Course Requirements and Policies

Course Requirements:

Readings: I expect you to come to our meetings having finished all assigned reading carefully and thoughtfully. In order to participate in class you will need to have the reading with you, either in hard copy or electronic form. Failure to complete the day’s reading and to bring it to class may result in your being counted absent for that day. The readings are as vital to the class as the labs, and will be the basis of class discussions.

 Reading Quizzes: You will have one reading quiz per unit. These quizzes are designed to help us both see how well you understand the material.

In-Class Participation: Participation in each section meeting is mandatory. You are expected to have thoroughly read and considered the articles and projects assigned and should come to class prepared with something you’d like to discuss. I expect that you will participate regularly in our class discussions and labs. To receive a high grade in participation, you should both make meaningful and insightful comments and actively listen to your classmates in order to bring others into the conversation. Learn from your classmates and let them learn from you. During lab days, you should read the directions for the tools in advance and work with your groupmates to produce a completed project.

Labs and Unit Projects: Every unit contains a lab day where you get hands-on experience with the tools we’ve been discussing by building a project. See syllabus for due dates.

Online Participation: Because the digital humanities community has an active online presence, you are expected to create twitter accounts and to post at least 10 tweets throughout the semester. These tweets must be relevant to the course materials, and you should use the hashtag #DHM293. You can tweet about DH projects, methodologies, or tools, and ask questions of me, your classmates, or people in the larger DH twitter community.

Online Assignments and Blogging:

Since this is a digital humanities and a hybrid class, you will have nine online assignments. Some assignments will involve writing blog posts that are a minimum of 300 words each. These blog posts should function as mini-essays, with correct grammar, spelling, and a central argument supported by specific evidence. Other assignments will involve creating small digital humanities projects and submitting links to them or embedding them in a blog post. The syllabus and online assignments tab on the website provide due dates and full instructions for each assignment. I will evaluate each entry on a scale of 0-4 (see grading rubric online for more details:

All online assignments must be submitted on time in order to receive full credit. The assignment grade will be lowered by half a number for every 24 hours it is late.

Presentations: In small groups, you will give two presentations: one on a DH project (either 9/17 or 11/5), and one on your final project (12/14). These presentations should be practiced, focused, within the time limit, and should contain specific examples, demos, and/or images. Every group member should speak during the presentation. The website contains assignment sheets and grading rubrics for the presentations.

Final Project: In small groups, you will make a final project that uses at least one of the tools or methodologies you’ve learned about in class. Each group will present their project to the class during our final exam period (12/14 from 12:30-2:30pm) and submit a short, thesis-driven paper (3-4 pages) explaining the purpose of the project, its significance, and each member’s role in the project.

Troubleshooting: If you run into problems with the technology for an assignment, then send me an email with the following information:

1. The web browser you’re using.
2. The name of the tool that is acting up.
3. A detailed description of the problem (including which step of the instructions led to the problem).
4. The full error message.
5. A screenshot of the screen and error message.

NOTE: If you send me troubleshooting emails only a few hours before the assignment is due, be forewarned that I may not be able to respond in time to help.

Course Policies:

Attendance: I expect you to attend every class. However, on occasion, extenuating circumstances will require a person to miss a class. Therefore, each student may miss up to three classes without penalty (the equivalent of 1.5 weeks of classes). Each subsequent absence will result in a loss of one third of your final letter grade (i.e. an “A-” becomes a “B” if you miss four classes). Official university excuses are exceptions to this rule, but they must be cleared with me in advance.

More than eight absences provide grounds for failure of the course. If attendance will be a problem due to unusual circumstances, please discuss it with me as soon as possible.

Tardiness: Arriving more than 10 minutes late to class will count as 1⁄2 of an absence. As with absences, lateness counts against your final grade, not your participation grade.

