While having a Welcome Note in the course is important, that’s just a way to get students started. That Welcome Note should direct students to the syllabus, their contract with you for the course. Here are some items you should address in your syllabus to establish clarity at the beginning of a course. Can you think of any other items?
- Course level objectives
- Instructor contact information
- Textbook, and any other required materials or technologies
- Outline your specific netiquette expectations for communicating in email, discussions, etc.,
- Post any course/institutional policies with which the student is expected to comply (e.g., late work, Academic Honesty, plagiarism).
- Explain evaluation criteria (rubrics).
- Explain any required materials and how these materials will be used.
- Explain any required prerequisite knowledge in the discipline.
- Explain any required technical skills and let students know where they can receive technical help.
- Inform them of the response time they can expect from you during the week and on the weekends. Let them know you will notify them if anything changes.
- Inform them of your feedback turnaround time (and then stick to it!).
- Let them know how often they should plan to log in, and how often you will be logging in.
- Grading scales
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