Absence and Verification Notices

Class attendance, engagement, and participation may be requirements of a course, outlined on the syllabus. These requirements are often integral to the course format, intended learning outcomes, and grading policies. Absences, even for verified reasons, can impact grades and successful completion of course requirements. Therefore, it is important to maximize class attendance. 

Before completing a request for an Absence and Verification Notice (AVN), be sure to read the guidelines and requirements for documentation. 

One or Two Day Absences

If you miss an occasional class, you do not need to obtain verification from the Rutgers - New Brunswick Office of the Dean of Students - Advocacy, Outreach & Support. In these circumstances, it is your responsibility to notify your instructor and submit the absence through the Rutgers Self-Reporting Absence website, which also generates an email notification to the instructor. 

Reporting an absence does not "excuse" missed work. It is up to the instructor to determine if there are options for allowing the submission of missing or late work.

Extended Absences

For extended absences, up to two weeks, or when multiple assignments or major 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 will not be provided 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. An AVN will only be provided with the dates included in the documentation. 

If you do not have documentation, of if your absences are more than two weeks, see Requesting Assistance for Information about Virtual Drop-In Hours or scheduling an appointment. 

Documentation and Absence and Verification Notice Form

Documentation is required for an AVN to be sent to an instructor. 
Examples of documentation include:

  • a doctor’s note, on letterhead with contact information, must include student's name, diagnosis, date(s) for treatment, recuperation, or recovery. 
    • The start date and end date of any absences included in an AVN will be determined by the documentation.
    • Note: as of June 1, 2024 at home covid tests will no longer accepted. Test results, similar to flu tests, will be required. 
  • Rutgers Health Services summary, or hospital admission and discharge paperwork - including name, diagnosis, and date(s).
  • Obituary, death certificate, or prayer card with date of service, religious service program with date
  • police report with date(s)
  • test results with date test was administered.

Documentation is maintained privately on file and the details are not disclosed in the verification notice.

Examples of insufficient documentation: Images/videos of a thermometer reading, rapid/ at home covid tests, flat tires/accidents, prescriptions bottles, plane tickets, text messages, or letters from a relative

An AVN from Dean of Students – Advocacy, Outreach, & 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.  The instructor 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.   

Mandatory Reporters: Staff working within the Office of Dean of Students-Advocacy, Outreach, & Support are required to report incidents of sexual violence to the Title IX Coordinator. Before disclosing this information, you may discuss what this entails, options, and the resources for confidential reporting. 

When submitting informatio for an AVN, 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).