Consulting Guides

Classroom Asssessment Techniques

Effective assessment

Reporting Observations

Reviewing the Use of Small Groups

Small Group Instructional Diagnosis


Using Student Ratings to Evaluate Teaching

Teaching Guides

Using small groups effectively

Using Classroom Assessment Techniques

Reflecting on your teaching

Team Learning

Creating a Student Rating Instrument

Myths about Student Ratings


Advanced Syllabi


Useful Links




Peer Consulting:

Navigating the (sometimes) rocky shores

of teaching and consulting

Creating an effective syllabus

A good syllabus should include the following elements:

  1. Course Information
    1. Title, Number, Section, Time, Meeting Place
    2. Any prerequisites?
    3. If general education course, abe sure gen ed requirements are met
  2. Instructor Information
    1. Name
    2. Office location, your availability schedule
    3. Contact information: office phone, emails, webpage address
  3. Goal of the Course
    1. Student Learning Objectives
  4. Course Materials
    1. Textbooks
    2. Special Instructions/Materials (if applicable)
    3. Optional Materials (if applicable)
  5. Course Policies
    1. University Policies
      1. Plagiarism
    2. Attendance
    3. Grading Policies
    4. Make-up work
    5. Late policy
    6. Participation (if applicable)
    7. Statement regarding using student work or evaluationss for course portfolios
  6. Course Schedule/Topical Outline
    1. Exam dates
    2. Final exam
    3. Due dates for projects
    4. Days class meets (and holidays etc. when it does not)
  7. Major assignments
  8. Campus Resources (i.e.)
    1. Writing Center
    2. Services for Students with Disabilities
    3. Center for Academic Support and Advancement
    4. Helmke Library


A well made syllabus will be appropriate to your specific class and teaching style.  As such, you may opt to leave some of these elements out of your syllabus, or you might want to add things not listed above. Either way, you should be able to defend your decision to include or exclude items from your syllabus based upon what tone you are trying to set for the classroom environment. You should also consider how you will get students to read the syllabus. For further information regarding effective syllabi and/or integrating diversity into your syllabus, see below.

Going Beyond the Basic Syllabus

How to create a better syllabus

Illinois State University’s Center for the Advancement of Teaching

Checklist of common syllabi elements

University of Pittsburgh Syllabus webpage

This site includes a list of basic components of the syllabus as well as a model syllabus and links to three other sites about syllabi.

Michael Woolcock's Constructing a Syllabus

This is a full length article which includes:

The Case for the Sophisticated Course Syllabi by Michael Strada

Michael Strada is a professor at West Virginia. This article talks about the importance of a strong syllabus, its important elements and its heuristic benefits.

University of Minnesota's syllabus tutorial

This website offers a tutorial for creating an effective syllabus with the following components:

Some exemplary syllabi online

Introductory Philosophy by Charles Keyes at Duquesne University

U.S. Diplomatic History by Dr. Bolt at University of Richmond

Dr. Michael Strada's exemplary syllabi list

Diversity Related Syllabi Resources

Diversity Related Syllabi

A database of diversity related syllabi from the University of Maryland and other places.

Diversity Syllabi Database

The Diversity Syllabi database is a resource for journalism educators to use in creating and/or improving diversity courses at the university level.