Classroom Protocol (Attendance, Class Participation, & Classroom Behavior):

Education should be a “contact” activity, for participant-observers, not one simply for spectators or audience members. This is a lecture and (especially) discussion class in which the dialogues and exchanges between instructor and students, and among the students themselves, are essential for the full functioning of the “mini-society” of the classroom. Spirited, but friendly, debate, as well as active listening, is absolutely essential for critical analysis, intellectual development, mutual respect, human creativity, political pluralism, and civic participation in a democratic society. There will be an emphasis in this class on discussion and interactivity.

The purpose of discussion in our course is to provide a forum in which students can safely and supportively ask questions, present and debate their ideas, receive and interpret new information and perspectives, and develop and clarify their thinking. Students are expected to prepare for, attend, and participate in discussions as actively as possible. Therefore, attendance, promptness, attentiveness, and positive participation with relevant comments and questions are vitally important. Students are also strongly encouraged to share items/stories/miscellanea relevant to the class as another form of participation.

I expect students to be on time to class and to silence their electronics (e.g., phones, iPods, etc.) while in the classroom, as well as being otherwise respectful of fellow students and the learning environment. Coming to class late, leaving early, texting, constantly checking cell phones, using a computer, tablet, or phone for non-class activities, and other distracting and disruptive activities are forms of negative participation.

You may only use an electronic device (e.g., laptop, iPad, cell phone) in class for class-related purposes (e.g., to take notes, to quickly research something). Other uses are disrespectful and are a negative form of class participation.

Participation is worth approximately 1/8 (12.5%) of the course grade.

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