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Instructor: Dr. Lyn Neylon

Office: B-355 # 619-660-4241

Office hours: Posted on door

MANDATORY ORIENTATION: 8/21 rm B-360 11am-12:50pm

Course Mgmt System: Blackboard - you cannot log into Blackboard until AFTER
you attend the mandatory orientation.

Perquisite: English 120 or equivalent

Two Texts:

Lives Through Literature: 3rd Edition by Helane Keating and Walter Leavey

**Book not sold in bookstore - you can find it on and other sources; however, I have all readings posted online, so you may choose to skip purchasing this text and use the online links.

Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre
Book sold in bookstore but you may find cheaper versions at the used bookstore, library or online.

E-mail: *Note: Email is only to be used for personal or private communications with the instructor. All course questions should be posted on Blackboard in the Discussion section.


He who would understand the real spirit of literature should not select authors of any one period alone, but rather trace the little rill as it courses along down the ages broadening and deepening into the great ocean of thought. -Garfield.

Welcome to Introduction to Literature. The goal of this class is to expose you to a variety of literatures from past to present - from poetry to drama. You will learn how to analyze what you read and develop vocabulary to discuss literature. Literature is a key to the human experience as seen through the ages. Hopefully, you will leave this course with a better understanding of yourself and others.

This class requires your involvement in reading, writing and communicating your ideas. The class is interactive, and your opinions are IMPORTANT! Your participation in discussions will keep the class interesting for everyone.

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What does participation mean in an on-line course? Participation means that you will read assignments listed in the syllabus, write journals about them, and be prepared to discuss what you read in on-line discussions. Participation means you will have to log into Blackboard 3 times a week to make attendance requirements, to read announcements from the instructor, to answer questions, and to discuss readings with your fellow students.

You all begin with 40 class participation/attendance points. Every week you miss logging in, you will lose 5 points per day missed! If your points reach ZERO you will be dropped from the class!

An on-campus class requires 3 hours in the classroom plus 3-9 hours of homework every week [6-12 hours total]. DO NOT expect that you will spend less time fulfilling the requirements of this course. You will need to spend 6-12 hours every week to read the assignments, write your journals, work in on-line discussion groups, take quizzes, and do your final project.

The bonus is that you can do this work at home in the early morning in your pajamas or late at night if you wish. However, do not fail yourself by believing that this course will be easier than the on campus class. It requires the SAME amount of time and effort. You just get to stay home rather than driving to campus.

Please note: You will have 24 hour access to Blackboard and the course site; however, you will not have 24 hour access to me as this is one of many classes that I am teaching this semester. I have hours that I will be in my office and available on-line and by telephone that I will announce on the first day of class. I also check Blackboard regularly to answer questions; however, I DO NOT check Blackboard on the weekends or after 5:00 pm during the weekdays.

If you have a question, please post it to the question board. One of the other students may be able to answer your question for you or I will during the normal work week.


Reading Journal: 60 pts cr/ncr

You must complete a minimum of 12 complete journals to receive credit. If you do not complete the minimum amount of journals you will receive ZERO points! You must submit your reading journal by Monday, 10:00 am Pacific Standard time to the Blackboard site to receive credit the week the journal is due. Late journals will not be accepted.

This journal is designed to help you remember what you read, participate in class discussions, write your Literary Analysis Paper, and pass the reading tests. The journal is a place for you to record your ideas and feelings about what you read, to write questions when you run across things you don’t understand, and to answer those questions when you find answers.

You should write about each of your readings for the week. For example, if you read 3 poems and two short stories in a week, you should submit an individual entry for each piece you read.

