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College Writing Course Policies

Attendance Policy. Class activities are a major part of this course. You are expected to attend and be prepared for every class, including scheduled one-on-one conferences with the instructor. The university recognizes that some absences may be unavoidable and thus excused, e.g., due to religious observances, required participation in athletic events, disability-related accommodations. See www.umass.edu/registrar/students/policies-and-practices/class-absence-policy. However, if you cannot attend at least 80% (10 weeks) of class meetings—even if your absences are university-sanctioned—you should take College Writing in a different term, not this semester.

Students who miss more than 20% or 3 weeks of class meetings (6 absences for TTh/MW classes, 9 absences for MWF classes)—in most cases—cannot pass the course. If you have extenuating circumstances that might affect your class attendance and/or if you might have university-sanctioned and unexcused absences, talk to me as soon as possible—ideally, during the first week of classes.

You are responsible for the following if you miss a class: (1) notify me in advance, (2) find out from me how to make up the equivalent of missed work, and (3) complete the make-up work by the original deadline.  If you cannot give advance notice, talk to me as early as possible.

For non-university sanctioned absences that add up to fewer than 3 weeks, absences can impact your writing community membership grade in the ways listed below. Note: university-sanctioned, excused absences will not affect your writing community membership grade.

Note that absences also impact the quality and completeness of your unit portfolios--and thus, may affect the grade that you'll earn for these portfolios.

Academic Honesty Policy.  When using ideas, words, and short passages from other people's writing in your own writing, you are required to acknowledge the source. Failure to acknowledge the contribution of others is considered plagiarism, a serious academic offense; fabrication of sources is another form of academic dishonesty. We'll discuss the Writing Program's Academic Honesty Policy later in the semester, but note that suspect papers (e.g., those without drafts or works cited pages, papers which make large departures in style from your other work) may be submitted to Turnitin.com as part of the grading process. For more details, see http://www.umass.edu/writingprogram/112/policies.html. Also, see the university's policy: www.umass.edu/dean_students/codeofconduct/acadhonesty/.

Course Grade. Your final course grade for the semester will be based on the following breakdown:

Unit Portfolios, 1-4 (units may or may not be weighted equally—see assignment sheets)

80%

Unit 5: Writer's Statement essay

10%

Writing Community Membership

10%

Total

100%

Final grades will be based on the following numerical equivalents and general definitions:


letter

grade pt

percent

meaning

 

A

4.0

100-94

excellent

 

A-

3.7

93-90

 

 

B+

3.3

89-87

 

*Note: Grades of B and above are considered honors

B

3.0

86-83

good

grades. The grade of A indicates excellence.

B-

2.7

82-80

 

 

C+

2.3

79-77

 

 

C

2.0

76-73

fair

 

C-

1.7

72-70

 

 

D+

1.3

69-67

 

 

D

1.0

66-60

poor

 

F

0.0

59-0

failure

 


For more information on College Writing, see the standard syllabus.

 
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