You may think that attending class every day is unnecessary because you can read everything your professor says in your textbook, but when it comes to class attendance, it benefits you in a few ways you might not have thought of.
Attending class will benefit your daily grade. Many professors factor into your overall course grade what they call a participation grade. A participation grade is your chance to receive credit for your active involvement and contributions in class each day. Your professor does not know how hard you study outside of his class, he can’t see the work you put into writing that research paper, or how you stayed up reading those pages he assigned the night before. Simply put, the only way he knows that you are learning is by seeing the effort you display in front of him. If a professor is used to seeing your face, has noticed that you ask thoughtful questions, and knows you are listening because you are writing down notes, he is going to be more likely to give you a high participation grade.
Test material is often taken from lectures given during class, therefore, attending class will benefit your test grades. You cannot always pass a test with flying colors just because you read the last five chapters in your textbook. The more ways you are able to absorb the class material, the better you will be able to understand and recall it later. By actually being in class, you are able to hear important information from lectures and discussions that will be on tests. You are also able to see that information on visual display through PowerPoints and videos. Class also enables you to participate in hands-on learning approaches through group projects and in-class exercises. Your test grades will benefit significantly if you give yourself the chance to learn as many different ways as possible.
Most professors abide by attendance policies, so actually attending class will benefit your final grade. A professor’s attendance policy is how he lets you know if he wants to see your face in your desk every single class day, or if he does not care where you are on most days as long as you take his exams. If your professor is a stickler for attendance, he will probably specify the number of absences you are allowed in case of emergency or sickness. Missing class after you have reached your limit of allowed absences may result in points, or even whole letter grades, being deducted from your final grade.