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English 1010: Composition I Online

Instructor: Kathleen Beauchene, Professor of English
Office: Flanagan (Lincoln) Campus – Room #1368
Office Hours: Fall and Spring 
See Blackboard for specific hours. (Also, available by appointment.)
Phone: For Spring 2022, please email me.
E-mail: [email protected] (Preferred contact method)
Other Contact Methods: 401-333-7372 (Flanagan Campus, Lincoln, English Dept.)
401-825-2262 (Knight Campus, Warwick, English Dept.)
GENERAL COURSE INFORMATION:

Composition I is recommended for all first-year students and required for many, depending on curriculum.The purpose of this course is to enable students to write fluent, accurate and effective essays, including research and documentation assignments. (Prerequisite: English placement exam or at least a C in ENGL 1005.) Lecture: 3 hours

At the end of the course, students are expected to possess specific knowledge about the writing process and exhibit specific writing skills.

OUR COURSE OVERVIEW:

Welcome to Composition I that meets fully online using Blackboard 9.1 as our learning management system. No on-campus visits are required of you…just your weekly visits to our Blackboard site.

If you need imediate personalized assistance, email me at [email protected] Please note that you are not “bothering me, harassing me, annoying me” by asking me questions. Feel free to ask me questions, even if they seem silly to you. I will respond politely and promptly, usually within 24 hours.

To ensure that you have a positive course experience, I recommend reading the policies carefully to get an understanding about how the course is designed and how you can best meet course objectives.

Many students ask to see a syllabus. However, that is available ONLY at our Blackboard (Bb) site as it contains various course links. Email me to be sent an example of a weekly schedule based on a previous semester. The remainder of this document should provide you with the necessary course information, including important policies, outcomes, and types of assignments.

Additionally, to determine if taking a distance learning course matches your learning style, please review the remainder of this document and visit the Distance Learning Site for students.)

To ensure that your computer is ready for this course, please check out Course Requirements (#2) below.

Blackboard REGISTRATION:

Being registered for this course automatically registers you into the Bb course component, where you will find the course syllabi, assignments, and resources. However, you will only be able to gain access once I make the course available. At that time, I will send you an email indicating that the course awaits you. Please follow the written log-in directions.

If you have any difficulty, you can contact me, the Help Desk (825-1112), or review any Blackboard documentation listed in Helpful Links.

Once you gain access to Blackboard, you will be required to take a non-graded Blackboard orientation test to ensure that you understand the policies and procedures of the course. You will not be able to continue in the course until you have completed the test.

All of the information that appears within this document will be more clear when you access the Blackboard site, where you will also find more specific directions, resources, and assignment information.

TEXTBOOK:

The Bedford Guide for College Writers, 12th edition, with Reader, Research Manual, and Handbook by X. J. Kennedy and others. Inclusive Access through the CCRI bookstore has been enabled for this e-book, which comes with Achieve, the publisher's online platform.

IMPORTANT: Do not attempt to purchase your text any other way, including the CCRI bookstore, Amazon, from a friend, etc. You MUST follow the VERY simple directions I have in our Blackboard course. Note that the cost will be added to your tuition AFTER the second week of the semester.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS:

1. Read assigned sections of the course text. These assignments are listed on our Bb site.

2. Complete essays, homework, and tests based on the timeline provided on our Bb website. At that site, I provide you with specific details about the assignments themselves and how to submit them. If at any time, you are unsure about your computer skills, please contact me and I will either direct you to a specific resource at the site or find the information you need. You do not need to be a computer geek to take this course! Remember the computer is just a tool, like pen and paper, so don’t let it inhibit your performance in this course. However, you will need to be sure that your computer is ready for this course, so check out the following information:

  • Check to see if your computer is Blackboard ready. This link will analyze your computer and let you know if it has the appropriate software and settings for Blackboard 9.1.

  • Check Computer Browser Requirements/ Plug In Requirements.

  • You will need MS Office, specifically MS Word, to submit written work. As a CCRI student, you have Office 365 as part of your email, and that provides access to Office products, such as MS Word, PowerPoint, and Excel. You can read more about it here: O365 download information.

  • Consider downloading Dropbox, an easy way to transfer files.

  • I will let you know if you need any particular software to view videos in this course. Have a “Plan B” in case you encounter a technology glitch. Technology problems are NOT an excuse for late assignments or incomplete work. Do not wait until the last minute to acess/start an assignment AND have a back-up plan should you encounter computer issues (like lack of an internet connection). Will you be able to go to a friend’s house, a computer lab on campus, a public library, and so on?

