Every professor, myself included, tells students to “Read the syllabus”. Heck, even Snoop Dogg tells you to read the syllabus.
There’s good reason to read it. It tells you how the class will run, what you’ll study, and what your responsibilities are. It tells you what to expect and how to plan your time. Unfortunately most syllabi are grey, dull, boring, and approximately as interesting to read as the terms and conditions page on your cell phone service. I want to make an effort to change that.
The thing is, few professors explain why the syllabus and the course is the way it is. Truth is, there’s often a reason why things are as they are. It’s really not all random and arbitrary, although I know it can often feel that way to a student. I’m also aware that different professors do things differently and for different reasons. Learning to navigate the differences in courses and professors is part of your learning in higher education.
So with all that in mind, I’m offering this version of the syllabus. It’s what I call the “Professor’s Cut” version. It’s like the “Director’s Cut” version of a movie or a video game where the director explains why certain shots were done the way they were. I believe if you understand where I’m coming from in the rules, etc, you’ll be able to learn better and use your time better.
What you’ll see here are direct quotes from the official syllabus in the LCC Concourse system. The entire official syllabus is quoted here in the parts that are indented and prefaced by the black side bar like this:
Principles of Economics-Macro ECON-202
01/08/2024 to 05/06/2024
Professor: Jim Luke
- Email: email@example.com
- Office: I am not on campus this semester due to disability and I no longer have an office on campus. However, I am easily available and eager to talk via telephone, online chat, Webex, or other video connections. Contact me and let’s set a time to talk. It doesn’t have to be during official office hours.
- Office Phone: 517-483-5384 Since I’m working remotely, this number is guaranteed to go to voice mail. You’re better off with my cell phone and identifying yourself as an LCC Macro student
- Cell/texting: 313-550-8884 – please let me know not only who you are, but that you’re an LCC student and you’re in my 202 class.
- Department Phone Number: 517-483-1546
NOTE: Department support staff are located in GB 1222
- Website: econproph.com(my blog) (note: these are not the sites used in this course. This is my professional site on the Web. Sites used in the course are described below in Required Materials)
Office Hours: Wednesday ONLINE, 12 noon to 1pm and other times by arrangement
I can meet online or talk by phone when it works for you– just ask me! I can talk via phone, video conference, or chat online.
I’m required to list an hour of official office hours. The reality is I’m very available and flexible -especially during this stay-at-home pandemic time. I mean, I’m an old guy with asthma, some disabilities, and some other health issues. Where else do you think I’m going to be during these Covid times? I’m most likely in my home office, researching the economics of higher ed for a book I’m writing or doomscrolling on social media while procrastinating the work I should do or otherwise driving my recently retired wife nuts. If you need help or if you’re just curious or if you just want to chat some econ or higher ed stuff, I’m available. I teach all online. So call me. Email me (that’s often best). Text me. Tell me you want to chat or ask a question or meet. Let’s find a time and do it. Remember, calling my LCC “office” number is guaranteed to go to voice mail. Better to email or text my cell and mention who you are.
The one thing I ask is that when you text me or leave a voice mail, please let me know who you are and that you’re a student in my LCC macro class. You see, that’s my cell phone and relative to you, I’m “an old”. And us “olds” get lots and lots of spam phone calls and spam texts because all kinds of scammers think it’s a great idea to scam old folks out of their money. Help me recognize that you’re somebody I really, really want to call/text back because you’re my student and not some “foreign prince” that’s trying to sell me more Medicare insurance or tell me my account at The Federal Reserve Bank is being cancelled unless I tell them my Soc Sec number (these are all real scam calls I’ve heard). Students are the good folks. Scammers, not so much.
If there are specific days-hours listed, they’re “tentative”. I just picked it more or less at random. I have no idea if that’s when most students could meet. If it changes, I’ll tell you.
My normal routine is to open this course first thing in the morning each week day and answer emails, questions in forums, do grading, and monitor what’s happening. If all’s going well and you don’t have a specific question, I’ll let you keep at it. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. But please don’t think that any silence on my part means I’m absent. I’m not. I’m just letting you all do your thing and follow the process.
This course addresses the theory of national income, employment and the price level, and government fiscal and monetary policies designed to influence aggregate economic activity. It also addresses exchange rates, international financial relationships, and economic growth. (F,Sp,Su)
Prerequisite Course: ECON 201 or concurrently
Placement Scores: Reading Level 5 and Math Level 4
Student Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:
- Calculate, explain, and evaluate measures of aggregate output, aggregate income, the price level, unemployment and the balance of payments.
- Describe the types of unemployment.
- Describe the components of aggregate demand, their relative size in the U.S. economy, and their historical volatility.
