Sample Syllabus Statements

Albright College Faculty Resources – Sample Syllabus Statements

Faculty are encouraged, although not required, to include statements about academic support resources in their syllabi. For the convenience of faculty, examples of such statements are provided here for:

Faculty are strongly encouraged to all statements in their syllabi, so that students know where to turn for support.  In addition, faculty should follow the Faculty Handbook requirements in constructing their syllabi.

Overall syllabus statement on academic support for traditional undergraduates

Albright College students have academic support resources available to them at no charge. The Academic Learning Center (ALC) offers course-specific tutoring, academic skills workshops, hands on learning strategies instruction, and academic counseling to supplement faculty advisement. The Writing Center offers tutoring to assist with writing and reading support for any class. The Student Accessibility and Advocacy Office (SAA) is the source for impairment-related accommodations related to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and its Amendments (ADAAA). Students who receive accommodations from the SAA office should meet with course instructors privately and in a timely manner to discuss the Academic Accommodation Letter (AAL) provided by that office. Please note that IEPs and 504 plans do not apply to college level courses.  All three offices are in the administration building. For help or further information, contact the ALC at academiclearningcenter@albright.edu or 610-921-7662; the WC at writingcenter@albright.edu or 610-921-7540; and the Student Accessibility and Advocacy office at SAA@albright.edu or 610-929-6639.

Academic Learning Center Syllabus Statement

The ALC offers various resources to assist Albright students with their academic success. Students have academic support resources available to them at no charge. The Academic Learning Center, in the Administration Building, offers course-specific tutoring, academic skills workshops, hands on learning strategies instruction, and academic counseling which includes one-on-one consultations on study skills, time management, note-taking, and learning strategies to supplement faculty advisement. The ALC is located in the Library/Administration Building, and can be reached at 610-921-7662 and academiclearningcenter@albright.edu.

Writing Center Syllabus Statement for Traditional/Residential Courses

You are encouraged to visit the Writing Center early and often throughout the semester to help build a strong foundation for writing in this course and in all of your courses. The center’s peer tutors and director will work with you at any stage of the writing process, from developing and organizing ideas to revising and editing drafts. Rather than editing your work for you, writing tutors will actively engage you in meaningful conversations about your writing and help you learn new strategies. Tutors are also available to discuss and practice approaches to managing the college reading workload and reading more effectively. The center is located on the first floor of the Administration Building and can be reached at writingcenter@albright.edu or (610) 921-7540. Appointments are strongly recommended to ensure availability. You can view the current schedule and make an appointment through the online appointment system at http://alb.mywconline.com or visit the Center in person for assistance. Online chat and video options are available.

Writing Center Syllabus Statement for School of Professional Studies and Online Courses

You are encouraged to visit the Writing Center early and often to help build a strong foundation for writing in this course and in all of your courses. The center’s peer tutors and director will work with you at any stage of the writing process, from developing and organizing ideas to revising and editing drafts. Rather than editing your work for you, writing tutors will actively engage you in meaningful conversations about your writing and help you learn new strategies. Tutors are also available to discuss and practice approaches to managing the college reading workload and reading more effectively. The center is located on the main Reading, PA campus on the first floor of the Administration Building and can be reached at writingcenter@albright.edu or (610) 921-7540. Students unable to visit in person can have telephone, online chat, video, or e-mail-based sessions. For more information on making an appointment or on WC services for distance learning students, including online services, please visit www.albright.edu/academics/wc-adp-info.html. The Writing Center may not be available during some holidays or when day classes are not in session.

Americans with Disabilities Acts and Amendments (ADAAA) Syllabus Statement on Services for Students in the traditional residential college program

Consistent with the ADAAA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, Albright College welcomes students with disabilities into the college’s educational programs. If you need impairment-related academic adjustments in this course, please contact Sherry Young, Director of Student Accessibility and Advocacy, by email at syoung@albright.edu, by phone at 610-929-6639, or in her office, on the first floor of the Library/Administration Building. Students who use accommodations should meet with course instructors privately and in a timely manner to discuss their Academic Accommodation Letter (AAL). Please note that IEPs and 504 plans do not apply to college-level courses.