3. Check the Bb site on a weekly basis for updates that will be made to the Announcement area. Note that any item I put in an Announcement appears in Bb and is sent to your CCRI email address. You can also ask me or the class questions about course assignments, Bb functions or problems, or general course information in the Main Discussion forum. (During the summer session, you should check the site almost daily.)

4. Contribute to the Graded Discussion Forum, which is our virtual classroom, about writing-related topics that I will post. (Bb automatically keeps track of student visits.) Submitting homework, essays, and tests–is not enough. You need to be part of this course. You need to make your voice heard on the Graded Discussion Board and share it with your peers. Doing so factors into your participation grade.

5. Demonstrate appropriate online etiquette. From your own online experiences, you may have already discovered that people don’t always communicate the same way they do in a face-to-face environment. For example, they may email or post items that are inappropriate (i.e., rude) in content or tone. My basic advice is to think before you write when you email or post to our discussion board.

6. CCRI email is the official manner in which I will communicate with you. Therefore, be sure to check your CCRI email frequently. I will reply to any email you send me, regardless of what email address you have used, but I will not generate email to that address. If you are concerned about your email getting lost in cyberspace, you can request a “read receipt” from your email program so that you will know that I have at least received it.

GRADING POLICY:

1. Your final grade in the course will be based on the results of the following:

  • Timely submission of homework assignments. Each will receive a letter grade of A to F.

  • Timely submission and quality of essay assignments. While I encourage you to write multiple drafts, you will submit ONLY the final draft for grading. Each essay will receive a letter grade of A to F. A rubric will be provided for each essay assignment.

  • Take scheduled online tests based on sentence skills (grammar and punctuation) presented in your text. These tests are in our Bb course. Additionally, you will be taking what I refer to as practice tests in Learning Curve (part of Achieve). These will be averaged and counted as a homework grade.

  • Participate in the course via quality postings to the Graded Discussion Forum. During the semester, I will post items to which you may respond. At the end of the semester, you will be asked to select/compile postings and to state/defend the overall grade you believe you deserve. I will use a rubric to evaluate your selected contributions. Information about postings will be forthcoming as the semester progresses.

Do your best on the assignments given, being sure that you have followed specific directions, are thorough, and have submitted them on time. I have not built in extra credit assignments into the course. Ask questions in advance of a due date, an take advantage of the peer review feature.

2. With the MyGrades feature of Bb, you can see your grades for individual assignments. Please review your grades frequently. At the end of the semester, I calculate your grade based on the following percentages:

50% – Essays

25% – Homework

15% – Tests

10% – Participation (Graded Discussion Board Postings)

Number/Grade Equivalents:

93-100 A
90-92 A-
87-89 B+
83-86 B
80-82 B-
77-79 C+
70-76 C
67-69 D+
60-66 D
>60 F

IMPORTANT: New Financial Aid Guidelines require that final grades of NA (no assessment), NS (no show), WP or WF (Withdrawal Passing/Failing) be accompanied by a date. If that date is prior to a particular point in the semester, then your financial aid may be jeopardized. Therefore, should you decide not to participate in the course, be sure to drop the course through MyCCRI.

3. Factors that will negatively affect your grade.

(a) Plagiarism
An online course like this one requires the highest standard of academic honest and integrity. Once you enter this class, you must agree to do all of your own work written specifically for this course (no recycled papers). If you use outside sources (another’s words, ideas, or material) you must show documentation using the guidelines of the Modern Language Association (see our text for specific information). If essays are submitted that have been partially or entirely plagiarized, a grade of Zero will be assigned. A Zero assigned as an essay grade usually results in a failing grade for the course. Please read the College’s Policy on Academic Dishonesty for further information. Examples of plagiarism include:

  • Copying someone else’s assignment or paper and submitting it as your own.
  • Buying and submitting another student’s work or a professionally prepared paper as if it is your own.
  • Copying or paraphrasing words, phrases, sentences, passages without attributing them to the source where you found them.
  • Using someone’s ideas without giving credit.
  • Collaborating on assignments with someone else without the permission of the instructor.
  • And….submitting a paper you have submitted for another course. All work for this course must be original AND written specifically for this course.

