Navigating the (sometimes) rocky shores
of teaching and consulting
Going Beyond the Basic Syllabus
A syllabus can become much more than a list of expectations and due dates. If you wish to consider moving your syllabus beyond the basics here are some ideas:
- Syllabus as a contract - this type of syllabus becomes a learning contract signed by both the instructor and the students. It may contain expectations about behavior, achievement etc.
- Syllabus as a joint construction - students, especially upper level students, have some ideas about what they want/need to learn and about how they learn best, consider allowing students to have a voice in some or all aspects of the course (with your guidance, of course). This may range from having students choose between particular activities; allowing students to help organize the due dates for the course, or allowing them to help find and/or choose reading selections.
- Syllabus as a living document - syullabi do not need to be "written in stone"; syllabi on the web can be living documents which allow you (and your students) to add richness and complexity as the semester continues.