Brandeis Course Prospectus

The Committee on Academic Honesty, a faculty, staff and student committee appointed by the provost in the fall of 1997, recommends the use of a course "prospectus" or an expanded syllabus in which the instructor communicates his/her expectations and commitments, including in re academic integrity, to students in the classroom. Uncertainty concerning assignments, means of evaluation, grading, availability of assistance and the particular aspects of academic integrity that relate to the course should be addressed in the syllabus to the fullest extent possible. The goal is to convey a sense of each course as a shared intellectual experience, in which all parties understand and commit themselves to fulfill certain obligations. A brief outline of one format for a course prospectus follows. 

Outline of Course Prospectus
The content of a course prospectus will vary with the nature of the course, the approach of the instructor, and other factors, but the following elements are suggested:
1. Description of course content and learning objectives.
2. Schedule of assignments and information on availability of assigned readings.
3. Homework assignments: contents, frequency, due dates, grading; or 4. Paper(s): selection of topics, length, drafts, due dates, evaluation.
5. Performance evaluation:
Examinations: dates, format;
Grading of homework assignments;
Class participation;
Paper(s).
6. Study assistance:
Office hours;
Teaching assistants: role, availability;
Availability of previous examination(s) given in the course.
7. Instructors intentions in re feedback from students during the semester.
8. Statement of instructor's expectations regarding students' attendance.
9. Statement regarding students with learning disabilities.
10. Statement of expectations in re academic integrity (which would be discussed with care at the outset of the course. Courses with a large research component could have a special session on integrity issues that students are likely to encounter in the course.)