Absence and Verification Notices

Most courses have an attendance policy outlined on the syllabus, and this may reference excused or unexcused absences. 

Students missing an occasional class for unverifiable illness or personal circumstances do not require written documentation or verification from the Rutgers - New Brunswick Office of the Dean of Students - Student Support. In these circumstances, it is your responsibility to submit the absence through the Rutgers Self-Reporting Absence website, which automatically generates email notification to the instructor.

Reporting an absence does not automatically "excuse" missed work. It notifies instructors, a courtesy that provides an opportunity for students to contact instructors about missed work. In addition to reporting an absence through the online system, you are encouraged to contact your instructor directly. It is up to the instructor to determine options for allowing the submission or missing or late work.

For extended absences, or when multiple assignments or academic requirements have been missed, our office can provide written communication to the faculty member to verify extenuating circumstances. Absence and Verification Notices (AVN) are primarily for medical and personal extenuating circumstances. They are not for weddings, travel, family holidays or celebrations, or work responsibilities.

Documentation is required in order for an Absence and Verification Notice (AVN) to be sent to a faculty member. Documentation is maintained privately on file and the details are not disclosed in the verification notice.

Examples of documentation include:

  • a doctor’s note - including student's name, diagnosis, date(s) for treatment, recuperation or recovery. 
  • hospital admission and discharge paperwork - including student's name, diagnosis, and date(s)
  • test results
    • NOTE: For at-home rapid COVID tests, write the date on the test and take a picture of it next to your Rutgers ID. Verification for absences will be based on CDC guidelines of 5 days for quarantine. 
    • NOTEIf this is your second time requesting AVNs for COVID within the last 2 months, we require a doctor's note or PCR test for documentation. A rapid COVID test will not be sufficient as documentation.
    • NOTE: Images/videos of a thermometer reading do not constitute documentation.
  • obituary or religious service program
  • police report

An Absence and Verification Notice from the Dean of Students – Student Support does not absolve your responsibilities within a class. It does not guarantee the option to retake a missed exam, submit a paper after the deadline, or have extended absences excused.  A faculty member will often determine options for consideration within the context of your performance - past attendance, participation in class, utilization of office hours or other instructional resources, work completed to date, etc.   

You are expected to disclose all details fully and honestly when requesting an Absence and Verification Notice.  Failure to do so may be a violation of the Code of Student Conduct. 

To begin the process, please complete an Absence and Verification Notice Request Form. You will be notified once the request is complete (typically two business days). Note: If you don't have documentation, or your absences are related to complex circumstances, please see Requesting Assistance for information about Virtual Drop-In Hours or scheduling an appointment.