A journal entry should contain 5 items about each piece of literature: 1] Name and author of piece 2] A brief synopsis of what the piece was about 3] Any lines or phrases that have particular significance 4] A short explanation why you liked/disliked the piece 5] Any questions you have about the piece. Each weekly journal submission should be 3-5 typed pages total for all readings together. 3 pages is the minimum length to receive credit. [click here for a sample journal]

On-line Discussions 120 Points A-F

You must complete twelve on-line discussions to get full credit. Each discussion is worth 10 points [5 points to post your answers and 5 points to read and respond to your group members’ answers]. The questions are designed to help us better understand the literature we read. The questions are also the basis for the reading quizzes and exams.

Here’s how it works. Each Monday, a set of discussion questions will be sent to each member in your group. Each group member will answer and post his/her question set to the Blackboard group discussion board by Wednesday 10:00 am Pacific Standard time that same week. [the posting of well thought out answers gets you 5 of 10 discussion points] Late postings will not receive credit.

Because each group member receives different questions, you will need to read your group members’ answers and make comments on them to ensure you all agree on the answers. That way, each of you has the highest chance of understanding the literature and of getting the right answer for quizzes and exams. Each group member must post his/her responses to the Blackboard group discussion board by Friday 10:00 am Pacific Standard time that same week. [the posting of thoughtful responses gets you the other 5 of 10 discussion points] Late postings will not receive credit.

By the following Monday, I will post a message to the announcements board giving you a web address that contains additional information about the pieces you and your group have been working on. This allows you to check how well you and your group are doing in analyzing the literature. After you view the information, feel free to ask questions if there are things you still don’t understand.

Reading Quizzes 60 Points A-F

These tests are on-line multiple choice quizzes that are designed to see how well you read and understood the literature discussed in class. You may take each quiz two times. The scores will be averaged. You may take these quizzes anytime up to the cut-off date.
On-line Quiz number one 30 pts – available week five see class schedule 
On-line Quiz number two 30 pts – available week thirteen see class schedule

Mid-Term and Final Exams 80 Points A-F

The exams are partly multiple choice and include a short essay question. These exams are designed to see how well you read and understood the literature discussed in class. YOU CAN ONLY TAKE THESE TESTS ONCE!

Midterm – available week NINE 40 points - see class schedule 
Final Date – available week SEVENTEEN 40 points - see class schedule

Play Attendance 30 Points A-F

Students will attend a play performance and turn in synopsis sheet while MIDTERM is available [see above]. The goal is to have students experience a live performance. Plays are meant to be seen and heard rather than simply read in a book. You will be given a detailed handout as to how to write the synopsis sheet. You must turn in A SCANNED COPY OF your play ticket stub with your synopsis sheet to get credit! [click here for more information]

Literary Analysis Paper 60 Points A-F

While Final Exam is available [see above], a 5-7 page double spaced typed analysis comparing and contrasting two readings will be due. You will be given a detailed handout as to how to structure and write your literary analysis paper.[click here for more information]

Class Participation 40 Points A-F

Much of the class is based on student on-line discussion of readings. You will be working in groups to answer questions about the readings. For this reason, your on-line attendance is very important. You all begin with 40 points! To maintain your points, you must log onto WebCT three times a week. Each time you miss logging in, I will subtract 5 points per day missed from your participation score. Once you reach ZERO points, you will be dropped from the class!

Orientation Assignments 20 points A-F

Due 11:55 pm on Sunday PST after On Campus Orientation

There are 4 specific activities you must complete correctly to get your points.

Journal #0 = 5 points / Discussion Questions #0 = 5 points / Responding to group #0 = 5 points / Quiz #0 = 5 points

[click here to go to the orientation page]

Course Grading Policy

A = 423-470 Excellent 
B = 376-422 Superior
C = 329-375 Good 
D = 282-328 Poor 
F = 0-281 No Pass

This course adheres to the policies outlined in the Cuyamaca College Catalog. For further information, see Academic Policies stated in the catalogue.

**NOTE: For help with writing your assignments, I suggest going to the Writing Center located on the first floor of the Communication Arts Bldg. You can sign up for an assisted tutoring course for NO CHARGE and get assistance writing your essays!

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Last Updated: 08/06/2015
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