Standard Syllabus Format

English 125 is a general education course offered in multiple sections taught by many instructors. Instructors need to include the following items on their syllabi to ensure consistency. At the end of these guidelines instructors will find a useful sample syllabus.
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Course Description

ENG125 Composition I: Introduction to College Writing. 3 hr + 1 hr conference, 3 cr. This course introduces students to academic reading and writing practices and strategies through close reading, textual analysis, writing, and revision. Focusing primarily on expository, analytical, and academic texts, students develop their critical thinking skills and are introduced to the fundamentals of college-level research. Students will spend one hour per week in conferences, collaborative learning activities, or peer review.  Preq: By placement exam.

Course Section

Designate a specific section such as MN3, PQ2.

Time and Place of Course Meetings

Provide room numbers, days, and times courses meet.

Contact Information

Provide office location, phone number, email address, and office hours.

Required Texts

List book titles, and indicate where students can purchase, borrow, copy, and/or download. To emphasize the importance of modeling proper citation, please adhere to MLA format when listing required texts on your syllabus.

(See the Required Texts page for the up-to-date list of texts with ISBN numbers.)

Basis of Final Grade

Remember that according to the Assignment Recommendations, this course requires at least three (3) formal essays that are the result of drafting and revision. These essays should be thesis-driven. 

These formal papers must be worth at least sixty percent (60%) of the final grade.

The final examination should be 10% of the final grade.

Provide the breakdown of specific assignments by percentages.  That is: Paper #1:  15%.

Requirements and Regulations

Include attendance, lateness, and conduct policies.

The Department of English has adopted a common attendance policy for multiple section courses (English 125, English 126, and Writing 300).  Your syllabus should include the following statement:

Success in this class depends on regular and punctual attendance. The English Department's policy for multiple section courses such as this one is:

(Then include the applicable policy based on the number of days per week your class meets.)

For classes that meet twice a week use this wording:

  • Students in classes that meet twice a week may miss no more than five (5) sessions.
  • Six (6) absences are grounds for failure.
  • Missing 15 minutes of class—arriving late, departing early, or leaving during class-- counts as half an absence.

For classes that meet once a week use this wording:

  • Students in classes that meet once a week may miss no more than two (2) sessions.
  • Three (3) absences are grounds for failure.
  • Missing 15 minutes of class—arriving late, departing early, or leaving during class-- counts as half an absence.

Plagiarism Statement

Provide definition of and policy regarding plagiarism: i.e. Deliberately submitting someone else's work as your own is a serious offense that will result in an F for the course. For more information about plagiarism, see The York College Bulletin, “Definitions and Examples of Academic Dishonesty” and Purdue University’s Online Writing Lab resource,“Avoiding Plagiarism.”

Learning Objectives (please list ALL of the objectives as they appear below)

  • Read and listen critically and analytically, including identifying an argument’s major assumptions and assertions and evaluating its supporting evidence.

  • Write clearly and coherently in varied, academic formats (such as formal essays, research papers, and reports) using standard English and appropriate technology to critique and improve one’s own and others’ texts.

  • Demonstrate research skills using appropriate technology, including gathering, evaluating, and synthesizing primary and secondary sources.

  • Support a thesis with well-reasoned arguments, and communicate persuasively across a variety of contexts, purposes, audiences, and media.

  • Formulate original ideas and relate them to the ideas of others by employing the conventions of ethical attribution and citation.

Course Outline of Assignments and Activities

Provide a detailed week-by-week outline of assignments and activities.

__________________________________________________________________________

Printable Version

Sample Syllabus

English 125

Composition I: Introduction to College Writing

Department of English                                                                                                                     Instructor

York College/CUNY                                                                                                                     Office:

Semester                                                                                                                                         E-mail:

Section #: Meeting Times                                                                                                               Office Hours:

Room #                                                                                                                                          Phone:

Course Description:

ENG125 Composition I: Introduction to College Writing. 3 hr + 1 hr conference, 3 cr. This course introduces students to academic reading and writing practices and strategies through close reading, textual analysis, writing, and revision. Focusing primarily on expository, analytical, and academic texts, students develop their critical thinking skills and are introduced to the fundamentals of college-level research. Students will spend one hour per week in conferences, collaborative learning activities, or peer review. This course may be offered as an online course. Preq: By placement exam.

Learning Objectives

  • Read and listen critically and analytically, including identifying an argument’s major assumptions and assertions and evaluating its supporting evidence.

  • Write clearly and coherently in varied, academic formats (such as formal essays, research papers, and reports) using standard English and appropriate technology to critique and improve one’s own and others’ texts.

  • Demonstrate research skills using appropriate technology, including gathering, evaluating, and synthesizing primary and secondary sources.

  • Support a thesis with well-reasoned arguments, and communicate persuasively across a variety of contexts, purposes, audiences, and media.

  • Formulate original ideas and relate them to the ideas of others by employing the conventions of ethical attribution and citation.

Required Texts

Comley, Nancy R., David Hamilton, Carl H. Klaus, Robert Scholes and Nancy Summers. Fields of Reading. 10th edition. Boston: Bedford St. Martins, 2012.

Hacker, Diana. The Bedford Handbook, 8th ed. Boston: Bedford, 2009.

