Policies, expectations

Academic integrity

The university’s official position: Eastern Oregon University places a high value upon the integrity of its student scholars. Any student found guilty of academic misconduct (including, but not limited to, cheating, plagiarism, or theft of an examination or supplies) may be subject to having his or her grade reduced in the course in question, being placed on probation or suspended from the university, or being expelled from the university–or a combination of these. (see section II of the 2002-03 Student Handbook, p. 32ff, and p. 41 ff; also this page for examples, more guidance at Purdue’s Online Writing Lab (here’s EOU’s writing tutor page).

My interpretation: Plagiarism is taking credit for work, ideas, papers, which are not yours. Universities make lots of literature available for a nominal fee, the bargain being that if you use the ideas of others, you’ll credit them. So it isn’t just wholesale theft, but as the above says, deception, misrepresentation, etc. Be sure you’re familiar with what plagiarism is, and how to avoid it. If you’re caught plagiarizing, you’ll receive an ‘F’ on the assignment and possibly for the course. Doing your own work turns out to be more rewarding in the long term.

In addition, if I come to learn a student is letting someone else do his/her work, I will report it to the offices of the Dean and Provost, you will receive an ‘F’ for the class, and you may find yourself expelled from the University.

Due dates and late assignments

Assignments are expected on the day they’re due. Late assignments will be assessed a penalty (one letter grade for each day, increasing with lateness). Please turn assignments in directly, through the link in Canvas. I can’t open .wps or .pages files (save them as .rtf, or .doc, .docx, or .odt if you’re using Open Office). Also, paste the file into the empty field in Canvas to ensure I receive something, in case your file attachment doesn’t open. If you’re not sure how to do this, try it, and let me know. If you have extenuating circumstances for being late with an assignment, I’m always willing to listen, but in fairness to others who’ve managed to get them in on time, it’ll have to be compelling. If you are entitled to accommodations from the Disabilities Office, they will notify me.


I will justify my discussion forums, online lecture and reading material, assignments, etc., by showing their relevance to the overall course objectives. I will provide a friendly environment for discussion of ideas, try to make you think, impart personal experiences relevant to course material, and be generally accessible, approachable, and clear and precise about course expectations. With respect to coverage of content, I tend to emphasize depth over breadth—I would rather cover less points thoroughly, at a reasonable and engaging pace, than pledge strict allegiance to a course schedule.

In turn I expect students will do their own work, use or develop critical thinking skills and be able to express them online, let me know when unclear or in disagreement on a concept, either exhibit college-level writing skills or seek help to improve them. I’ll look for progress in developing abstract thinking skills and students’ abilities to focus on  the “big picture”—key  concepts delivered in class, their relevance to course material,  the real world, etc. Discussion forums will focus on ideas—we can debate people’s ideas in a respectful way, but personal attacks on people will not be tolerated. You’re expected to show respect to everyone in the class. Some would say a loss of civility is a serious social problem affecting American society. In our class we will make every effort to buck that trend.

Students with disabilities

Any student requiring assistance or accommodation from me in performing course-related work should make his/her needs known to me in a timely manner. If you have a documented disability or suspect that you have a learning problem, you are entitled to reasonable and appropriate accommodations. But you must work with the Disabilities Services Office (dsabsvc@eou.edu). The office is located in Loso Hall 234 (phone 962-3235 or 962-3081).

Drop Policy

A student may drop from a course for any reason with no record on the student’s transcript before the end of the 4th week of the term. Thereafter, a student must withdraw from the course. A student may withdraw from the 5th week of the term through the 7th week with a grade of “W” indicated on the transcript.

No withdrawals will be issued after the 7th week of the term. Instructors will issue a letter grade (A-F, or I) for all students enrolled after the 7th week. A student making adequate academic progress during the term and needing to withdraw after the 7th week may request an incomplete from the instructor.


Unless I’ve made a math error, all grades are final. If you need the grade, simply do the work. It’s unfair to others to do otherwise. So being a few points shy of the grade you want is something you’ll want to address during the course, not after you see your grade in Mountie Hub (Webster).