Attendance should count toward grade

Attendance Cartoon by Kien Ha


By Erik Luna


Attendance should contribute to a student’s final grade in a class. Some classes I’ve taken here at East Los Angeles College focused entirely on lectures and reading the textbook, which can be regarded to as easy, but it can have its negative impact.

Because there are no points being accumulated throughout the semester, the midterm and final are generally do or die. If students fail the midterm, it generally means that they will not have a chance at getting an A in the class.

Studying is usually a solution, but there are certain circumstances where this does not work.

Test anxiety has been classified by the Anxiety and Depression Association of America as a disorder of when anxiety is built up while taking a test.

According to the ADAA, test anxiety can lead to panic attacks, which can feel like having an actual heart-attack.

Also, fear of failing and a poor test history can contribute to anxiety. This has happened to some students I’ve encountered.

One fainted during a final in my freshman year and another vomited, which in turn caused me to do a poor performance on the test. The pressure that is built up in these types of classes is unbearable.

Yet, there have been other classes where it’s the same thing, but the attendance points and some extra credit every now-and-then help to alleviate that pressure.

Credit for attendance can be the deciding factor in whether a student gets a B or an A, but more importantly it helps students focus and do well on a test.

The only reason this is a problem is because some students take advantage of this. Some students show up and fall asleep in class. They do not read the textbook and do not bother participating in class.

What are instructors to do? It is simple. Don’t give out any extra points for showing up. It is infuriating that by the end of the semester, almost all classes are half empty.

Yet, when the final comes every seat is filled and somehow those who didn’t even bother to show up during the semester get A’s.

If those who did decide to show up to class got some extra points they would be better off than the other students. It is understandable that things come up, yet, not going to class for weeks and still passing is maddening.

It is a sacrifice going to class at times, when work calls, there are family troubles or the girlfriend won’t stop complaining you don’t give her enough time.

Whatever the case may be those extra points are the least that we could be given as students who have earned them throughout the semester.

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