Dr. Steven Haber: E-mail at: email@example.com
Telephone: 200-3087; Office: H-111
The purpose of this course is to provide opportunities for students to improve the reading and writing skills needed for university coursework. The following are some of my goals for the course:
1. Creating a relaxed and pleasant atmosphere for cooperative learning.
2. Developing greater independence and self confidence as readers and writers.
3. Learning how to get started on writing projects.
4. Responding to work by others in the class and discovering ways in which writing can be improved.
5. Talking and writing about stories, newspaper & magazine articles.
6. Using new technology for communication and language learning.
7. Improving grammatical accuracy.
8. Preparing for the ESL Program's final placement examination.
Although this is a six credit course, we will meet only three hours per week in the classroom. The remaining three credits of coursework will be earned on-line by completing the readings, activities and assignments available through the course website. The on-line portion of the course can be completed either on your home computer, in one of the computer labs on campus, or from any place you have access to the Internet. All assignments must be completed according to the deadlines posted in the syllabus. If you are unable to keep up with the coursework either on-line or in the classroom, you will be advised to withdraw.
This course requires a lot of time, effort, and a willingness to accept responsibility. In this class, the on-line portion of the course is just as important as the work we do in the classroom. But unlike a regular class, there won't be anyone to tell you when to do the on-line work nor will there be a teacher standing in front of you to make sure the work gets done. It is up to you to make sure the work is completed, and on time. However, if you follow the syllabus and do all the work, you will find that in addition to learning English, you will also be gaining valuable computer skills which will help you both in your future coursework and in your career.
1. To give you as many opportunities as possible to express your thoughts, opinions and feelings, both in the classroom and on-line.
2. To provide ways of sharing your writing with the class, either in person or on line.
3. To give you feedback on your writing in the areas of content and grammar, both in-person and on-line.
4. To provide you with reading material and activities on a variety of themes and topics of interest.
5. To provide you with resources to improve your English and writing skills, and to enhance your general knowledge of issues in the news.
6. To help you prepare for the final placement exam.
If you do not want a piece of writing to be published, let me know. Otherwise, anything you write may be published on-line or in printed publications. I will read everything you hand in and respond to your work either by e-mail, in writing or in conferences. If you want to see me for a conference, make an appointment by contacting me. I urge everyone to see me at least twice during the semester, especially if you are having difficulties.
1. Because the classroom portion of the course depends on group participation, it is necessary for everyone to come to class regularly and to be on time. If you miss more than three classes, you may be dropped from the course. Two latenesses will be counted as an absence. It is your responsibility to get in touch with me if you are absent to find out what work you missed.
2. You will be asked to write at least twelve papers. Higher grades will be awarded for substantial revision.
3. You will be asked to complete all of the on-line activities as outlined in the syllabus according to the deadlines. Failure to complete the activities on time may result in dismissal from the course.
4. You will be asked to do a mini group research project in which you, along with two to three other students will research a current events topic using on-line resources and the university library. At the end of the course, you will present your project to the class in the form of a PowerPoint presentation.
There will be practice exams and a final placement exam. Each exam will contain an essay question in which you will be asked to write about a current issue. The final placement test will be graded by two instructors from the ESL program. You must pass the final exam in order to receive a passing grade for the course. It is your responsibility to consult with me as to your prospects of passing the exam.
Course grades will be based on the following criteria:
25% Class attendance & participation
25% On-Line Activities
20% Group Research Project/Presentation
These grades will be based on the total accumulation of the work submitted, finished papers and revisions. Grades will be lower if work is missing. Higher grades will be assigned for thoughtful revision of compositions and for grammatical accuracy.
Papers will be graded on a scale of 1 to 6 as follows:
1= Extremely weak. Poor control of grammar. Insufficient vocabulary. Unclear ideas. Poor organization.
2= Weak. Frequent grammar errors. Ideas may be clear, but poorly organized. Insufficient detail.
3= Fair. Occasional grammar errors. Ideas clear, but insufficiently developed with examples and details.
4= Good. Shows control or grammar, vocabulary, ideas developed with examples. Adequate organization.
5= Very Good. Strong control of grammar, idioms and usage. Highly developed details. Makes use of reading and class discussion.
6= Excellent. Almost no grammatical errors. Sophisticated use of language. Shows evidence of creativity and critical thinking. Makes connections across academic disciplines.
This is an experimental course. Your suggestions and comments are important in making the course successful. Good luck!