Cathlena Martin


CA101 Syllabus


Fall 2007

101.04 Schedule
101.13 Schedule
Grade book

Communication Arts I develops the writing and speaking processes that will empower you as students, as professionals in your careers, and as citizens in your communities. The course includes writing four essays that are revised through multiple drafts and carefully edited before submission. At least three oral presentations are made in the course of the semester.

Course Description:
Communication scholars and researchers have increasingly emphasized the importance of four key elements in communication instruction: first-hand experience, addressing real audiences, reflective assessment, and community building within the classroom, the university, and the world. The individual and group assignments in Communication Arts will help you develop responsibility for your own learning and personal integrity in both the classroom and the community. As engaged citizens, your writing and speaking can and should make a difference.

Course Objectives:
1. Distinguish between oral and written styles and adapt both oral and written messages for specific audiences and purposes.
2. Prepare written and oral communication assignments via a process approach through rhetorical invention, drafting or delivering, and revision.
3. Develop a clear focus in assignments, organize and support ideas effectively, use vivid language, and demonstrate clarity and correctness.
4. Select, evaluate, and document sources through primary and secondary research.
5. Interpret and analyze ideas through critical reading and listening.
6. Demonstrate social responsibility through engagement with critical social issues.

Texts and Materials:
• Richard Bullock & Maureen Daly Goggin The Norton Field Guide to Writing
• Jane E. Aaron The Little Brown Compact Handbook w/exercises
• Steven A. & Susan J. Beebe A Concise Public Speaking Handbook
• MySpeechKit online access
• 2 CD’s and Flashdisk and 4x6 note cards for speeches

Grading Distribution:
Diagnostic Essay 5%
Personal Narrative Speech 10%
Personal Narrative Essay 10%
Source Evaluation 10%
Status Briefing 5%
Arguing a Position Essay 20%
Position Speech 15%
Reflection 15%
Daily 10%

You can access your grades through the online grade book in Vista. Please keep a running total of your grades for yourself in case I miscalculate or there is a technical difficulty with the grade book, and always double check to see that the grade I return to you is the same one posted online.

Grading Scale:
A = 93-100
A- = 90-92
B+ = 87-89
B = 83-86
B- = 80-82
C+ = 77-79
C = 73-76
C- = 70-72
D+ = 67-69
D = 63-66
D- = 60-62
F = below 60

Midterm Grades:
Midterm grades of satisfactory (S) or unsatisfactory (U) progress will be posted via Vista.

Guidelines for Assignment Submission:
All submissions are due at the beginning of the class period on the day specified on the syllabus. Late writing assignments will be docked 10% per day late. Late speeches are not accepted unless permission has been granted by instructor prior to due date. Students will not be given extra credit assignments or allowed to make up work that they have missed due to absence other than that incurred for University business. Final papers must be submitted in hard copy with all preliminary materials (including drafts, peer reviews, and self evaluations) and just final papers must be submitted electronically via .doc or .rtf attachment to All submissions must be original with sources clearly and correctly documented. Work previously submitted for other courses is not accepted. Any student who represents the work of another as his or her own is guilty of plagiarism and will be subject to the penalties outlined in The Student Handbook, including failure in the course and suspension from the University.

Since a workshop depends on your active participation, you should attend every class meeting. Students who miss more than two weeks of class (4 for TTh; 6 for MWF) will receive an FA (failure due to absences) for the course. Students who must be absent due to University business should notify the teacher early in the course. Arriving late or leaving early from a class is disruptive; three tardies/early exits will be considered the equivalent of an absence. Students who come to class unprepared may be dismissed by the teacher and such dismissal will be counted as an absence. Students are required to complete all major assignments and to attend at least two scheduled conferences with instructor to receive credit for the course.

Class Participation:
In addition to attending class, you are also expected to contribute class discussions and participate in workshop sessions with your peers. Learning is not a solitary process, but one that necessarily involves others and I thus consider class participation a very important part of achieving this class’s goals.

Inclusive Language:
Language–how it is used and what is implies–plays a crucial role in Samford University’s mission “to nurture persons.” Because verbal constructions create realities, inclusive language can uphold or affirm those whom we seek to nurture, while exclusive language can damage or defeat them. We therefore actively seek a discourse in our university community that supports the equal dignity and participation of men and women; we seek to avoid verbal constructions that diminish the equal dignity of all persons. It is an affirmative–and affirming–part of our mission to educate students, staff, and faculty in the creation of a community of equality and respect through language.

Classroom Dynamics:
Because class participation relies heavily on individuals feeling comfortable expressing their opinions, you must always show respect for the diversity of opinions expressed in this class. You must also demonstrate respect for gender, racial, class, and ethnic differences among your colleagues and instructor.

