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UW English
Computer Integrated Classes
Maintained by
CIC AD Staff

Last updated
11/20/2009

CIC Faculty Guide Online

Adapting Your Syllabus for CIC

Not all students who show up on the first day are aware that they have selected a CIC course. Others do not have a clear idea of what a computer-integrated course involves. Addressing these questions and concerns on the first day of class can be a tremendous advantage. Specifying the expectations and requirements that go hand-in-hand with a CIC course on your syllabus is also a good idea. In order to adapt your syllabus to reflect the computer-integrated environment, you will need to make a few additions. The most basic information that you will want to include is listed below.

Course Description and Objectives

Most instructors include on their syllabus a brief paragraph or two that defines "CIC" and sketches out the day-to-day activities in each of the Mary Gates classrooms. It is particularly important for students to understand the distinction between the computer classrooms and the more traditional classrooms and for them to be aware that the class will be alternating locations. Your syllabus should emphasize that CIC courses are first and foremost writing courses—your class will utilize the technology available in the lab to work on active reading, writing, peer review, revision, and critical thinking. The following is an excerpt from a CIC syllabus:

As part of the English Department’s Computer Integrated Classroom (CIC) program, we will have access to technologies not available in the traditional classroom. Half of our class periods will be held in Mary Gates 082, a networked computer lab. You will be using the computers to conduct research, participate in online discussions, complete group exercises, draft and share work, comment on your peers' essays, and keep a record (in your individual folder) of your written work. With these opportunities come a few additional requirements. You will need to provide some of your work in electronic form, and this may require you to convert your files into Word format. You will also need to put in effort early in the quarter to become comfortable with the computer skills needed for success in this class.

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Attendance and Class Participation

The CIC classroom gives instructors a range of materials generated both in and out of class that can be included as part of a participation grade. Although you may choose to make use of online tools, indicate to students that your course requires collaborative, in-class participation. CIC courses are not distance-learning classes.

Electronic Discussion

Some instructors require their students to contribute a minimum number of electronic discussion postings over the course of the quarter. Others require students to post weekly responses to course texts. Still other instructors use the discussion board in real time during class. If your class includes electronic discussion, indicate how online postings will be counted in students' final grade. Will they include a sample of postings in their portfolio? Will you use credit/no credit grading and count electronic discussion as participation?

Peer Reviews and Group Work

CIC instructors frequently use the lab for in-class electronic peer review or small-group activities in which students discuss a course text while taking notes via Word. Include information about peer review and group work on your syllabus, explaining how they weighted in the final class grade.

Reading Journal and Freewrites

At the beginning of each lab class, you may ask students to freewrite or compose a reading journal entry. For some instructors, such activities are heavily weighted as a participation requirement.

 

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Assignments

Assignment Formats

You will probably want to detail for students the formats their assignments will take. Instructors often ask to receive written work in a variety of forms. In addition to the usual paper copy (which some instructors find preferable for grading purposes), written work can also be submitted in electronic format to the course network space, a GoPost discussion board and/or a CollectIt dropbox. The use of electronic format raises other questions: will students be allowed to integrate images, hypertext, video, or audio into written essays or create work in these modes?

In specifying where and when you want students to turn in electronic files (for example, to the class network at the beginning of the period, to GoPost the night before class meets, etc.), make sure to indicate which submission methods are not acceptable (email, for example). Also let students know what to do if online tools break down.

File Conversion

Since students my use programs or operating systems different from those in the lab, they may need to save files created at home in a format usable in the lab and vice versa. You may want to suggest that students look over the file conversion section of the CIC Student Guide if they have a Mac or if they use a word processing program other than Microsoft Word.

 

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Texts, Materials and Resources

The CIC Student Guide

The CIC Student Guide explains CIC policies and gives detailed information on using the computers and programs available in our lab classrooms. Although you may not use all sections of the guide, it's useful to list the URL on your syllabus.

File Saving and Transfer

Students will need several reliable methods to back-up their work and to transfer any materials from their home computers to the Mary Gates classrooms. Students may use email attachments, FTP or memory sticks for this purpose.

Lab Public Hours

You may want to include in your syllabus information about public lab hours. On Saturdays, and after classes each weekday, Mary Gates 076 is open to students enrolled in CIC classes. The lab schedule is available on the CIC lab page. We also post these hours in all CIC classrooms.

UW Net ID and Email Address

It is best to note on the syllabus that students must have both a UW Net ID and UW email account, even if they forward messages. All Catalyst tools use UW Net ID to identify users, and MyUW's automatic class email list generator uses UW email addresses. To create a class email list, log onto MyUW, select Teaching from the left-hand column and click Request class email list in the My Course Resources area. Consider including the class list address on your syllabus.

 

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Policies

EWP Policies

CIC syllabi should include general EWP policy statements regarding plagiarism, accommodations and complaints. You may also list the CIC administrative staff as contacts for any questions or concerns regarding classroom technology.

Lab Classroom Conduct

Although the CIC Student Guide lists general policies regarding use of lab computers, you may want to include on your syllabus additional expectations for using computers during class.

Lateness

Because your class incorporates technology, emphasize to students that technology glitches do not constitute a valid excuse for late work. Explain the importance of maintaining backup copies of all files. Also let students know acceptable alternative methods of submitting work should Catalyst tools malfunction. If you ask students to bring work to class in electronic format, consider requiring them to transfer this work via two methods (memory stick and upload to Dante, for example).

 

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Sample CIC Syllabi

To view sample syllabi, follow the links below. Note that sample materials may be password-protected with the username and password distributed in 131 TA training.

 

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Additional Resources

 

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