- Describe and explain the aggregate flows of an economy between households, firms, government, and rest-of-world sectors through product, resource, and financial markets.
- Describe and evaluate macroeconomic policy goals and trade-offs.
- Describe the federal budget process, surplus or deficit, and public debt, and their impact on the economy.
- Explain verbally and graphically and apply the aggregate demand and aggregate supply model.
- Explain and analyze the classical theory of macroeconomic equilibrium and the resulting implications for the role of government.
- Explain and analyze the Keynesian theory of macroeconomic equilibrium and expenditure multiplier effects and the resulting implications for the role of government.
- List and explain the tools of fiscal policy and describe and show graphically how those tools can be used to achieve macroeconomic goals.
- Define money, describe the banking system, and explain the process by which the banking system creates money.
- Describe and define the functions and policy tools of the Federal Reserve System and explain how actions of the Federal Reserve System affect money supply and interest rates.
- Describe and show graphically how actions by the Federal Reserve can be used to achieve macroeconomic goals.
- Explain and analyze the Monetarist view of policy, macroeconomic equilibrium and the resulting implications for the role of government.
- Explain and contrast the views of the effectiveness and desirability of using activist and discretionary policy to achieve macroeconomic goals.
- Describe the process by which exchange rates are determined and the macroeconomic impact of changes in exchange rates.
- Explain economic growth, how it is measured through the aggregate production function and the factors that determine growth.
Blah, blah, blah, blah. This is all required boilerplate text from the college. I don’t have any authority to change it or add to it. As one of the econ faculty I have some minor influence in changing some the wording here for all ECON 202 classes but that’s a bureaucratic process that often takes over a year. Most of this is here to communicate what the course was about to any school to whom you transfer your credits. It won’t surprise me if many of the things listed here don’t mean much to you now at the start. I hope they do once you finish. You want to know what we’re going to study this semester? Browse the textbook or the macro.econproph.net site we’re going to use.
For the really good stuff about how to conquer this course (if not the world), keep reading.
Required Online Sites
We will use two websites for this course.
All graded activity such as quizzes, your answers to worksheet questions, required discussion forums, and midterm/final exams are located in the LCC D2L website. You must login to the D2L site using your LCC user id.
“Content”, meaning the stuff you read and study like “Jim’s Guide” readings, textbook readings, tutorials, worksheet materials, and other study materials are located at macro.econproph.net (opens in new tab). Links to your textbook readings online are available from macro.econproph.net, as well as other resources about economics. There is no need to login at the macro.econproph.net. It is a permanent, public website maintained by me, your professor. An annotated copy of this syllabus is also available there where I explain the rationale behind some policies (see under the Unit 1 tab).
There are links from D2L to those readings and resources at macro.econproph.net, You can get there either by going to D2L first and finding the appropriate links under “Content” OR by just entering the macro.econproph.net URL in your web browser directly. Personally, I suggest you bookmark the macro.econproph.net site and navigate to it directly in your browser. You’ll do most of your reading and work in the macro.econproph.net site and only really need to go to D2L for quizzes and forum postings. I recommend just starting at the macro.econproph.net site, especially since it works very well on all devices including phones.
- Availability: online the Web
- Price: free
Your textbook for this class is available for free online and links to the textbook readings are included in the course online readings/website (macro.econproph.net), therefore there’s nothing you really need to do to “get the textbook”. It will be linked in the website.
If However, if you prefer to download your own PDF copy of the entire book or even order a good-old print-on-paper copy, here’s what you need to know.
Textbook: Principles of Economics 2e
- Author: Steve Greenlaw, David Shapiro, and Timothy Taylor
- Publisher: OpenStax
- Edition: Publish Date Oct 11, 2017
- ISBN: Print: ISBN-10: 1-947172-36-0 ISBN-13: 978-1-947172-36-4 Digital: ISBN-10: 1-947172-37-9 ISBN-13: 978-1-947172-37-1 iBooks: ISBN-10: 1-947172-48-4 ISBN-13: 978-1-947172-48-7
- Availability: https://openstax.org/details/books/principles-economics-2e
- Price: free for online or pdf; print available at $38 or less
For-profit publisher economics textbooks are outrageously priced. For example, a new, printed edition of the popular Krugman text is near $250. The Mankiw text is over $300. We, the economics faculty at LCC, think that’s unjustified and it represents a monopolistic abuse of students. So we choose to use an Open Educational Resource (OER), an openly licensed (Creative Commons) textbook. I do happen to know the author, Steve Greenlaw, fairly well personally. My personal assessment is that nearly all economics principles texts are pretty crappy. Maybe I’ll write a non-crappy one when I retire, we’ll see. This one is much less crappy than most. And it’s free (online or download). That’s why it’s assigned and I add a lot of my own stuff on this website. For more details about how to use this public website I’ve created for this course, see the Unit 1 Jim’s Guide.
