This course applies an activity based learning model which relies heavily on your active participation in the classroom. You are expected to complete the assigned readings and come prepared to engage the class in meaningful conversation and activities.
You are encouraged to use your knowledge and experiences to build, test, and modify your own concepts through dialogues with the instructor and fellow students. Much of your learning will occur as you prepare for and participation in discussions about the course material. The course material has been carefully chosen to bring the real world into class discussion while also illustrating fundamental concepts.
Preparation for class
Complete all of the assigned reading. As you complete the reading please take notes using the following mindset:
- What are or two key points you took away from each assigned reading?
- What are one or two key points you learned from the set of readings for a particular session?
- If you were facilitating today’s discussion, what question would you ask your fellow classmates?
Class will be a mixture of class discussions and class activities. Do not expect to be taught the material in the assigned readings. We will assume that you have completed the assigned readings and are prepared to discuss the readings intelligently. Through this discussion you will gain a deeper and more meaningful understanding of the core concepts. If you do not complete the assigned readings you will have trouble following along with the class discussion; you will not get as much out of class and you may find the exams more challenging.
In-class activities provide the core of our activity based learning model. These activities are designed to be completed in 50 minutes or less and help a student develop a more genuine understanding of the class materials. Each activity has a corresponding worksheet. Each student must hand in a completed worksheet to receive credit for completing the activity. Worksheets are graded based on displaying due diligence. If the student hands in a completed worksheet and has clearly been engaged in the activity they receive full credit. If a student is absent from class, does not hand in a worksheet or clearly had not done their due diligence, they receive zero credit for the activity.
Proposed Exam Questions
Each week we will cover new material. You are expected to complete the required reading before the start of class each Tuesday. In addition to completing the required reading each student is required to draft a proposed multiple choice exam question that is based on the required readings and post the exam question (along with the set of answers (identifying the correct answer) and the reading this question came from) to the class site. This proposed exam question must be posted to the class site before the start of class on Tuesday.
Students are also required to review all of the proposed exam questions posted to the class site before the start of class on Thursday and to vote on the three best questions. You may not vote for one of your own questions! It is very likely that you will see many of the best exam questions on upcoming exams.
We will track how many votes each of you receive. The six students who receive the most votes throughout the semester will earn extra credit and will have their final grade for the course increased as follows:
1st and 2nd place – One full letter grade
3rd and 4th place – two fractions of a letter grade
5th and 6th place – one fraction of a letter grade
Posting a question each week and voting on the best questions is a requirement for this class. For each three weeks that a student either fails to post a proposed question on time or fails to vote for their three favorite proposed questions on time, their final grade will be reduced by a fraction of a letter grade.
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