Midland U. Tells Students: 3 Strikes And You're Out — Of Class

Tim Goral's picture

Midland University is taking aim at campus slackers with an innovative new student accountability program.

No more goofing off and waiting until the night before an exam to study.

Since last fall, Midland students have been required to attend class. And faculty members are required to administer frequent pop quizzes, assign regular homework or use other techniques to ensure that students read and understand their texts.

Three black marks — for skipping class, failing quizzes or missing homework — and a student will be kicked out of that class. The only way back is by talking the school's top academic officer into a second chance.

It's an unusual policy — one geared to keep students focused in an era where tablets and smartphones make it easy to look up answers instead of following a disciplined train of thought.

“To me, it helps out a lot,” said Josh Gaines, a sophomore sociology major. “I study more, and I'm prepared for class.”

Gaines, a Midland football player who recently transferred from the University of South Dakota at Vermillion, said students are less likely to doze off during class.

Midland University officials say they know of no other college or university with a similar policy.

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