Class/seminar attendance taking

Why do we take attendance?

It is a requirement of our sponsor licence to ensure that international students to whom a study visa has been issued are actually engaging with their studies.  If the LSE cannot demonstrate this, then our sponsor licence becomes at risk, with the ultimate sanction that we are no longer permitted to recruit international students. 

Class/seminar registers must be recorded in LFY

The Visa Compliance team at the LSE runs reports against those registers.  So whatever we do to facilitate attendance-taking in the room, student attendance will still need to be recorded in LFY. I.e. the teacher will enter the attendance by hand either at the beginning of the class or afterwards

“Covid-secure” attendance taking

In normal times students were asked to sign an attendance sheet which would be passed around the room, but this will not be an option this year. Instead, here are some suggestions for collecting attending participants' names. Here are a few solutions.

In-person class/seminar attendance

For small groups all the easiest would be for you to open the LFY register on the teaching computer, call out names, take attendance and you’re done; alternatively call out names and tick them off on a printed version, enter those into the LFY register later. 

  • Advantage: you’re done.

For large classes where this would take too much time, we suggest you ask students to complete an ‘electronic’ sign up sheet, ie to record their attendance somehow online eg:

Moodle “choice” activity

  • Simply ask students to tick an “i am here' option. You can set it up to open and close for a particular time. You will have to reopen it for the next time (and delete all former answers) or set up one each week.
    Students click on the choice:

    what the students see

    Then tick and save it:

    This is what the teachers see:


    • Advantage: very easy, in a familiar environment

    • Disadvantage: students can tick and then “leave”, but that’s no different from students in the room being physically present but not listening.

  • Guide on using the Moodle choice activity

ResponseWare (instant online voting)

  • if you use ResponseWare, you can take registry in various easy ways, the most simple being to ask students to login with their full name. Students can do this in the room as well as from elsewhere using their mobile phone.

    • Advantage: easy and efficient if you’re a responseware user already

    • Disadvantage: students may feel less comfortable to answer questions.

Attendance plugin in Moodle

  • add and schedule your classes via this new plugin in Moodle. (This plugin will only be available after the 19th/20th September weekend refresh date)

    • Advantage: it’s made for exactly this purpose and you can set it up for recurring dates and times

    • Disadvantage: it’s slightly more complex to set up than a choice

A shared document (via OneDrive), in whichever format you like (excel spreadsheet, word document

  • Simply share a link to the document, put it on your slides, or send it in an email, or add it to your Moodle course.

    • Advantage: it’s a link.

    • Disadvantage: it’s a clunky approach and you can’t easily see when students add their names.

Online attendance

For those of you who will deliver Hybrid teaching (synchronous some in room, some attending online), and/or “Zoom in the room” (synchronous teaching some in room, some online but ALL on zoom) and/or synchronous online only teaching you can do exactly the same as above, or a combination, or simply rely on zoom’s (or teams') registry feature.

We have a guide on how to use zoom to register attendance.

Asynchronous attendance registration for students who have pre-arranged permission not to attend class

ARD have said that students can be marked ‘P’ when they are in fact taking recorded seminars, providing that permission has been given by departments to do so on the basis of strong and acceptable reasons, and providing that channels of communication are kept open with these students at all times or at least at regular intervals to check in with them and obtain further confirmation that they are indeed watching the recorded seminars. If departments are not satisfied with the regular level of engagement and quality of formative work submitted by students who have been given permission to attend recorded seminars, then they should communicate that to the students with a warning that they will be marked as ‘A’ if engagement doesn’t improve or if they fail to respond altogether.

Remember that however you collect your students' participation, you will still have to add them manually into LFY.




This guide is provided by Eden.Digital, LSE Eden Centre and licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License CC BY-SA 4.0