Introduction to the Study of Religion





My Attendance Policy: Attendance is required.  Without regular attendance, students do not tend to do well in the class.  I allow two free days.  As a courtesy, please let me know when you will be taking a free day.  There is no need to say why.  After the two free days, each undocumented absence results in a 20 point reduction from the final grade tally.  More than three undocumented absences is grounds for withdrawal from the class.  In this case, if the deadline for withdrawal has passed, the student will receive an F for the course. 

Documenting an absence: A note from a doctor, dentist, coach, or funeral director -- with contact information -- is acceptable documentation.  The student must present the note on the day that he or she returns to class, otherwise the absence will be counted as undocumented.  Without such a note, or in the case of a late note, the absence will not be counted as documented. 

Please note that a phone call or email message saying that you are ill is not sufficient, nor is a note from the health center confirming an appointment.  The note must say that you were advised not to attend class for reasons of illness.


Being Late to Class: Late arrival in class is noted.  Three late arrivals count as an undocumented absence and so result in a 20 point reduction.  More than three is grounds for removal from the class.


My Office Hours:  My office number and hours are listed above.  Please make an appointment if you can, but feel free to drop by with your concerns, ideas, questions, etc.  I will always make time if possible.  We can also communicate by email if need be, but in-person is always best.

Online Syllabus: The online syllabus can be accessed through the Blackboard course page but I recommend that you bookmark it so as to bypass BB when it goes down.  I reserve the right to alter the assignment schedule as seems appropriate or necessary; but I will not change the grading policies.



Email Communications: Students are responsible for checking the online syllabus and their email every day. I will announce any and all changes via email -- e.g., a changed deadline or altered reading assignment.


Emailed Assignments: I do not accept them unless you clear it with me in advance and only under unusual circumstances.  While I appreciate that print costs are considerable, I consider them a legitimate part of college expenses.  Running out of pay for print is not a valid reason for submitting an assignment by email.


Computer Failure: This is not a valid excuse for a late assignment.  Be sure to back up.  If you have a broken or unreliable computer, use the computers at the college computer labs.

Academic dishonesty in any form -- including plagiarism of self or others, falsified documentation of a doctor’s note, etc. -- will not be tolerated.  Cheating of any kind results, without exception, in an “F” for the course without the option of withdrawal.

Food in class:
Drinks and snacks of the very quiet variety are allowed in class (e.g., poi, rasgula, duck pate), nothing else.

Use of cell phones for any purpose is not allowed in the classroom (so please turn them off).  If a student is seen using one, s/he will be asked to leave the class and will receive an undoc absence for that day.  If it then happens again, s/he will need to withdraw from the class.

Use of computers or readers in class is not permitted unless the student has documented special needs that require the use of one.