Classes Missed Memo Guidelines

The Office Student Life staff prides itself on serving students. We strive to exercise our professional judgement and support to assist students when they are faced with unexpected and challenging circumstances. The Office of Student Life may prepare a Classes Missed Memo as a courtesy to instructors advising them of a student’s absence. The Class Attendance Policy can be found in the Student Handbook.

A Classes Missed Memo is not an Institutional Excuse. An Institutional Excuse is limited and is only granted to a student to participate in academic, extracurricular, and athletic events as a representative of the university, or for military service. The Institutional Excuse policy may be found in the NAU Academic Catalog.

Please note that a student served through the Office of Disability Resources may qualify for an attendance policy modification. View the Attendance Accommodation policy for more information.

With the exception of Institutional Excuses, how absences are addressed is within the discretion of each instructor and may take into consideration any number of factors including the attendance policy for the course as stated in the syllabus, the structure of the course, the student’s prior attendance and performance in the course. Only an instructor may “excuse” an absence. We counsel students to work closely with their instructors to make up any missed work.

Classes Missed Memos are provided to students under limited circumstances supported by appropriate documentation. These extenuating situations may include:

  • Prolonged hospitalization
  • Serious illness, accident or injury
  • Victim or witness to a crime 
  • Death or serious illness of a family member

Classes Missed Memos will not be issued in the following circumstances:

  • Personal travel such as holiday travel, weddings, family reunions or job interviews
  • One day absences including for illness or medical appointments
  • Religious Holidays (see Student Handbook)
  • A late request: The Classes Missed Memo request is made more than two weeks after the last day of the absence
  • Jury duty
  • Interim Suspension
  • Legal Issues 
  • Weather related absences or travel delays

Requesting a Classes Missed Memo

Students may request a classes missed memo by contacting Student Life at 928-523-5181 or or by coming in to the office. Students should provide the reason for their absence, the dates of absence, and the date they expect to return to class. Students should also bring in or attach to their email documentation of their reason for absence. Appropriate documentation may include a note from a health care provider, hospital discharge paperwork, an obituary or funeral program, or other documentation that indicates the nature and dates of the absence.