It's a phenomenon that I have yet to comprehend. . .the sometimes gradual, sometimes quick, disappearance of students from online classes. You know the ones: they never say anything, they never ask for help, and they never let you know why they are leaving. They just disappear.
If we could actually identify the day that they left, we might be able to draw some conclusions. Was it right before (or after) a difficult assignment? Right after financial aid funds are disbursed?
I don't have the answers, and the faculty who teach for me are concerned that they have so few students, particularly in the 10-week session, who are participating. I tell them that "all they can do is all they can do," and our best efforts likely will not markedly alter this outcome. Why do they leave? What happens to them later on? Do they face repercussions for having just disappeared? One would think so, if they are receiving financial aid.
But where do they go?