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Syllabus

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Course Materials
Assignments
Exams
Grading
Getting Help

BYU Course Outcomes

  1. Employ informed and flexible processes for writing and speaking, including: creating and/or finding ideas about which to write; collecting evidence and data; planning and drafting; revising; editing; and designing or presenting a message so that it is successfully understood by a specified audience.
  2. Write coherent and unified texts, including effective introductions, clear thesis statements, supporting details, transitions, and strong conclusions.
  3. Use various methods of invention, organization, and style to adapt written and oral forms of communication to a specific rhetorical situation.
  4. Utilize the library and electronic resources to locate relevant information, assess its reliability and usefulness, and effectively and ethically incorporate it into their own writing by following an appropriate style of documentation.
  5. Write in a correct, clear, and graceful prose style.
  6. Effectively evaluate and comment on the writing of others to facilitate revision.
  7. Analyze rhetorical aspects of audience, purpose, and context to communicate technical information effectively in written, oral, and visual media.
  8. Recognize structures or genres typically used in science and engineering, understand the processes that produce them, and the organizational and stylistic conventions characteristic of them, and apply this knowledge to their own writing tasks.
  9. Demonstrate familiarity with the literature relevant to their fields of study.

Course Learning Outcomes

After completing the reading and writing assignments for this course, you should be able to:

  1. Display detailed knowledge of the various genres commonly used within technical communication. (e.g., resumes, analytical reports, proposals, process descriptions/instructions, oral presentations, memoranda, business letters, email).
  2. Employ effective research skills, including conducting primary and secondary research, using computer resources, and evaluating and citing sources.
  3. Assess audience needs, audience types and address a target audience effectively in your writing.
  4. Employ the conventions of Edited American English.
  5. Use effective management techniques when writing collaboratively.
  6. Conduct effective user-testing.
  7. Write and edit documents effectively, focusing on the organization, style, and format appropriate to audience needs and the writing context.
  8. Create effective oral presentations.

Course Materials

Note: Please be aware that the textbook has left out chapter 2, and the appendices are incorrectly sequenced; however, the page numbers mentioned in the course are correct. Also, if the above text is unavailable, feel free to use the standard 11th edition textbook. Keep in mind that the page references won’t correspond to those cited in the lessons, but you should be able to use the table of contents and chapter headings to find the right page.

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Assignments

This course consists of twenty-one lessons and a final exam; there are eleven graded and ten ungraded assignments. The following is a breakdown of all graded assignments in this course and their corresponding percentage value.

Lesson Assignment Grading
1 Writing Process Evaluation and Writing Goals 1% (P/F)
3 Audience Assessment 5%
5 Letter and Resume 10%
7 Set of Instructions Topic Analysis 1% (P/F)
11 Copy of Instructions with user testing memo 1% (P/F)
12 (NOTE: Cannot be submitted within 7 days of Lesson 11.) Set of Instructions 20%
16 Formal Proposal 10%
17 Analysis of Journal Article 5%
19 Author First of Analytical Report with progress report memo 1% (P/F)
20 (NOTE: Cannot be submitted within 7 days of Lesson 19.) Analytical Report 28%
21 Oral Presentation 10%
Final Exam 8%

The information, instruction, and examples in your textbook should be the basis for all your writing. It will also be the basis for your instructor’s grading and for the final exam. You will submit your completed papers electronically through your course. Please save your file as a .doc or .pdf. Use the course number, your first and last name, and the assignment name for the filename. For example, "ENGL316_LoriSteadman_MyBriefHistory.doc. Submit your file online for grading.

As you prepare to submit assignments, please consider the following:

Important Note:

Lessons 11 and 19 are drafts of Lessons 12 and 20, respectively. Therefore, you should not submit Lesson 12 within 7 days of Lesson 11 or Lesson 20 within 7 days of Lesson 19. If you do submit Lessons 11 and 12 within a 7 day period, or Lessons 19 and 20 within a 7 day period, you will receive a failing grade on Lesson 11 or Lesson 19 respectively. This delay gives your instructor time to read and give you feedback on your drafts. If your instructor returns Lesson 11 or 19 before the 7 days are complete, you can then proceed to turn in Lessons 12 or 20. Please note that this is a firm rule for this course; please DO NOT ask your instructor to make an exception for you!
Please note that there are four assignments in this course that are worth only 1% (graded on a pass/fail basis). Though these assignments figure only 4% of your final grade, you must pass all of them to pass the course. Please take these seriously.

Reflective Memo

At the beginning of each writing assignment, you should include a Reflective Memo. This memo should be at least ½ a page, single-spaced and should be submitted, obviously, in memo format. Your statement should include the following information:

Your Reflective Statement is also the place to note any concerns or difficulties you would like your instructor to consider when grading your paper.

If you have a question about the work in this course, please email your instructor. However, please be considerate and read all course materials related to your question before contacting your instructor. Many times students ask questions that are already answered in the course materials.

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Exams

1 proctored instructor-graded exam.

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Grading

Each major assignment in this course includes a detailed grading sheet which outlines how and where points for the assignment will be allocated. Generally, your work will be graded on the following criteria:

High grades on an assignment are a reflection of truly superior work, rather than just the absence of errors or the meeting of basic assignment requirements. Low grades usually result from inadequate development, excessive errors in reasoning or grammar, or a poor application of the technical principles the lesson teaches. There are two likely causes for a failing grade: a paper which, no matter how good, ignores the assignment parameters for the given lesson.

