2012 – 2013 Course Syllabi

Each section of each course must have a syllabus containing information that describes the content of each section, the way this section will be conducted and how grades will be determined. Difficulties have arisen when there is no syllabus to describe class policies and procedures or when the syllabus contains inadequate information to explain how a grade is determined. The 2011-2013 Undergraduate Bulletin describes academic policies and procedures (pages 103-118) that pertain to these issues.

As you prepare your course syllabi, please include the following items in any format that is appropriate for your course.

Remember: Syllabi are required for every course section and an electronic copy must be sent to your secretary for our office. This includes graded, pass/fail, independent study, and practica classes.

  1. At the beginning or top of the syllabus, place the course number, the semester in which the course is being taught, the instructor’s name and office location. If the course satisfies a core requirement, please make note of that as well.
  2. Include a minimum of six office hours per week for full-time faculty. A written statement from part-time faculty indicating how they will make themselves available should also be included.
  3. List the text(s) and materials for the course in complete detail (so that the student is sure that he or she has the correct editions, etc.) Include supplementary references required for the course. The syllabus should indicate whether readings are on reserve in the library, are general library items, or are available electronically.
  4. Identify the goals, objectives, and learning outcomes expected for the section, as extensively or as briefly as the instructor wishes. Describe the methods of presentation, such as lectures, group discussions, lab sessions, etc. (Learning outcomes provide a basis for assessment.)
  5. Give the dates on which assignments (papers, problems, etc.) are due and describe the content of these assignments. The syllabus should also explain the course policy on assignments submitted late, including whether a penalty will be imposed because work is late.
  6. List the number of tests or quizzes to be given and when they are to be given. Include a statement as to the types of tests or quizzes will be given, and whether a makeup test is permitted if a student misses a scheduled test.
  7. The nature of the final exam should be spelled out: comprehensive, over the last portion of the course, etc. List the day and time assigned for the final (found with the schedule of classes on Banner web). A final exam of some type is required for each section unless approval from the dean is granted for an exemption.
  8. Describe the grading or weighting of the various components of the course in determining a final grade, including the weighting of tests, papers, final exams, etc. The method of evaluation is determined by each instructor, but students need to know the way various components are weighted, including class participation.  Include an explanation of your grading scale (A, A-, etc.).
  9. As explained in the Undergraduate Bulletin, a written statement of the attendance policy for each class is expected as part of the class syllabus. You need to be consistent in applying this policy. Please do not lessen your policy for students who claim to have a disability. Instead, direct them to Allison West, Director of the Office of Services for Students with Disabilities – see information below in #11.
  10. A statement regarding academic honesty, its definition and the penalty it carries, should also be included. Be as specific as you can and refer to the University policy published in the 2011-2013 Undergraduate Bulletin.
  11. A statement about students with disabilities must be included. The statement serves as notification of the procedures students should follow if they have a disability. Some students may choose to disclose a disability directly to the professor without following protocol; in such cases, please re-direct the student to the Office of Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) in order to ensure legal compliance with federal law. We request all faculty to include the following statement in syllabi (provided by Allison West, JCU’s Director for SSD) to ensure campus-wide consistency. In accordance with federal law, if you have a documented disability (Learning, Psychological, Sensory, Physical, or Medical) you may be eligible to request accommodations from the Office of Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD). Please contact the Director, Allison West, at 216.397.4967 or come to the office located in room 7A, in the Garden Level of the Administration Building. Please keep in mind that accommodations are not retroactive so it is best to register at the beginning of each semester.  Only accommodations approved by SSD will be recognized in the classroom. Please contact SSD if you have further questions.
  12. At John Carroll University we are committed to fostering a respectful and inclusive campus community.  Incidents of bias which are intentional or unintentional actions against someone on the basis of an actual or perceived aspect of their identity, including actions that occur in classrooms, can and should be reported on the Bias Incident Reporting Form, accessible at http://sites.jcu.edu/bias/.  Questions about bias can be directed to members of the Bias Response Team: Lauren Bowen, Associate Academic Vice President (bowen@jcu.edu), Bud Stuppy, Director of Human Resources (cstuppy@jcu.edu), or Danielle Carter, Director of the Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion (dcarter@jcu.edu).
  13. The final item should be a topic outline so that the students know approximately the course topics and assignments at each given point in the semester. Faculty may prefer to list topics for each class meeting or for each week.
  14. Some faculty place syllabi on a web page or the course Blackboard page. If you do so, be sure to submit a copy to your department secretary, so it can be burned to a CD and given to this office for our permanent records.