Americans with Disabilities Acts and Amendments (ADAAA) Syllabus Statement for Students in the School of Professional Studies

Consistent with the ADAAA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, Albright College welcomes students with disabilities into the college’s educational programs. If you need impairment-related academic adjustments in this course, please contact Sherry Young, Director of Student Accessibility and Advocacy, by email at syoung@albright.edu, by phone at 610-929-6639, or in her office, on the first floor of the Library/Administration Building on the Reading campus. Students who use accommodations should meet with course instructors privately and in a timely manner to discuss their Academic Accommodation Letter (AAL). Keep in mind that timeframes of SPS classes are delivered in an accelerated fashion. Please note that IEPs and 504 plans do not apply to college-level courses.

Library Services Sample Syllabus Statement

The Gingrich Library provides resources to assist Albright students with their class projects and research needs. Library materials include books, e-books, print and electronic journals, databases and DVDs. All students have complete access to the Gingrich Library catalog, electronic books, and its electronic databases from on-campus, in residence halls or off-campus. Reference librarians are available to answer questions and help students use resources and find appropriate materials. Students are encouraged to contact a librarian at any stage of the research process. The portal to the library is located at http://library.albright.edu.  Real-time “Ask a librarian” chat services are often available on the library main page.

Grading Policy Sample Syllabus Statement

Grades are often posted in more than one location: on Self Service, on Moodle, by code on a class’ own website, etc. Please note that grades posted on Self Service are from the College’s information system and therefore are considered the student’s official  grades. Students are responsible for knowing their grades and academic status and inquiring to professors about any discrepancies.

Course Unit System and Fourth Hour of Quality Sample Syllabus Statement

Albright College uses a course unit system to support a greater depth of learning for students. Because each course unit is the equivalent of four credits, compared to the usual three credit course at schools using the credit system.  Classes that meet only three hours per week also require one extra hour per week of learning over the 15-week term, totaling 15 hours of work outside the classroom.  These 15 hours are above and beyond the usual course readings, homework, and examinations. These learning activities must result in something the faculty member can evaluate (paper, presentation, journal, reflection paper, problem set, etc.). For this course, the fourth hour requirement is met by _______________.   Albright’s rigorous academic program expects approximately two to three hours of work outside class for each instructional hour of class.

Classroom Recording Policy Sample Syllabus Statement

The audio or visual recording of class lectures, discussions, simulations, and other course-related activity by either students or instructors is governed by the College’s class recording policy, available in the Catalog. Albright’s policy on class recording balances the needs of students who are differently abled, the intellectual property concerns of its instructors, and the privacy of its students. Any audio or visual recording made by a student during a class, regardless of the recording device, requires the instructor’s written consent prior to the class and the student’s signed agreement with the terms of the College’s policy. Prior to a student recording of any class activity, the student and the instructor must sign a recording agreement and file it with the Office of Student Accessibility and Advocacy (if the recording is an approved disability accommodation) or with the Academic Dean’s office (if not an accommodation). Violations of this Class Recording Policy may be directed through academic dishonesty procedures or the Office of Community Standards, and could involve civil or criminal violations.

Diversity and Inclusion Sample Syllabus Statements and Links to Other Institutions’ Statements, and Considerations for Creating Such Statements

Matt Fotis – Inclusivity Statement (with physical and mental ability added by Beth Kiester)Every student in this class, regardless of background, sex, gender, race, ethnicity, class, political affiliation, physical or mental ability or any identity category, is a valued and equal member of the group. We all bring different experiences to this class and no one experience has more value or import than another. In fact, it is our different experiences that will enrich the course content. I encourage every student to share their own experiences as they are relevant to the course, but I also stress that no student is ever presumed to speak for anything or anyone more than their own experience or point of view. Furthermore, in this classroom, you have the right to determine your own identity. You have the right to be called by whatever name you wish, and for that name to be pronounced correctly. You have the right to be referred to by whatever pronoun you identify. You have the right to adjust those things at any point. If there are aspects of the instruction of this course that result in barriers to your inclusion or a sense of alienation from the course content, please contact me privately without fear of reprisal. If you feel uncomfortable contacting me, please contact the Office of the Dean of Students.

