Syllabus Policy Examples

In an interactive online course, the learner's role becomes more active and complex. Therefore, your expectations for students should be clearly established. Here are samples of statements that could be put into the first session of your course:

  • "I expect students to be present online." - Students are expected to fully participate in each Discussion Topic. This includes posting an initial response to the board mid-week and then subsequent postings until the end of the session. Lurking (reading only) does not earn credit, nor does it contribute to our class learning and community.
  • "I expect students to manage their time effectively." - Because online courses move quickly and require self-discipline, it is important to efficiently manage your time. This would include not waiting until the last minute to turn in assignments or tests. Technology is not fail proof, so please allow time for unforeseen problems.

From 147 Practical Tips for Teaching Online Groups: Essentials of Web-Based Education.

Weekly student participation and response in online courses is considered a necessary factor in the learning process. In this form of computer-based learning, weekly course participation is the equivalent to class attendance. Online participation may include: e-mail to faculty/class members, response to a bulletin board posting, an assignment being turned in, and other communication reflecting ongoing learning in the course. If no student response occurs during a week of the term, the student is considered absent. According to DBU academic policy, Attendance in class is considered a necessary factor in the learning process. Therefore, absences for all reasons must be kept to a minimum and should not exceed 25% of the total class time. Students are held responsible for all academic work required or performed during their absence regardless of the reasons for those absences; The policy further states that violations of the attendance policy could result in the student receiving a grade of F In an online class environment, participation will equate with attendance.

Regular participation is critical to your success in this class. Students are expected to attend all sessions and to be prepared for assignments and discussions. Class participation influences your grade.