personal family emergencies
      • Examples of significant health conditions may include (but are not limited to): Emergency surgery, hospitalization, severe communicable diseases that require isolation (i.e., measles, mumps, tuberculosis, varicella, Covid-19), a severe injury/condition that affects mobility and/or cognition, or acute exacerbation of a chronic mental health issue.
      • Examples of a personal emergency/family emergency may include (but are not limited to): Death or acute onset of a life-threatening illness of an immediate family member (Parent, spouse, child, or sibling) direct exposure to or involvement in a current or recently occurring personal traumatic event, or a dramatic and sudden change to life circumstances.
  • All class tardies and early release requests should be handled by the course director as detailed in individual course syllabi.

How to Submit an Absence Request

For a student to be excused from a course, clinic, or lab, a student should submit a “request for absence” online under the DH Absence Request (accessed via the dental school intranet >> Student Resources >> School Resources for Students).  In addition, course directors must be notified via email regarding absence. While there are rare exceptions, this request should be made BEFORE the absence occurs. When it is not possible to request the excused absence prior to or on the day of the absence, the student is expected to request the absence within 24 hours of the missed session.  Timely notification of the absence is imperative so that course directors, staff, and patients affected by the absence can be notified by the Dental Hygiene Program Director. 

Once the request is submitted, it will be reviewed. Within 24-48 hours, the student will receive a response via email. The request will either be approved/excused or denied/unexcused.  If the request is denied/unexcused, students will be given the option to take the unexcused absence route if they so choose. If this is decided the student should respond within 24 hours so that all course directors and patient care coordinators can be notified by the Director or Student Services Manager. A student who is not able to access the online system is required to contact the Dental Hygiene Program Director during regular business hours (M-F, 8am-5pm). Delays in submitting an absence request may require submission of further documentation and/or result in an Excused Absence being denied (i.e., the learner will receive an Unexcused Absence)


  1. Email Course Director cc: program director and patient care coordinator as needed; this does not count as an approval
  2. Submit Absence Request Online 

Contact Information:

Undergraduate Dental Hygiene Program Director

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Article ID: 135252
Tue 8/17/21 11:17 AM
Tue 10/31/23 1:18 PM
Responsible Unit
School, Department, or other organizational unit issuing this document.
Adams School of Dentistry-Dental Hygiene Program
Issuing Officer
Name of the document Issuing Officer. This is the individual whose organizational authority covers the policy scope and who is primarily responsible for the policy.
Issuing Officer Title
Title of the person who is primarily responsible for issuing this policy.
Dental Hygiene Program Director
Next Review
Date on which the next document review is due.
08/01/2024 12:00 AM
Last Review
Date on which the most recent document review was completed.
07/07/2023 12:00 AM
Last Revised
Date on which the most recent changes to this document were approved.
08/08/2023 12:00 AM
Effective Date
If the date on which this document became/becomes enforceable differs from the Origination or Last Revision, this attribute reflects the date on which it is/was enforcable.
08/14/2023 12:00 AM
Date on which the original version of this document was first made official.
02/01/2020 12:00 AM