Classroom Community: Together as a class we will work to build an inclusive environment for learning for all students. This kind of community takes work and will require all of us to be open to learning from each other. All comments made in Zoom and in discussions need to be respectful.

Student Input: Much of the course design is flexible and can be adapted. I will ask for class feedback in many course decisions, including a review of this syllabus. This is especially important since the course is fully online. My goal is for you to get as much as possible out of this course given your individual areas of interest and strength, while at the same time to help you develop additional relevant skills and knowledge based on your goals.

Personal Pronoun Statement: We are generally identified by our legal names, and we have personal pronouns that we would prefer. My own pronouns are she/her/hers. The name or pronouns that a person goes by do not necessarily indicate anything about that person’s gender or identity. We should not assume that we can guess someone’s pronoun based on how they appear or act, so please feel free to inform me which pronouns you use. I am happy to change my usage at any time during the semester. I am committed to providing a safe, comfortable, and inclusive environment for all students.

Technology: You will need a computer with video/audio or a smartphone with these capabilities; internet; and a cuny.edu email address to join the CUNY Academic Commons (CAC) (How to join the Commons) as well as to access Blackboard (guide to accessing BB). With all technologies, issues arise. I will do my best to support you through any technical issues related to the course and/or to direct you to resources.

Zoom: We are using Zoom as our platform for synchronous meetings on Tuesday evenings. (Here is a zoom video guide if needed). Zoom can work on a smartphone or tablet and from the web, but using the downloaded application on a computer will vastly improve its reliability. Whenever possible, please keep your video on during the synchronous session. Conversely, I recommend you each stay on “mute” until you are ready to jump into the conversation to avoid your mic picking up background noise while someone else is talking. We will be using several features of Zoom, including the chat, share screen, and breakout groups, which I will go over during our first synchronous meeting. We will discuss whether we all want to pre-record these sessions to save the video and the chats, so that if you miss a synchronous session for any reason, you can access the content. We will take a class vote on this on Day 1.

Communication: I will communicate with you by email, but you may also receive communication via our course group on the Commons (which will notify you by email) or via Blackboard which may send reminder emails about paper due dates. On the Commons, if you click your avatar picture in the upper right corner, you can edit your contact email to your preferred email if you do not want to use your CUNY email account that was required to set up your account. You can also use the discussion forum in our Commons group to ask for help with technology or clarify logistics of the course from your fellow classmates and me. In general if you have a question, post it to the group or email me (LAnderst@qcc.cuny.edu) directly.

Attendance & Participation: Because this is a course that is meeting only online once a week, attendance and participation are important. Please contribute to each class session and be prepared for class through both the asynchronous work and synchronous meetings. I will do everything I can to help support your success in our course during this pandemic. Please email me if you need to miss class or if you fall behind on your work so that we can create a plan for you to complete the course work if it is possible.

Assignment Processes: Informal assignments (discussion board posts) will be completed on the CUNY Academic Commons. The CAC will involve a learning curve with the technology. For this and many other reasons, I will not be enforcing a strict lateness policy. If you cannot turn something in by the due date for any reason, please request an extension. In your email, please request the additional length of time you expect to need. Formal, graded papers will be turned in via the Assignments area on our course Blackboard page. (How to upload assignments).

Accessibility: Your access to and success in our class matter a great deal to me. While I work hard to make our class accessible, I understand that you may have access needs that I have not addressed, especially in the online format. Access is an ongoing process. Please contact me to discuss your access needs. CUNY Policy and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability. For accommodations, students with disabilities of any kind (including learning, physical, and mental disabilities) or those who suspect they may have a disability, whether permanent or temporary, are encouraged to contact Clare Wilson, manager of Student Disability Services at disabilityservices@gc.cuny.edu; 212-817-7400; Student Affairs, room 7301). 

Academic Integrity: It is an essential skill in graduate school to be able to enter into critical conversations, properly citing others as you make your own claims. Please use the citation format with which you are most comfortable (MLA, APA, Chicago are all acceptable). The Graduate Center provides a helpful guide called “Avoiding and Detecting Plagiarism.” The Student Handbook also provides more information about the definitions and policies regarding Academic Honesty and Academic Integrity. If you have any questions about citation or what constitutes plagiarism, please get in touch with me. The consequences for plagiarism are significant: “Any student who has submitted a paper, examination, project, or other academic work in part or in full not his or her own without appropriate attribution is subject to disciplinary charges. Such charges may result in the imposition of a grade of ‘F’ or other penalties and sanctions, including suspension and termination of matriculation” (Student Handbook).

Incomplete or “INC” Grades: Incomplete (INC) grades will be given at the discretion of the instructor and with a clear timeline for completing the required work. As noted on the GC website, “After one year, an incomplete (‘INC’) will automatically become a permanent incomplete,” and “Students will not normally be regarded as making satisfactory progress toward their degrees if they have more than two INC’s on their records.” A complete statement of the policy is available on the GC web site.

Student Services and Support at the GC: The GC has a wealth of services available for current students. Given the current online modalities across CUNY, though, some of these services may be operating only remotely or not at all during the fall semester.

Writing Center: The Writing Center, located in room 3300.10, assists graduate students in the cultivation of writerly skills and habits through individual consultations, workshops, and other programming. ​Consultants can assist with a variety of big and small writing concerns including: brainstorming class projects, planning research papers, preparing conference proposals, and improving clarity and flow. They can be contacted at 212-817-7425 or writingcenter@gc.cuny.edu. Their Commons page also provides information about remote services and online workshops.

Wellness Center: The Wellness Center Student Counseling Services offers short-term individual and group counseling and psychotherapy, couples counseling, consultation and referral services, and a variety of programs and workshops relevant to graduate student life. These include workshops on topics from time management to mindfulness meditation. Our services are confidential, and they are available free of charge to matriculated students. To make an appointment, stop by Room 6422, to fill out a Request for Services form. Appointments are then made based on the student’s availability indicated on this form. All Requests for Services are confidential. For your convenience, you may e-mail the form to us at wellness@gc.cuny.edu.

Library Workshops: We will hold part of one class meeting with Roxane Shirazi, a librarian designated to support film studies. She will share film related databases and resources specific to our course. Additionally, the Mina Rees library staff can assist individual students with research and documentation related to course projects, and they offer a number of research and library related workshops. Information on these workshops can be found here: https://library.gc.cuny.edu/events/list/

*Note: Many of these policies are adapted from Dr. Mondello’s summer 2020 MALS course.