Lesson Submitted Assignment Percentage
1 Writing Process Evaluation and Writing Goals 1% (P/F)
3 Audience Assessment 5%
5 Letter and Resume 10%
7 Set of Instructions Topic Analysis 1% (P/F)
11 Copy of Instructions with user testing memo 1% (P/F)
12 Set of Instructions 20%
16 Formal Proposal 10%
17 Analysis of Journal Article 5%
19 Author First of Analytical Report with progress report memo 1% (P/F)
20 Analytical Report 28%
21 Oral Presentation 10%
Final Exam 8%

Grading Scale

A 100 93
A- 92 90
B+ 89 87
B 86 83
B- 82 80
C+ 79 77
C 76 73
C- 72 70
D+ 69 67
D 66 63
D- 62 60
E (fail) 59 or below

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Plagiarism

Please understand that plagiarism is theft. You commit this punishable act whenever you steal another’s words or ideas and pass them off as your own. Your intent to steal is irrelevant: the presence of another’s words or ideas in your work without proper citation of the source constitutes plagiarism.

Plagiarism is committed in the following ways:

Unintentional plagiarism, usually the result of sloppy writing habits and research, will result in your instructor failing your paper.

Intentional, deliberate plagiarism will result in your failing this course! This is a “one-strike you’re out” policy, meaning one instance of deliberate plagiarism, even on a small assignment, will result in an automatic “E” grade for this course. Please understand that plagiarism is a serious offence.

Copyright Notice

The materials used in connection with this online course are only for the use of students enrolled in this course for purposes associated with this course and may not be retained or further disseminated. Any copying or further dissemination of these materials may be subject to applicable U.S. Copyright Laws. For questions or more information, please visit the BYU Copyright Licensing Office website.

“Members of the BYU community who willfully disregard this Copyright Policy or the BYU Copyright Guidelines place themselves individually at risk of legal action and may incur personal liability for their conduct. The unauthorized use or distribution of copyrighted material, including unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing, may subject individuals to civil and criminal liabilities, including actual and statutory damages, costs and fees of litigation, fines, and imprisonment

Violations of the Copyright Policy may result in university disciplinary action including termination of university enrollment or employment.” (Emphasis added. Excerpt taken from the BYU Copyright Policy)

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University Policy - Title IX Statement

Preventing & Responding to Sexual Misconduct

In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Brigham Young University prohibits unlawful sex discrimination against any participant in its education programs or activities. The university also prohibits sexual harassment—including sexual violence—committed by or against students, university employees, and visitors to campus. As outlined in university policy, sexual harassment, dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking are considered forms of "Sexual Misconduct" prohibited by the university.

University policy requires all university employees in a teaching, managerial, or supervisory role to report all incidents of Sexual Misconduct that come to their attention in any way, including but not limited to face-to-face conversations, a written class assignment or paper, class discussion, email, text, or social media post. Incidents of Sexual Misconduct should be reported to the Title IX Coordinator at t9coordinator@byu.edu or (801) 422-8692. Reports may also be submitted through EthicsPoint at https://titleix.byu.edu/report or 1-888-238-1062 (24-hours a day).

BYU offers confidential resources for those affected by Sexual Misconduct, including the university’s Victim Advocate, as well as a number of non-confidential resources and services that may be helpful. Additional information about Title IX, the university’s Sexual Misconduct Policy, reporting requirements, and resources can be found at http://titleix.byu.edu or by contacting the university’s Title IX Coordinator.

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Accessibility Notice

BYU is committed to providing a working and learning atmosphere which reasonably accommodates persons with disabilities who are otherwise qualified to participate in BYU's programs and activities. In this spirit, BYU Independent Study aspires to improve web accessibility for users. While not required by law, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Levels A and AA provide a wide range of helpful recommendations to make Web content more accessible. BYU Independent Study strives to apply WCAG 2.0 recommendations where feasible, but may deviate from any recommendations that would result in an undue hardship to BYU Independent Study or alterations to program and course content and objectives. If you have questions about accessibility, or if you need to report problems with any accessibility features please see our Accessibilities and Accommodations Web Page.

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Course Policies

These policies are specific to this course. For additional information about general policies, please refer to Independent Study Course Policies page.

Assignments

11 instructor-graded writing assignments, may not be resubmitted. 1 oral presentation assignment, may not be resubmitted.

Exams

1 proctored instructor-graded exam, 1 retake allowed for a fee, must pass to earn credit for the course

Retake an exam for a fee.

Note, If you request an exam retake, you must complete the exam before the last day of finals for that semester.

Getting Help

Please use the help menu in this course to contact Independent Study or your instructor. You can find a list of free tutors available to BYU Independent Study students on the Free Tutoring Services website.

Note: The Harold B. Lee Library website provides a number of online resources and librarians are available via phone, chat, and email to answer questions about library-related issues.

Inappropriate Use of Course Content

All course materials (e.g., outlines, handouts, syllabi, exams, quizzes, media, lecture content, audio and video recordings, etc.) are proprietary. Students are prohibited from posting or selling any such course materials without the express written permission of BYU Independent Study. To do so is a violation of the Brigham Young University Honor Code.

Copyright © 2016 Brigham Young University. All rights reserved.

Published by the
Department of Independent Study
Division of Continuing Education
Brigham Young University
120 MORC
Provo, Utah 84602-1514
USA