Outside of Class (Email and web page): E-mail is an official means of communication according to the Student Handbook. You are responsible for reading your Samford e-mail daily. Also, you will want to check (and refresh) our class web page daily, particularly the class schedule.

Passing Grades:
Students are required to earn a C- or better in order to receive credit for UCCA 101 and UCCA 102.

Communication Resource Center:
The Communication Resource Center is located in Brooks 222. The Center is a free service that provides help with all phases of writing and speaking. Drop in during the posted hours or call ext. 2137 to make an appointment.

Students with Disabilities:
Samford University complies with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Students with disabilities who seek accommodations must make their request through the Advisor for Students with Disabilities (726-4078, 726-2105), located in Counseling Services on the lower level of Pittman Hall. A faculty member will only grant reasonable accommodations upon notification from the Advisor for Students with Disabilities.

Quizzes/In-class Writing Assignments:
1. The selections from The Norton Field Guide to Writing and any other required readings are to serve as a catalyst for class discussion and your own essay writing.
2. Reading quizzes and/or in-class writing assignments may be given to monitor your reading and comprehension.
3. To prepare for quizzes and writing assignments, you should locate the thesis of each reading and the strongest supporting points. Annotate in your text. You can respond to the reading by answering the “Engaging with the Text” questions in the NFG, as well as any additional questions given in class.

General Instructions for Written Assignments:
1. All essays must be typed.
2. All rough drafts for peer review must be typed.
3. Use the MLA guidelines found in The Little Brown Handbook.
4. Use Times New Roman 12-point font.
5. Drafts of your essay should have your name, course & section, type of assignment, and date in the upper left-hand corner of the first page of essay. No cover sheet is required.
6. All essays should be titled.
7. Any invention work, photocopies of source materials, peer review sheets, and preliminary drafts should be included with the final hard copy in a pocket folder.
8. Submit essays on time.
9. Final drafts of essays must be submitted electronically as a .doc or .rtf attachment to before the class period the assignment is due, AS WELL AS submitted as a hard copy at the beginning of class the day it is due.

Course Assignments:
1. Diagnostic Essay on Connections topic (5%)

2. Speech #1 Personal Narrative (10%)
For this first speech, you will write a speech that conveys your literacy narrative.

3. Essay #1 Personal Narrative (10%)
You will transfer your oral speech into a written literacy narrative essay. Informal but directed, this essay includes the first person voice.

4. Essay #2 Source Evaluation & Annotated Bibliography (10%)
This assignment requires use of the third-person, objective voice and includes an annotated bibliography. Emphasis is on the distinction between primary and secondary sources and online and print sources. The Annotated Bibliography evaluates the body of research the student has found discussing the chosen topic. The Source Evaluation analyzes one of the sources from the bibliography and shows connections between it and the other sources. It discusses the research and findings but does not yet take a position on the topic.

5. Speech #2 Status Briefing (5%)
Each student will report on his or her chosen topic, the sources located and the research process.

6. Essay #3 Arguing a Position (20%)
This essay builds on the research of the previous assignment and takes a position. It combines the strengths of writing skills learned through the personal narrative assignment and at the same time incorporates objective sources. Emphasis is on textual analysis and use of logic. The highest standards of academic writing – grammatical correctness and stylistic polish – apply.

7. Speech #3 Persuasive Speech (15%)
This speech’s emphasis is on clarity, logic, and appeal. Your peer audience will respond to your speech by writing down possible objections to your position, as well as ideas which you should take into account before revising the position for the next essay.

8. Essay #4 Reflection (15%)
This assignment underscores the importance of writing as a process as you will substantially revise the third essay based on instructor and peer feedback. The revision includes a brief Reflection piece on the learning process.

9. Daily Grades – Quizzes, Activities, HW, In-class Writing, and Participation/Professionalism (10%)

Grading Rubric:
Here is the brief, general rubric for grades:
You did what the assignment asked for at a high quality level, and your work shows originality and creativity. Work in this range shows all the qualities listed below for a B, but it also demonstrates that you took extra steps to be original or creative in developing content, solving a problem, or developing a style. Since careful editing and proofreading are essential in writing, papers in the A range must be free of typos and grammatical or mechanical errors.

You did what the assignment asked of you at a high quality level. Work in this range needs revision; however it is complete in content, is organized well, and shows special attention to style.

You did what the assignment asked of you. Work in this range needs significant revision, but it is mostly complete in content and there is an attempt at organization. The style is straightforward but unremarkable.

You did what the assignment asked of you at a poor quality level. Work in this range needs significant revision. The content is often incomplete and the organization is hard to discern. Attention to style is often nonexistent or chaotic.

If your work is shoddy and does not fulfill the assignment, you will receive a failing grade.

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