Now just in case you haven’t fully gotten this message yet, I’ll be real clear: Not only is the textbook free, you don’t have to do anything to “get a copy”. I have put links to the online textbook chapters in my macro.econproph.net site. Just work through the units on my site and you’ll be given the links to the part of the textbook you need to read when you need to read it. EZ-PEAZY.
I’m a huge advocate of openness in education. I spend a lot of time researching it, presenting at national and international conferences about it, and writing about it on my blog and I’m working on a book about it. This site is open to all and stays open because I think I better walk my own talk.
Student Electronic Access to Grades
Students will have access to their grades through D2L in order to receive feedback on their progress in the course at any time. These grades will align with the Evaluation Criteria listed in this syllabus.
Results for graded items should be posted electronically within 48 hours after the instructor has completed the grading process for the items, and final grades for the course should be entered no later than the specified grading day.
Methods of Assessment and Learning How Well You Are Learning
Quizzes – 140 points
Quizzes are multiple-choice and true-false question tests with only one best answer for each question. Some graphs and minor calculations may be involved. After completing each of the first 14 units, students will complete a short quiz of approximately 10 questions. The last unit, unit 15, doesn’t have a quiz. Quizzes are administered online through Desire2Learn. Students will be shown their score (# correct) immediately and which questions they missed, but not correct answers. Quizzes do not have time limits. Any quiz may be re-taken, but each quiz may only be taken a maximum of two times. The highest of the two quiz submissions will be counted.
Worksheets – 70 points
There will be 7 worksheet assignments. These worksheets are assigned in various Units, but not all units will have a worksheet assignment. A worksheet consists of a table of data and/or graph about an economic situation or problem. Some initial data is provided and students are expected to calculate the remaining data. After completing the blank parts of the worksheet, you will answer a short series of questions online. The data you calculate will be needed to answer the questions. Worksheet answers may submitted as many times as the student chooses. The last submission counts. In addition, students are encouraged to collaborate and discuss the worksheet problems on the discussion forums.
Worksheets involve both the use of the macro.econproph.net open course website and the D2L site. The data, problem description, preview of the questions, and tips are on a page on the macro.econproph.net site. Once you solve that worksheet there, you submit your answers to be graded/recorded on D2L.
Midterm Tests – 40 points
A short test of 20 questions is taken at the conclusion of Units 6 and 13. These tests may only be attempted once. There is a time limit of 40 minutes for completing the test. Once a test is opened, it must be completed – it cannot be saved, closed, and re-opened later. When you open a test, be sure you have time to complete it. Some graphs and calculations may be involved – you may want to have a simple calculator and/or scratch paper available when you take the test.
Required Unit One Forum post – 5 points
In Unit one (on D2L), there is a “Who are you?” forum. You get 5 points posting and introducing yourself to the class and sharing whatever you feel comfortable with.
Required Postings to “My Connection with Macro” Journal – 35 points
There is a “forum” in D2L called the “Journal” or “Connecting to Macro”. You will need to create an initial post/thread in Unit 1. Then at 6 other different times during the course – roughly every other unit or so (more often if you wish) – you will be asked to post a reply to your original post. You get 5 points for each post. With a minimum of 7 required posts (more are welcome), there are 35 points available.
There are numerous “HELP” forums available for online help. These are entirely optional and do not count towards course grade. The HELP forums are for you to help each other or ask me for help with problems, issues, or to clarify course problems. HELP forums are very useful if you struggle with a particular worksheet.
Review Exercise – 10 points
An online exercise to help review and prepare for the final exam will be available in the last two weeks of the course. It is worth 10 points. Answers are not graded but students will receive 10 points credit for completing the exercise.
Final Examination – 100 points
The final exam will be comprehensive and will have two parts.
Part one is a multiple-choice test online in D2L during the last week. It will have 25 questions and each question counts for 2.0 points. It is not proctored.
The second part is an essay you will write and submit during the final week. The essay is worth 50 points. The “writing prompt” or question you’ll be asked to write on will be announced sometime 2-3 weeks before the essay is due.
Extra credit is not available in this course. Students’ time is better spent reworking worksheets and quizzes. It produces more points for your time investment.
Types of evaluations and related weights Type Weight Topic Notes Quizzes 35% each unit
140 points total from all graded quizzes at end of each unit; best of two attempts for each
Worksheet “quizzes” 17.5% Seven selected units
70 points total from 7 worksheets. Last submission of each worksheet counts.
