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Grade Smarter

A syllabus template for next term

We found syllabus recommendations from several major universities and publications.  Here’s our summarized syllabus template from the best resources we found on the web.

Syllabus for large lecture

Basic Information for the course

  • Course name and number
  • Meeting times and location
  • Credit hours
  • Semester / quarter

Instructor information

  • Instructor name
  • Instructor department affiliation

How to contact and communicate with the instructor and TAs

  • Email address
  • Office hours
  • Phone number
  • Contact preference
  • Virtual office hours?

Prerequisites

  • Prior course requirements
  • Knowledge and skills the students should already have

Course texts and materials

  • Textbooks with editions and volume information
  • Technology
  • Lab materials
  • Costs

Course description

  • Why should students take the course?
  • How is the course relevant to them?
  • How does the course fit into the broader department curriculum?

Course Goals

  • What will students know or be able to do better after completing this course?
  • What skills or competencies do you want to develop in your students?

Classroom procedures

Participation

Grading policy

  • How will you weight scores?
  • What are the percentages for each grade level?
  • Will you use be grading on the curve?

Assignments

  • List of assignment, quizzes, papers, and exams
  • Is there a final exam?

Couse schedule

  • Course calendar
  • Due dates for assigned readings, projects, quizzes, papers, and exams

Couse policies

  • Policies the instructor expects the students to meet
  • University academic policy
  • University inclusiveness policy

Once you’ve wrapped up the term, you should reflect on what worked and what didn’t in your course and revise your syllabus accordingly. For example, were students uninvolved during lectures or missing class altogether, perhaps you should consider classroom participation, quizzes, or polls. 

Bradley, Bryan. “Creating a Syllabus.” Creating a Syllabus | CENTER FOR TEACHING AND LEARNING, ctl.byu.edu/creating-syllabus.

“Getting Started with Constructing a Syllabus: Center for Teaching Innovation.” Getting Started with Constructing a Syllabus | Center for Teaching Innovation, teaching.cornell.edu/resource/getting-started-constructing-syllabus.

Gannon, Kevin. “How to Create a Syllabus Advice Guide.” Chronicle.com, The Chronicle of Higher Education, 2109, www.chronicle.com/interactives/advice-syllabus.