Spring Quarter, 2010

Course Policies


You may take two unexcused absences during the course. Beyond those, each absence will reduce your course grade substantially, and more than four absences will result in a failing grade. Professional conventions also ask you to alert us ahead of time if you will be missing class on a day when you are scheduled to present materials to the class, or to participate in workshop activities.

Should you miss a class or a workshop for any reason, it is your responsibility to find out from classmates & colleagues what you missed and to get copies of handouts or other materials.

Plagiarism and Academic Integrity

Plagiarism is a serious offense, one whose sanctions range from a reduction in grades to expulsion from the university.  According to DePaul’s academic integrity policy,

Plagiarism is a major form of academic dishonesty involving the presentation of the work of another as one’s own. Plagiarism includes but is not limited to the following:

– The direct copying of any source, such as written and verbal material, computer files, audio disks, video programs or musical scores, whether published or unpublished, in whole or part, without proper acknowledgment that it is someone else’s.

– Copying of any source in whole or part without proper acknowledgement.

– Submitting as one’s own work a report, examination paper, computer file, lab report or other assignment that has been prepared by someone else. This includes research papers purchased from any other person or agency.

– The paraphrasing of another’s work or ideas without proper acknowledgment.

You should familiarize yourself with these and other academic integrity resources at DePaul, including those that discuss your rights and responsibilities.

I strongly recommend that when in doubt, always provide citations and direct attribution when using anyone else’s work, from print or online sources, and when summarizing, paraphrasing, or quoting from someone else’s work.

Why am I making such a big deal out of this? As you know, with the increasing use of communication technologies such as the internet, there is a simultaneous increase of copy-and-paste uses of other people’s work. In academic contexts, using someone else’s work without attribution can result in consequences ranging from a lowered grade (in my course, you fail the entire course) to expulsion from the university; in professional contexts, you surrender your credibility and probably your job. I’d encourage you, then, when tempted to use someone else’s work to stop and ask for help, or for a deadline extension, which I usually give automatically under most reasonable circumstances.

I am always available to discuss any plagiarism or other intellectual property concerns or questions you might have for this or for any other class.

Assignment Requirements

Keep copies of all work submitted for grading. In the case of loss or damage, you are responsible for having another copy. Backup all your work for this or any other course when you are using a computer. Computer failure is a tragedy but not an excuse for late assignments.

Required Work

We will do a lot of reading, writing, revising, editing, and proofreading in this course, and we will review and discuss your work at various stages in its production. You should plan ahead in order to stay abreast of the course calendar and to allow time for the most important parts of the writing & designing processes: rereading, revising, and rethinking.1.

The revision process that occurs between your first and final iterations usually requires attention to several elements, such as mechanics, tone, and arrangement, and grading criteria will include an evaluation of your initiative and follow-through in the revising process.

Each major assignment must be completed to receive a passing grade in the course. Deadlines are negotiable only in cases of a documented medical emergency; without prior arrangements, late work will be marked down one letter grade for every day it is late.

Peer Responses & Writing Groups

The most important resource we have in this course is each other. We will spend time discussing collaborative work and how to create and sustain productive writing, designing, and editing groups. Part of your own grade will be based on your contribution to your writing group, as well as your collegial and professional responsiveness to their feedback.

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