 Late Work: I grant extensions only in extraordinary circumstances, and only to those who give me their reasons at least 24 hours in advance. Otherwise, the assignment grade drops by a full number for every 24-hour period it is late (so a blog post turned in 4 days late will automatically receive a 0).

Academic Integrity (from

Students are expected to maintain the highest standards of honesty in their college work. Cheating, forgery, and plagiarism are serious offenses, and students found guilty of any form of academic dishonesty are subject to disciplinary action.

Cheating is defined as giving or obtaining information by improper means in meeting any academic requirements. The use for academic credit of the same work in more than one course without knowledge or consent of the instructor(s) is a form of cheating and is a serious violation of academic integrity.

Forgery is defined as the alteration of college forms, documents, or records, or the signing of such forms or documents by someone other than the proper designee.

Plagiarism is the representation, intentional or unintentional, of someone else’s words or ideas as one’s own. Since words in print are the property of an author or publisher, plagiarizing is a form of larceny punishable by fine. When using another person’s words in a paper, students must place them within quotation marks or clearly set them off in the text and give them appropriate footnoting. When students use only the ideas and change the words, they must clearly identify the source of the ideas. Plagiarism, whether intentional or unintentional, is a violation of the property rights of the author plagiarized and of the implied assurance by the students when they hand in work that the work is their own.

Faculty members are responsible for making the initial determination of the academic penalty to be imposed in cases of cheating, plagiarism, or forgery and for informing the department chair, the dean and the student in writing of the alleged violation and proposed penalty. The academic penalty may range, for instance, from a reprimand accompanied by guidance about how to avoid plagiarism in the future to failure for the course. The academic dean may request that the Dean of Students send a follow-up letter to the student indicating that they have also been notified of the academic integrity violation and that subsequent violations will lead to judicial action.

If a student has any question about what constitutes a violation of academic integrity, it is that student’s responsibility to clarify the matter by conferring with the instructor and to seek out other resources available on the campus. The link regarding plagiarism on the Sojourner Truth Library’s website is an excellent beginning:

Plagiarism will result in a failing grade for the assignment and being reported as described above, and it may also lead to a failing grade for the course.

Classroom and Online Courtesy: Please observe these basic guidelines of classroom decorum:

  • Silence your phone during class.
  • Refrain from activity that will distract you and others during class, including (but not limited to) texting, e-mailing, web surfing, talking to others instead of listening, not removing headphones, and completing work unrelated to our class.
  • Except in the case of an emergency, please remain in the classroom during class so that you can give me and your classmates your full attention.
  • All discussions, both online and in person, should be respectful and polite:  feel free to disagree with your classmates, but do so courteously with insulting them or their work.

Failure to adhere to these guidelines will count as half an absence.

Completion of the Course: You must complete all coursework in order to receive a passing grade. Also, it is the College’s policy on incomplete grades ( that I may not grant an incomplete unless you have completed 75% of the work for the class. The last day to withdraw from the class without receiving a penalty grade is March 31st.

 Office Hours: You are welcome to drop by unannounced during any of my office hours to discuss anything related to our class. If you cannot make it to my regular office hours, let me know and we can set up an alternate appointment. E-mail is the best way to reach me.

Students with Disabilities: Any student who will need classroom and/or testing accommodations based on the impact of a disability should contact the Disability Resource Center, Student Union, Room 210, 845-257-3020. The DRC will provide an Accommodation Memo for your instructors verifying the need for accommodations. Students are encouraged to request accommodations as close to the beginning of the semester as possible.

E-mail: Class announcements will be sent regularly by e-mail to students’ SUNY New Paltz accounts. In the event of inclement weather, I will use e-mail in order to communicate with you about any cancellations.

 Format of Written Work: All written work done outside of class should be typed and should conform to the most current MLA guidelines (

Student Evaluation of Instruction: You are responsible for completing the online Student Evaluation of Instruction (SEI) for this course. I value your feedback and use it to improve my teaching. Please make sure to complete the form online.

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