Responding to Academic Concerns

From Lisa Nishii, Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education

Dear Instructors,

Are you concerned about a student’s academic performance, academic progress, or attendance? If so, please help by using the Academic Concern notification system to flag a student’s college about your concernFaculty input about students is essential to our ability to intervene as appropriate in order to provide the support they need for their well-being.

How Academic Concern reporting works:

You are encouraged to submit concerns for undergraduate, graduate, or professional students who are earning low grades*, struggling with course material and not seeking an instructor’s help, missing exams or assignment deadlines without approved extensions, having excessive absences, missing class completely, and/or not making academic progress toward their degree.

All concern notices are routed to the student services office of the students’ home college. Student services advisors will then contact the students individually and urge them to speak with instructors to address the academic issue at hand, and make referrals to campus resources such as Learning Strategies Center or Cornell Health. In addition, concern notices are useful to college academic record committees when reviewing a student’s grades and level of engagement over the course of a semester.

The course drop deadline is March 21st In addition to submitting a concern notice for struggling students, be sure that all of your students understand their progress in your course prior to the drop deadline so they can make an informed decision about their enrollment.

Steps to submit a concern:

  1. You can access the Academic Concern system directly (then bookmark it) or through Canvasby clicking on the Help tab located on the left navigation bar
  2. Once you enter the system, your class list(s) will display
  3. Find and click on the student’s name
  4. Enter your concerns and click “submit”
  5. For additional student submissions, click on “return to class lists” at the bottom of the page. If you need to input more than 20 students for one class, you can send the data in an Excel file using the template available here. Please send the file via Cornell Secure File Transfer to Emily Bednarski,

If you would like to report updates about a particular student (e.g., noticeable progress, continued or worsening concern) or speak with an advising colleague about your concerns in general, please contact the student services office in the student’s home college.

If you believe that a student's academic problems involve issues beyond academic performance, please submit a behavioral referral to the University's Care and Crisis Services team. In extreme circumstances when a student needs immediate attention, contact Counseling and Psychological Services directly at 607-255-5155.

Thank you,

Lisa Nishii
Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education

*Note: The Engineering College has specific grading thresholds for notification and will contact course instructors with relevant information and instructions. Specific grade criteria will also be highlighted on the class lists in the system for those students and classes to which the criteria apply.


More news

View all news