Professor: Sophia Kartsonis
Text: We will work with various online texts. You are expected to read, note and bring in relevant print-outs.* Additionally, we will be watching many videos in here. The Voices and Visions series is invaluable for giving you a sense of the authors. Your attendance will be docked if you text, talk, sleep or use your laptop during these. (I will count you absent for any of the above.)
Attendance: So much of what we do and explain gets done in class, getting notes or trying to catch up even through the blog is not the most of what happens in here. For those reasons, attendance will be crucial. We will be reading a lot and dealing with that reading in class with writing assignments and activities.
Absences: You will be afforded two absences for reasons I will not need to know. I do not excuse any absence after that first one and if you accrue two absences (as the course is so short,) I will likely ask that you drop the course. Please don’t inform me as to the reason for your absence. What time you missed you will be expected to catch up on your own with the blog. Some things cannot be caught-up. Quizzes, class discussions, videos. Ideally, for a shot at a decent grade, you will be here every one of our too-few days.
Tardies: After two you have an absence.
Grades: You will be graded heavily on class participation and attendance: (30%) Your written work will comprise 70% of your total grade. Perfect attendance does not mean that you have that 30% guaranteed. I expect lively discussions and real engagement with the topics. I hate to resort to pop quizzes, but I have decided that we will be having quizzes many days before we begin discussion. It will be good for you to be prepared, have done the reading and to know that you will be quizzed. The blog contains any homework and updates. There are things mentioned in class that you may simply miss if you’re not here. Please be aware of that and factor it into your decision not to attend.
The written work will consist of some reading responses, in-class exercises and at least one artistic or ekphrastic interpretation of the material. Please be generous and thoughtful in your class discussions.
Cell Phones: Please turn them off. Brain surgery can wait.
Conference: I am available to conference with you at any time throughout the course. Please contact me in class or through the email address and we can set a time to meet.
Though two of my courses this semester are workshops, this final note while geared towards my literature courses, will benefit the creative writers, as well. Critical thinking, in every aspect of what we do, a reconsideration of what makes something appealing to us, or feel right and how, in a measured, thoughtful way, to make our arguments more balanced, based on reason and not merely opinion or the inheritance of opinion. Literature, quite literally, shows us its “politics” through character development, clarity of thought, eloquence, tone, theme and the whole writers’ toolbox with which you will become acquainted. I would like our class room to be the place where these stories and poems are used to learn about how good writing operates, but too, to suggest certain social and political themes. To do this well, we must be able to discuss many complicated and incendiary topics freely. To do that, we must agree to a considered and considerate delivery of ideas and the ability to separate the personal from the social, theoretical and political in the way we address our peers during these discussions.
If you have a documented disability as described by the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (P.L. 933-112 Section
504) and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), you may be able to receive accommodations to assist in
programmatic and physical accessibility. We recommend that you contact Disability Services at the One
Stop Student Services in the Loann Crane Center. Disability Services can assist you and the instructor in
formulating a reasonable accommodation plan and provide support in developing appropriate
accommodations for your disability. Course requirements will not be waived, but accommodations may
be made to assist you to meet the requirements. Technical support may also be available.
The One Stop Student Services officer designated as the Disabilities Advisor can help faculty with ways to make
accommodations for affected students, supply information about other services at the college, or make referrals.
The Disabilities Advisor can explain in detail faculty responsibilities and the college’s policies regarding
disabilities and special learning needs.
The Learning Center, located on the first floor lower level of the Loann Crane Center, provides students with peer
tutors, special computer-aided study tools, and access to assistance with their study skills. For more information,
contact the One Stop Student Services.