Team-Based Learning Attendance Policy

Team-Based Learning Attendance Policy


Revised October, 2016

Attendance at all Team-Based Learning (TBL) sessions is mandatory. If a student is unable to attend a TBL session, he/she must contact their Advisor in the Office of Student Affairs (312-996-2450) with the reason for the absence. An absence is determined to be excused/unexcused by the Office of Student Affairs Advisor in consultation with the Course Director. Requests for excused absences should be made in advance when possible.

Reasons for an Excused Absence may include: (All excused absences require documentation.) 

  • unforeseen emergencies
  • illness of student or significant other
  • funeral of a family member

Activities that should be discussed in advance and prior to making plans to attend or participate:  

  • research presentation at a conference, professional meeting, etc.
  • participation as a student representative in College of Medicine programs or committees
  • required attendance at College of Medicine courses and events
  • student's own wedding or that of a family member, participation in the wedding of a non-family member
  • required make-up examinations
  • jury duty or court date
  • major religious holidays
  • other circumstances of an extreme, unanticipated, and compelling nature

If an absence for a TBL session is considered excused, the student is responsible for making arrangements with the course director (and/or administrator) to take the Individual Readiness Assurance Test (IRAT). The IRAT must be completed no longer than one week following the TBL session to receive credit. The student's grade for the TBL will be his/her IRAT score plus the team's score from the Team Readiness Assurance Test (TRAT). There is no make-up session for the application exercise, and the student is responsible for all material covered in the session.

If an absence for a TBL session is considered unexcused, the student will not be allowed to make-up the IRAT and will receive a score of 0 (zero) for the IRAT and TRAT for that TBL session. There will be no make-up session, and the student is responsible for all the material covered.

Leaving a session prior to the completion of the application exercise is considered an unexcused absence and will result in a score of 0 (zero) for the IRAT and TRAT regardless of points originally earned.  In the case of emergency, a student can contact his/her Office of Student Affairs Advisor as soon as is feasible, who may deem the absence to be excused after consultation with the Course Director.

Late Arrival:  Since the ultimate goal of a TBL session is to learn and contribute to the team, students are expected to go to the session even if they will be arriving past the posted start time. 

Late arrivals will be handled as follows:

  • A student who arrives late for the IRAT may still receive any points gained within the remaining minutes allowed for the IRAT, and participate as usual in the TRAT and Application Exercise.
  • A student who completely misses the IRAT and shows up late for the TRAT may still participate in the remaining minutes of the TRAT and receive the full amount of points gained by the group for the TRAT. The student will receive 0% for the IRAT.
  • A student who arrives after both the IRAT and TRAT portions have ended will participate in the application exercise.The student will receive 0% for the IRAT and 0% for the TRAT regardless of points earned by the team for the TRAT. 



Approved by the College Committee on Instruction and Appraisal, October 5, 2016.