Absences and attendance policies vary for each educational lecture or experience. Please review the following information for specific policies.

M1 & M2 Years

ATTENDANCE POLICY: It is expected that students attend all educational activities. Attendance and participation in designated activities are part of your final grade (see syllabus grading grid and OASIS for further detail). The Curriculum Committee may designate additional events as required (for example but not limited to: required training, patient presentations, IPE Day). 

TRACKING ATTENDANCE: Tracking attendance at required activities may be accomplished by: completion of a quiz in class, polling technology, attendance rosters, training documentation in EHR, badge reader swipe, etc.  **The UNMC policy states “Students are required to have their UNMC photo ID on them at all times on campus.”  Students will not be permitted to manually add their name to the badge system.  Failure to register with badge swipe results in an absence.

ABSENCE POLICY: If you must be absent from a required activity, you must notify the Office of Medical Education (OME) BEFORE the start of the activity by sending an email  Acceptable reasons for absence are: funeral of a family member, personal illness, presentation at a scientific conference, or religious obligations.

Step 1: Contact the OME via email ( to notify them of the pending absence.
Step 2: A representative from the OME will respond to you and provide further instructions.
Step 3: The OME will request additional confirmation regarding absence.
MONITORING ABSENCES: Absences from required events are recorded by Office of Medical Education and are tracked cumulatively for all years in medical school. Regardless of the reason students who are absent will be marked as such.  Arriving more than 10 minutes late to an activity counts as absent.  Consequences of repeated unexcused absences could include but are not limited to: the lowering of a grade, a negative Medical Citizenship report, or assignment of a task to remediate missed content.  Absences are reported at the end of the semester by the Office of Medical Education to the Office of Student Affairs.
ABSENCE FROM EXAMINATIONS: Absences from examinations/OSCEs/or practicals are not permitted except for personal illness, funeral of a family member, presentation at a scientific conference.  Students are responsible for requesting approval for an absence from the Office of Medical Education ( prior to the start of the applicable block/core.  Make-up OSCEs cannot be guaranteed and will be addressed on a case-by-case basis.

If you become ill the evening before or morning of an examination, please contact the OME by sending an email to  

M3 & M4 Years

Students missing clerkships/rotations for any reason other than illness or death in the immediate family must request approval at least two weeks prior to the beginning of the clerkship.  No approval will be given for late requests.  Failure to follow this policy will be noted on a medical citizenship form.

Absence from Clinical Clerkships (M3)  
Student duty hours are explained in the Duty Hour Policy (

Absence is not allowed from required clerkships except as follows:

Off-campus electives

Students may take no more than three elective months off-campus during the clinical years, if approved by the appropriate department. The three months does not include the Family Medicine preceptorship. The committee will not approve additional off-campus time to investigate residencies or for personal or social reasons.

Release time - residency interviews

Senior medical students may request up to five (5) weekdays and two (2) weekend days off from each of four (4) non-required rotations/electives for the purpose of interviewing for a post-graduate position.  Absence requests should be made to the elective director at least two weeks prior to the start of the rotation/elective.  This elective director must approve each student’s request individually and determine what make-up, if any is required. 

Approved Curriculum Committee - 11/25/14

Other M4 absences

Senior students may be allowed time off of non-required electives in order to participate in medical meetings or to take USMLE Step 2 CK or CS exams.  The elective director must approve each student's request individually and determine what make-up, if any, is required.

Approved Curriculum Committee - 11/25/14

Religious Obligations

Conflicts between religious obligations and patient care obligations are handled on clinical rotations much as they would be in clinical practice with patient care responsibilities taking precedence unless coverage has been previously arranged.

Departments should make every effort to respect students' religious customs and to adjust the on-call schedule to allow students to observe religious activities as long as this does not penalize other students or jeopardize patient care.

The student must inform the department of his or her request well in advance of the rotation if it is to be incorporated in the on-call schedule. When scheduling conflicts cannot be resolved, however, it is up to the student to make sure that their patient care and on-call responsibilities are met in full. In the event that students cannot obtain coverage, they are expected to take call themselves, regardless of the religious conflict.

Student Rotation/Health Care Sensitivity Option

In the event that a student is seen by a Nebraska Medicine or UNMC physician who is an academic provider, every effort will be made to ensure that said student does not rotate and/or is not graded by the faculty who provided the care.  This policy prevents the potential for conflict of interest in the grading and evaluation of the student.  Alleviation of student distress over sensitivity and confidentiality of health care is also maintained.  The student may exercise his/her right to request a different provider for medical education, within the affected rotation, should such circumstances arise.