Rob Seesengood – Inclusivity Statement

In class discussions, please feel free to discuss openly, seriously and passionately. I will not, however, tolerate disruptive or insulting remarks, gender or racial slurs, or other forms of bullying, intimidation or hate speech. Publication of the remarks or questions or work of any classmate – in any form, written or recorded – without clear consent will be regarded as a violation of academic integrity and treated as such. I expect you to act with respect for this space, this subject, our process and each other.

Ian Rhile – Inclusivity Statement
I view the individual identities and values of students in our class as a strength, and I aim to create a class atmosphere in which all students can learn. Those identities consist of a number of traits and beliefs, such as gender and gender identity, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity and national identity, political affiliation, age, intellectual and physical ability, socio-economic class, faith and non-faith perspectives, military experience, and other characteristics. I strive to do my best to respect this diversity throughout the semester. If you have an experience related to the class that contradicts this commitment or there is an aspect of the course that could be reasonably modified to improve your learning, please contact me. The Compass includes information about how the College handles discrimination and hate speech, sexual assault and rape and sexual harassment (including Title IX) and other policies, and the Dean of Students may be a resource to you if you have a concern. In addition, see the statement about Student Accessibility and Advocacy.

Themes from statements at other institutions, and links to their statement: U. of Central Florida; Winona State U. ; Yale U.; U. of Central Missouri; U. of Delaware; Purdue U.

  • Statements may be framed in terms of classroom civility, inclusion/inclusivity, diversity, equality/equity, etc.
  • They may refer to nondiscrimination, sexual harassment/title IX, anti-bias and disabilities policies explicitly, or to diversity/inclusion committees or plans.
  • Lists of identities are common but not always present. List: background/experiences, sex, gender/gender identity/gender expression, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity/national origin/national identity/region, class, political affiliation/ideology, age, intellectual and physical ability, income/socio-economic class, religion/ faith and non-faith perspectives, military
    experience/military or veteran status, primary language, education, family status, cognitive style, communication style, genetic information.
  • Recurring language: respect, valued, reference to the mission/values of the institution, community, inclusive environment, intersection, beliefs, backgrounds, experiences, behaviors, worldviews,
    contact instructor, dean, committee
  • Negatives: threaten, harass, discriminate, bully, intimidate, hate speech
  • In The Compass, there are the following: anti-discrimination policy (hate speech in particular), Title IX policy for sexual assault/rape, sexual harassment. There are several diversity pages, including the Foundational Definitions on the CITE-C, on the Albright website.

Questions to consider – from Brown University Inclusivity Links

  • What are your discipline’s conventions and assumptions? How might students with varying backgrounds respond to them?
  • What role does your respect for and engagement with diversity in the classroom play in your personal teaching philosophy?
  • What positive learning outcomes can come from respecting difference in the classroom? How can you highlight these?
  • What do you want your students to know about your expectations regarding creating and maintaining a classroom space where differences are respected and valued?
  • Is your statement inclusive of different types of diversity, including, but not limited to, race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, age, socioeconomic status, religion, and disability?
  • Which campus resources would you like to direct your students to for further support?
  • What kind of classroom environment would your students like to see? How might you include them in the conversation about standards for classroom civility?

The Faculty Handbook states the following regarding syllabus content:

XII.D. Syllabi. During the first class of every course, the faculty member will distribute or post a syllabus which must include: name, time and location of course; instructor contact information and office hours; course description; learning objectives; readings and other course materials; number and type of assignments; course schedule; and methods of evaluating student performance, including point distribution. Statements regarding College policies on academic dishonesty, learning disability accommodations, and instructor expectations for student conduct are strongly encouraged. As the course progresses, the instructor may distribute or post a modified syllabus to achieve the course goals as necessary.

Syllabi should also describe an attendance policy and any potential impact on course grading. For courses meeting three hours per week, a statement on the fourth hour of quality is also required (see other links in Faculty Resources regarding these two policies).

Templates of sample syllabi statements on these issues and related polices are available on the Academic Affairs website for faculty resources at:  http://www.albright.edu/academics/fac_res/course_dev.html.