My iguana ate my homework

Professors share the most inventive excuses they’ve ever been given

We've all missed a class here and there. Sometimes you're sick, sometimes you have an assignment to finish and sometimes you fall into Lake Ontario.

I spoke to a few professors and asked them to share the oddest excuses they’d ever been given by a student. Here’s what they said:

“The weirdest excuse is one that I myself used when I was an undergraduate: the cat peed on my essay. It was 100 per cent true: I brought the essay in to show her — in a Ziploc bag, I hasten to add. She gave me an extension.”

— Professor Scott-Morgan Straker, English Department

“I once had a student who missed four weeks of class because of ‘Frosh Week.’”

— Professor Gordon Dueck, History Department

“This is an excuse from a student at a different school — I’ve only been at Queen's a month after all and the DRAM 100s have been pretty good so far. A student told me that he had written his assignment, but he’d written it in erasable pen and the friction from it being in his backpack had caused all the writing to disappear. He tried to give me a blank notebook.”

— Lecturer Kelsey Jacobson, Drama Department

“I had a student who came 30 minutes late to class because he said he fell into Lake Ontario and had to go change. I taught him again the next year and he told me that he couldn’t take the exam because he got arrested.”

— Professor Aditi Sen, History Department

“I led a tutorial, and students were supposed to have prepared written reports. I asked two students for their reports, and J. explained that he was ill the night before. Then I asked the other one for his, and he said, ‘I am sorry, but I was out drinking with J.’”

— Professor Tracy Ware, English Department

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