August 19, 2020

How setting the bar high for attendance can have a significant impact on student’s interpersonal development.

Abstract

 As a fairly new instructor at USU, I wasn’t really sure how much attendance should be weighted in my course. I simply believed that attendance was important for success. I wanted students to come regularly to class so I set attendance at 30%. Over the course of the semester, I found that setting my attendance bar high not only increased overall scores compared to previous semesters but, more surprisingly, higher attendance had an overwhelmingly positive impact on student’s interpersonal development. Students who would never speak in class, began to participate. Those who didn’t do homework regularly, started doing their work. Peers became friends with one another and sought each other out to work on assignments outside of class. As an instructor, I not only want my students to develop in the subject area that I am teaching, but also as individuals who can contribute to their communities. Encouraging attendance by setting the bar high, helped my students develop not only academically but also interpersonally.

*Participants will learn how class attendance is more than just a way to help improve students grades.


Lisa GabbertRachel Mano

Master of Second Language Teaching, Adjunct Instructor

Rachel Mano is a recent master graduate from Utah State University, earning a Master of Second Language Teaching in Spring of 2022. She also earned her BA from USU in 2003 in Spanish. Rachel has been a graduate instructor for USU, teaching Spanish 1010, for 5 semesters and has enjoyed the opportunity to learn and grow as a teacher each semester. She is also the recipient of the Graduate Instructor of the Year award for the World Languages and Cultures department (2022) and was a nominee for the college (CHASS) award (same year).