A written syllabus (paper or electronic) must be distributed to students in each course on or before the first class and remain available to students electronically until the end of the semester.
If faculty need to modify the syllabus to respond to class needs, changes must be distributed to students in a timely manner through a tangible means of communication (e.g., a handout or electronic communication).
Students are responsible for knowing the information provided on a syllabus. In essence, it is a contract between the instructor and the student.
Elements of a Syllabus
- Course content and expectations (e.g., class attendance)
- Required course materials
- Contact information for all course instructors
- Course policy on examinations
- Details on the Basis for Grades including a breakdown by assessment type and percentage
- Instructor's course policy for academic integrity
- Information on procedures related to academic adjustments identified by Student Disability Resources
Using Syllabi for Course Selection
As students select courses for upcoming semesters, course syllabi can serve as guides to help them make informed decisions. Some colleges and departments maintain copies of syllabi online so students can use them to learn about the courses they offer. For example, College of Health and Human Development syllabi, Math Department syllabi, and Statistics Department syllabi are available online. To learn where you can access syllabi, contact the instructor or the department offering the course.
Evaluate courses and semester plans using the syllabus checklist.
The syllabus checklist is designed to help students evaluate courses and determine if their semester plan is realistic. In addition to assessing each course, students are encouraged to record all course assignments in an academic planner to evaluate their semester work load. If students are concerned the semester plan is not realistic, they should consult with an academic adviser to consider alternatives.
Last Update: October 2016