Western Civ

Syllabus: Summer 2014

Class starts June 2
Enrolled students may log in with their SURF credentials at http://miracosta.mrooms.net/.

Instructor: Lisa M. Lane

Welcome! Each week, students should:
1. read/listen to the textbook reading and lecture
2. take the Quiz (by Tuesday midnight)
3. post a primary source in the Primary Sources Board (by Wednesday midnight)
4. post a thesis/writing post in the Writing Assignment Board (opens Thursday - post by Sunday midnight)
5. participate in Discussion Forums (2-3 times each week)

Links to all of this are at the class website.

Chester Races 1926

How do I get into this class?

How much of my time will it take?

Is it a hard class?

Do I need to own a computer? What if something goes wrong with my computer?

Online classes require reliable access to a good computer with a reliable internet connection. If you don't own one or something goes wrong with your system or connection, you are expected to use computers at the campus library, other college library, or public library to complete your work on time.

1800 man and woman

It's an online class. Can't I just cheat?

Can I take the class at my own pace? Can I turn in late quizzes?

What books do I need?

What's this course cover? What's it count toward?

Where is the class schedule? When are things due?

The class schedule is an "interactive syllabus" consisting of the main page of the class in the Moodle learning management system. It is organized by date, like a syllabus you would be handed in class, but each item is a link. With the exception of the Contribution Assessment, all assignments are due on a set schedule (see the top of this page).

How does the grading work?

The course is graded on a simple 100-point scale, so that's a simple percentage.

Points Chart Percent
Weekly Quizzes
These contain multiple-choice questions from the textbook, lectures, and documents.
Primary Sources Boards
Posting a good source with full citation.
Writing Assignments
Following instructions fully for writing.
Discussion and Contribution
Self-assessment supported by fulfillment of student expectations (below).
Final Essay Exam
Based on thematic essay.

Class feedback is provided through Latest News emails on an as-needed basis, and through closing posts in writing assignment boards. Individual feedback is provided throughout the class: numeric percentage immediate grading on quizzes, scaled marking of primary source posts, and scaled grading of writing assignments. Late assignments are given lower priority and may not receive feedback. All feedback can be viewed in Grades. All work submitted on time will be graded within one week.

What are the Student Learning Outcomes for the course?

At the end of the course, students will be able to:
1. construct a historical thesis that could be supported by selected primary sources from the era covered by the course
2. estimate the correct era from which a primary source derives
3. articulate the causal and/or consequential elements of an event from the era covered by the course
4. analyze cultural expressions as evidence of an historical theme

What are the expectations for student work in this class?

  1. Lectures and primary source readings should be completed weekly.
    Lectures and primary source readings have been completed every week on schedule (A), weekly (B), most weeks (C), few weeks (D), rarely (F).
  2. Textbook readings should be completed weekly.
    Textbook readings have been completed every week on schedule (A), weekly (B), most weeks (C), few weeks (D), rarely (F).
  3. Students should post at least one primary source in the Primary Sources Board by Wednesday night each week.
    Primary sources have been completed every week on schedule with primary source (A), weekly (B), most weeks or some sources weren't primary (C), few weeks or many secondary sources (D), rarely or all sources secondary (F).
  4. Students should post every Writing Assignment, and on time.
    All Writing Assignments are posted on time every time (A), all but once (B), occasionally (C), rarely (D), not at all (F)
  5. Writing assignment theses must be interpretive.
    Theses are highly interpretive (A), solidly interpretive (B), primarily factual with some interpretation (C), factual (D) or not a thesis (F).
  6. Writing assignments must use the required number of primary sources from the Primary Sources Boards.
    The required number of sources used in the essay are all primary and from Boards (A or B), mostly primary or not all from Boards (C), mostly secondary or not from Boards (D), all secondary or not used(F).
  7. Use of information from class materials, lectures, and assigned readings is expected.
    Writing Assignments, discussions, and comments on primary sources have made full use (A), good use (B), some use (C), little use (D), or no use (F) of class materials and activities.
  8. Posted Primary Sources and those used in Writing Assignments must be fully cited with artist/author, title, date, and a live link to a page where the item is featured.
    Sources are fully cited (A), almost all fully cited (B), mostly cited (C), not all cited (D) or not cited (F).
  9. Discussion should be participated in at least three times a week, and comments posted that respond to others and move the discussion forward.
    Full participation took place with every discussion and were responsive (A), one or two comments were posted in discussion and/or were helpful and responsive (B), a helpful comment was posted in each discussion or just answered posted question (C), a discussion was missed or comments posted were mostly "I agree" or just answered posted question (D), little participation (F)
  10. Writing must be at the college level.
    Writing in the essay is at the college level or higher (A), at the college freshman English 100 level (B), at the high school level (C), below the high school level (D or F).
  11. Students should log in at least three times a week.
    Logs in more than three times a week (A), 2-3 times a week (B), once a week (C), less than weekly (D or F).
  12. Students should respond to guidance from the instructor, learn from full-group (rather than individual) feedback, and get help from the Help page and college resources as needed.
    Responds to instructor guidance as provided through summary posts, Thursday posts, Latest News, examples, replies, and messages - always (A), almost always (B), mostly (C), occasionally (D), never (F).
  13. Students should be helpful to others through commenting, suggesting, or providing good examples in the Boards, Help page, or discussion.
    Is helpful to other students weekly (A), regularly (B), occasionally (C), rarely (D), not at all (F)
  14. Student work should reflect the student's own interests.
    Writing for theses and essays has been obviously related to the student's own interests every week (A), most of the time (B), occasionally (C), rarely (D), never (F).

What about cheating and plagiarism?

Academic dishonesty can lead to F grades on quizzes, contribution assessments (as a result of plagiarism in discussion forums), and the final exam. If cheating or plagiarism is discovered at any time (and I'm very good at it), all of the student's previous work will be checked, and grades revised as determined by the instructor. Cheating includes copying phrasing or paraphrasing from the textbook, documents, or other course materials without quoting and/or citing the source. It also includes creating work together with another person (see Indiana University's plagiarism self-quiz). While you are welcome to study and talk together, all work you turn in or post must be your own, since all grades are individual. To protect yourself in an on-line environment, make sure that your quiz/test answers in no way resemble those of your colleagues.

What about my disability?

If you have a disability, you may contact Disabled Student Programs and Services at the Oceanside campus at 760-795-6658. DSPS-registered students are entitled to accommodations, some of which will not be needed. There is no timed testing in this class, and all material should be drafted outside the system and pasted in. Lectures are available in both text and audio, and most videos have text files. If you have difficulty with any assigned item, please let me know.

How do I ask questions?


Last updated: 20 May 2014