(b) Late Work
Some students have difficulty with the online format because they are unable to adhere to deadlines. After the established due date, your work will NOT be accepted (Exceptions are made for documented reasons, such as jury duty, military duty, and the like.)

Due dates for assignments are listed with each assignment in Blackboard, at the beginning of each week in Blackboard, sent via an Announcement/email at the beginning of each week, and appear in the due-date calendar within Blackboard. I have also included a master schedule that you can review and print out, if necessary, to keep yourself on track.  As in all courses, the schedule may change so it is essential that you visit the course at least once a week and go to the assigned week where you will see both reminders and updates. 

If you are having a problem meeting the course requirements or submitting work promptly, contact me immediately. Waiting to contact me will affect your credibility and jeopardize your grade. You can email me at [email protected] from the email address of your choosing. Within Bb, CCRI email is the default, so you can email me from there as well. Regardless of how you email me, you must remember to check your email for my response. I will reply to whatever email address you selected.

(c) Not Reading/Following Directions
Essays and homework need to be submitted in sequence. That is, you need to submit Essay 1 before Essay 2. The essay assignments, in particular, become more complex as the course progresses. In effect, one helps you prepare for the other. For that reason, you cannot submit essays in lump fashion. That is, you cannot send in all essays at the same time! Doing so is not academically sound as you will not be getting the necessary feedback to develop your writing skills.

Each assignment must be submitted to me in a certain manner. Each assignment must be saved with your last name and the name of the assignment, as in Smith, HW1. Keep in mind that any attached document to a Bb assignment will be downloaded, making it essential that you save the document with some identifying feature (specifically your last name) so that I will be able to associate it with you for easy finding for document uploading after I correct it. (Please do not save your document with its title or the name of the assignment.) Following the naming protocol is essential for my filing system and for getting graded work back to you efficiently. Details are provided in Blackboard.

(d) Attendance
While you don’t have to physically attend the course by driving to campus, you will need to “attend” the course on a weekly basis. What that means is that you must log into Blackboard at least once a week (but I recommend daily, especially in the summer) to check for announcements, read/make postings, etc. Blackboard does keep track of when you log in and, in some instances, keeps track of specific pages you have visited.

Please note that during the fall and spring semester if you do not log into Blackboard during the first two weeks of classes and complete the Blackboard Orientation Test, I am required to report you as a “no show.” At that point, you will be dropped from the course. For the summer session, you have only two days to complete the Orientation Test.

(e) Starfish
To help ensure your success, I will be utilizing CCRI's Starfish, an online communication system, over the semester to communicate about your academic performance: missing work, low grades, etc. ALL students need help in college, but sometimes it is difficult to know who or what to ask. Starfish provides you with a central place to connect to the people and services that can help you be successful in this course and with your CCRI experience. 

Please frequently check your CCRI email and the Starfish portal and consider taking any recommended actions. You can also log-in to MyCCRI to access your Starfish Success Network. 

CODE of CONDUCT:

CCRI’s Student Handbook includes specific policies regarding student code of conduct. Even though this class is conducted online, these policies still apply. Specifically, treat others as you wish to be treated. For example, think before you email. When doing a peer review of a classmate’s work, offer relevant criticism in an appropriate manner.

SYSTEM OUTAGES:

At times, CCRI’s computer system or parts of it may be down for scheduled maintenance or for unknown, unplanned reasons. In the case of the former, I will notify you immediately so you can adjust your schedule accordingly. Either way, I will likely make due-date adjustments. You can check CCRI’s website for computer outages.

ACADEMIC ACCOMMODATIONS:

The Disability Services Office (DDS) provides support services and coordinates reasonable academic accommodations for students with documented disabilities under the ADA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. Students are responsible for identifying themselves to the DSS office and submitting appropriate documentation in advance of the requested accommodation. For more information, contact DSS: (401) 825-2164 in Warwick, (401) 333-7329 in Lincoln, (401) 455-6064 in Providence and (401) 851-1650 in Newport.

Review IMPORTANT DATES that will affect this course from the CCRI Academic Calendar for Spring 2022

Classes begin (ALL Locations)      Jan. 18
Verification of Enrollment/ Last Day to Drop/No refunds      Jan. 31
Spring Break March 7 - 13
Last day to withdraw from a class to a receive grade of “W"      March 29
Last week      May 8


I hope I have not overwhelmed you with all of the above. However, I want you to have a clear understanding of course goals and procedures within our online environment. Your success is important to me.

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