grades & requirements
papers & projects
participation & attendance policies
student expectations of the professor


Public Enemy

Grading Scale: 90-100 A; 80-89 B; 70-79 C; 65-60 D; 59 and below F

Grade Distribution:
WEEKLY Reading Checks 20%
ONE Forum 20%
TWO Papers 40%
Participation 10%
Take-Home Final Exam 20%

Reading Checks
Expect reading checks of material read outside class. They are brief and to the point. These will be at the beginning of class, and cannot be made up.

Forum for CASE STUDIES (Oral Presentation)
Each student is required to participate in one forum which will discuss one of the CASE STUDIES of the course. The dates of the forums are already in the course calendar. A sign-up sheet will be circulated on the first day of class. You should begin to research and prepare your case study as soon as the semester begins, so that on the day of your presentation you:

(1) Turn in a written formal essay (5 pg.) and
(2) present a 5-10 minute oral presentation to the class based on your research of the issue. Be sure to use visual aids and/or handouts as well as to prepare with notecards. Don't try to "wing it." Come prepared so that you are the "expert" teaching the class about this topic. To help you with the case study, I will give each of you a guide to beginning your specific topic, including preliminary research on reserve (under GUNKEL) in the Columbia Library.

There are two essays throughout the semester.

    1. One of them should be five pages long, and it is a CULTURAL STUDIES analysis of the topic you've chosen for your case study. This critical paper is due on the day of your presentation. It should use research and your own observation/interpretation of the topic. Please see the Case Study Guide for your unit to begin the project research.

    2. The other essay is shorter--two to three pages long--and consists of an analytical report on field work. All Students will sign up for Museum or Nature fieldwork. In weeks 3 and 4, half of the class will present a 3-5 minute report on their analysis and turn in the paper at class. The paper should report observations and interpretation of the space in question.

    • All papers must be typed double spaced, with margins of one inch on each side of the page and in a font no larger than 12.
    • Handwritten papers will not be accepted.
    • 10 points will automatically be subtracted from any essays handed in late.
    • If your essay grade is 69 (D+) or less, you may do a revision of the paper to improve your grade (no more than 15 points from you original grade).
    • Note: Clear and coherent writing will be an important factor in your success in this class. I urge you to visit Columbia College's Writing Center and make use of their tutors before you hand in written work. I will also be more than happy to look at rough drafts during my office hours and via email.

Final Exam (Take-Home)
The final exam questions will be provided one week before the due date for the exam. The final is due on the last meeting of the class. NO LATE EXAMS WILL BE ACCEPTED.

Your participation is an essential component of this course. This course is designed as a seminar, in which the class is lead by a discussion and not by a lecture. Everyone is expected to engage in class discussions. Your participation grade is indeed a very subjective grade, and it is my opportunity to evaluate you as a student. Participation does not necessarily mean answering every single question, but rather coming to class, being alert and paying attention, not falling asleep during class, actively participating in group activities, etc. Participation is above all a willingness to listen respectfully, to learn, to question yourself and others.


It is extremely important that you come to class. You are allowed two unexcused absences during the semester. After that, you WILL jeopardize the completion of this course (that means that you could fail the class). You are responsible for the material covered in each class you were absent. Absence is not a legitimate excuse for coming unprepared to class or for not turning an assignment in on time.

Late arrivals, early departures: every two instances that you either arrive FIFTEEN minutes late or more, or leave FIFTEEN minutes or more before class ends, count as one absence.

Please review the Academic Integrity Policies, which can be found on the Columbia College Student Handbook. It is my policy to fail a student from the entire course if s/he has plagiarized in any assignment of this class.

What to expect from the Professor   

  • The professor will not insult your intelligence by expecting less from you than college-level work.
  • The professor will provide suggestions, feedback, and critical evaluation concerning all aspects of the learning process both in and outside of class.
  • The professor will provide feedback, and will evaluate student work fairly, honestly, and constructively.
  • The professor will challenge you to think and ask Why?
  • The Professor will respect all students by discussing and evaluating ideas and not personalities--and will expect no less from the members of the class.
  • The professor will strive to maintain a bias-free classroom that judges the merit of ideas not individuals. She will expect that all members of the class respond to each other respectfully. Students who do not conduct their intellectual work respectfully will be asked to leave the class.
  • The Professor will bring not only her expertise but also her enthusiasm for learning to our classroom environment.