Grading:

Final grades ranging from A to F will be based upon completion of all course requirements (writing and reading assignments, class participation and attendance) and the Final Examination. The three formal papers will make up the bulk of your grade, as outlined below:

Assignment Percentage of final grade

1. Paper #1 (3-4 pages) 15%

2. Paper #2 (3-4 pages) 20%

3. Paper #3 (4-6 pages) 30%

4. Department Final Exam 10%

5. Homework, Quizzes and In-class writing 20%

6. Peer-review critiques 5%

Attendance Policy: Your success in this class depends on regular and punctual attendance. The English Department's policy for multiple section courses such as this one is:

  • Students in classes that meet twice a week may miss no more than five (5) sessions.

  • Six (6) absences are grounds for failure.

  • Missing 15 minutes of class—arriving late, departing early, or leaving during class–counts as half an absence.

Classroom Courtesy

Please arrive on time and stay in the room throughout the entire class period. Perhaps once a semester you may need to answer an emergency call of nature, but walking in and out during classtime is distracting and rude to the rest of the class. Certainly there is no reason to do this regularly. Turn off all cellphones when the class starts.

Communication

The best way to reach me is via email. I will try to respond in 24 hours; occasionally it may take a little longer. One of the first things I’d like you to do after class is to send me an email from your York College email address. This will get your email address in my address book, and it will help you to work out any glitches with your York College email address. Blackboard sends emails to York College email addresses, so you will miss out on a lot if you don’t check this email address.

If you’re having problems with an assignment, if something that I have asked you to do is unclear, if you’re having personal issues – anything! – let me know as soon as you can, either in person, or via email. I will try my best to help you, but I can’t know if you are having trouble if you don’t tell me. In a face-to-face class, the dynamic that I see in the classroom helps me to figure out who needs help, but we don’t have that kind of indirect communication in this online class. The only way I know what’s going on is if you tell me, or if you disappear. The first option is a much better one!

Information about Assignments

All assignments are due at the beginning of class. They should be appropriately printed and stapled. Anyone who is missing from the beginning of class, or leaves class to go and print an assignment, will be marked late. Do your printing before class starts.

No Late Assignments

I will not accept late assignments, except due to extenuating circumstances. You must tell me about any problems that you are having before the assignment is due. I do give extensions under some circumstances; I do not give extensions when they are requested after the assignment is due. If you know that you will miss a class, please email me your work, before the beginning of class. Work that is submitted via email after class starts will considered not to have been submitted.

Format

All formal assignments must be submitted in a typed-document. I will accept documents in a .doc, .docx .rtf, .txt, or .odt format. Many PCs come with Microsoft Works installed. I cannot read .wps files.Use Microsoft Word, Open Office, NeoOffice, or Wordpad or Notepad if you don’t want to be bothered changing the file type (all word processors can save files as .rtf and .txt). Written assignments that are submitted via documents in the .wps format will be marked late, because it will take a little while for me to email you, and for you to resubmit the file in the right format. If you need help, let me know (send me an email or call) at least one day before the assignment is due, and I will help you.

Academic Integrity Statement

A violation of academic integrity is any instance when a student attempts to pass off someone else’s words or ideas as their own, no matter where s/he obtained those words or ideas, and no matter where these ideas are presented. We practice using quotation and citation in this course so you can benefit from others’ ideas, while attributing them appropriately. There is nothing wrong with representing someone else’s ideas in your work; you just have to give them credit. Additionally, there is nothing wrong with getting help on an assignment, but the final product must be predominantly the result of your own work. All academic integrity violations in English 125 will result in an F on the assignment, and/or, a failing grade in the course, and/or referral to the College's Academic Integrity officer.

York College gives four definitions of types of academic integrity violation (these definitions can be found in the York College policy on academic integrity, which I have linked to below):

  • Cheating: Cheating is the unauthorized use or attempted use of material, information, notes, study aids, devices or communication during an academic exercise.

  • Plagiarism: Plagiarism is the act of presenting another person’s ideas, research or writings as your own.

  • Obtaining Unfair Advantage: Obtaining Unfair Advantage is any activity that intentionally or unintentionally gives a student an unfair advantage in his/her academic work over another student.

  • Falsification of Records and Official Documents

York College’s policies and procedures concerning academic integrity can be found here:

http://www.york.cuny.edu/president/legal-compliance/legal-affairs/cuny-legal-policies-procedures/Academic-Integrity-Policy.pdf/. For more information about plagiarism, see the Purdue University’s Online Writing Lab resource, “Avoiding Plagiarism,” http://owl.english.purdue.edu/handouts/research/r_plagiar.html

York College Resources

Computers with word processing software and internet access are available in the library and in computer labs.

York College Library: http://york.cuny.edu/library

York College Computer Labs: http://york.cuny.edu/it/acet/computer-labs

York College Writing Center: http://york.cuny.edu/student/writing-center

Located in the Academic Core 1C18, The Writing Center assists students with writing skills. The Center offers scheduled tutoring, drop-in tutoring and workshops. For more information, stop by, call (718) 262-2494, or check the Writing Center Website.

English as Second Language (ESL) Tutoring Center

Tutoring is available for ESL students in Academic Core 3C08. Call (718) 262-2831 for schedule.

Students with Disabilities

Students with disabilities may contact the STAR Program to learn about and gain access to resources available to them at the college. See their website at http://www.york.cuny.edu/student-development/star for more details.

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