Attendance and Commitment Policies

Absence and Tardiness

The Southeast Asian Studies Summer Institute (SEASSI) expects students to attend class daily, with the exception of illness and emergencies. If you anticipate any scheduling conflict, please discuss this with your Institute’s program coordinator in advance. Vacation is not a valid excuse for a student to have an extended absence. If a student misses class, it is their responsibility to make up the work and to keep up with the other students in the class.

WISLI courses cover a year’s worth of material in 8 weeks. Therefore, missing one day of class is equivalent to missing one week during the academic year, and can have serious academic consequences.

Note: The tardiness and absence policy of your instructor may be stricter than the policy listed below and will supersede these policies. Please refer to the syllabus of your class for any adjustments to the policies.


One absence per semester is permissible.
Two absences in a semester will result in a grade deduction for that semester.
Three or more absences in a semester will result in automatic failure of the course.

Things to note:

  • Absences on days of exams, projects, presentations, etc. will lead to failure of that coursework. There will be no make-ups of exams, projects, presentations, etc. due to absence.
  • Failure of the first/third/fifth semester course prohibits students moving to the second/fourth/sixth semester course and will result in dismissal from the program without refund.
  • Contact hours for federal grants require that the WISLI programs must end on the last day of class. Requests to leave or take final exams early will not be granted.
  • Pre-program requests for absences will not be granted.

Emergency circumstances for absences can be reviewed on an individual basis.


Arriving to class on time is important for successful participation in the WISLI programs. Being late to class is disruptive and disrespectful to one’s instructor(s) and classmates, and could result in a marked absence or grade deduction.

COVID-19 Related Absences:

SEASSI follows the UW-Madison guidelines regarding COVID-19. For the most up-to-date information about these policies, visit the UW’s COVID-19 Response page, FAQ page, and Quarantine and Isolation Housing Accommodations.

If an instructor or student needs to be absent form class for an extended period of time due to COVID-19, we will do our best to accommodate the situation. Each situation will be handled on a case-by-case basis.

Policy on External Commitments

SEASSI is an intensive program, and we encourage students to budget approximately 8 hours per day for their language studies, including four hours per day of class time and approximately four hours per day of external review and work. Given this, it can be difficult to maintain the same commitment to external obligations as possible during a normal academic year.

For other circumstances, such as unexpected events or illnesses, or anything else which will not overall impact or hinder your participation in the program, we are happy to work with you to establish reasonable accommodations. We encourage all applicants to familiarize themselves with UW-Madison’s policy on access and reasonable accommodations, as well as SEASSI’s absence policy. Any questions can be directed to

Obligations include but are not limited to:

  •     Doctoral research
  •     Part-time or full-time employment
  •     Part-time or full-time caregiving responsibilities
  •     Recurring appointments
  •     Any other activity which limits your ability to devote the adequate time necessary (approximately 8 hours per day) to succeed in this program.