Drexel enforces initial course participation policy  | The Triangle

Drexel enforces initial course participation policy 

Photo by Oron Barash | The Triangle

This summer quarter, Drexel University quietly started enforcing a policy that requires instructors to verify the attendance of enrolled students in their courses. 

The policy, called Initial Course Participation (ICP), is a mandate under the Department of Education for institutions of higher education, requiring them to verify that students receiving financial aid have begun attending their classes. 

In a message shared with Drexel faculty on June 22, Executive Vice President and Nina Henderson Provost Paul E. Jensen wrote, “Over the winter, I charged a working group led by Vice Provost Steve Weber with colleagues from across the Office of the Provost, Financial Aid, Faculty Senate, Academic Information Systems and the Office of the University Registrar with creating a process to bring Drexel into compliance with this financial aid regulation.”  

The summer quarter was a pilot test for this new policy, with instructors asked to take attendance in the first course meeting after the add/drop deadline. Instructors were asked to record the attendance of students who attended classes until the end of the third week of the summer quarter, July 16. Following this period, students whose attendance was not recorded by their instructor were considered as not fulfilling the ICP policy. 

Provost Jensen states, “Beginning with Academic Year 2023-2024, student attendance (ICP) verification will be required for every billable and credit-bearing course for which there is a possibility of one or more students receiving federal financial aid, including both graduate and undergraduate courses and quarter and semester courses.”

For those who do not have verified ICP, the Offices of Financial Aid and University Registrar will follow up, although it is unclear what impact this may have on students’ financial aid. 

Drexel instructors are being highly encouraged to include a statement about ICP in their syllabi, with the suggested message being, “Initial Course Participation (ICP): Class attendance is critical to your success as a student. Missing classes may impact your class success and your federal financial aid.”