Midterm Tests 10% Units 2-6 on Midterm I; Units 7-13 on Midterm II
Two 20 point MC tests. Total of 40 points
Required Forum Postings 10.0% “who are you” forum + “connecting to macro” journaling
5 points for Unit 1 “Who Are You?” forum post; and then 5 points for each post/entry and eventually a minimum of 7 posts on the “Connecting to Macro” journaling exercise/forum;
Between the two discussion/forum assignments, a total of 40 points are possible over the semester.
Final Exam Review 2.5% Final review study exercise as preparation for final.
Attempting to final review exercise as preparation for final. Full points for attempt regardless of outcome.
Final Exam (both parts together) 25% comprehensive on all topics
Includes both the multiple choice portion that serves to replace the “departmental final” during the pandemic; and the essay-based instructor portion
Course Grade % of Possible total points Minimum Points Earned 4.0 – Excellent 93 – 100% 372 3.5 —– 87 – 92% 348 3.0 – Good 81 – 86% 324 2.5 —– 76 – 80% 304 2.0 Satisfactory 71 – 75% 284 1.5 —– 66 – 70% 264 1.0 – Poor 60 – 65% 240 0.0 —— 0 – 59% 0
Most of the above, at least the details, are self-explanatory, I hope. (if not, PLEASE ASK!). What’s not obvious is why I do it this way. Put simply, I do not believe in grades. To be more specific, I think grades and grading get in the way of people learning. Students get focused on short-term regurgitation of details for some test. Students get anxious. And don’t even get me started on how imprecise and arbitrary the measurement is.
I want you to learn about economics because the more you know, the better you can navigate your life – regardless of your chosen profession. It can be interesting, but grades just get in the way. More importantly, my research on learning and pedagogy tells me that we can’t quantify and reliably measure learning. I am firmly convinced that learning, real learning – the kind of learning where you feel the lightbulb go on and go AH-HA!- cannot be quantitatively and objectively measured (there’s a very similar problem in economics: how to measure ‘value’ which we’ll see when we study “GDP”).
If I had my way, I wouldn’t have grades. But I can’t do that. The school requires that I do grades. The schools you transfer to expect that LCC professors are assigning grades. So here’s my solution. It’s a modified version of a practice called “contract grading”.
I can’t measure directly what you’ve learned. I can’t identify or measure the AH-HA! moment you’ll have. What I can do, is lay out a process – a sequence of steps and activities – that I know with high degree of confidence will lead to learning about economics. (for you budding business majors, this concept is actually the core concept behind continuous quality improvement processes and statistical process quality control). The process I’ve laid out is largely readings and doing the worksheets in a particular order, followed by periodic self-reflection. Some concepts in economics aren’t well grasped just by reading. You actually need to try to use them to analyze something. That’s why the worksheets. That’s also why the worksheets can be repeated as many times as you wish. Do it till you get it or until you’ve given up and decided the opportunity cost of seeking those last 2 points isn’t worth it.
But what about the quizzes? Isn’t that an attempt to “measure what you’ve learned”? Not really. I hope you learn a lot of things that aren’t on the quizzes. I can’t write questions for everything I hope you learn. What I’m doing with the quizzes is basically doing a sampling to see if you did the readings and thought about them. They’re also as much feedback to you as to me – and that’s why you can repeat them. The quizzes are an imperfect indicator to me (and you) of whether and how seriously you did the readings. That’s their purpose. I also provide practice quizzes that don’t count. Once you get into the course, you’ll see that practice quiz questions are similar (but not identical) to graded quiz questions. If you can do well on the practice quizzes, you’ll do well on the graded unit quizzes. And if you actually remember longer term what you did on the graded quizzes, you’ll do well on the exams.
The final exam is a bit of an experiment. We used to have a mandatory, departmental final that was proctored and no-notes. It was all multiple choice in my class. However, with the Covid pandemic we haven’t been able to proctor exams for online classes. Each instructor is on their own. I’ve opted for a split , two-part final exam: one part is involves 20 online MC questions and the other part is a self-reflective essay you’ll write. You’ll have plenty of advance notice and time for the essay topic.
That leaves us with the forums and review exercises. Writing is a way to help us think. I am not judging or grading what you write in the forums at all. I’m interested in what you’re thinking. I have tried to create forums and prompts that will help nudge your thinking while you’re doing the course. Please don’t treat this as “I just gotta say some b.s. with some buzzwords” type things. That doesn’t help you and it wastes my time reading it. Again, I’m not trying to measure what you’ve learned. I’m trying to see if you complete the process. I’m curious what you think. So write your posts and replies. You get the full points for writing – whatever you write. In forums, I’m not looking for finished product. I’m not looking for you to write the next great economics research paper. I’m looking for you to “think out loud”. The only way to “fail” the unit one forum or the journaling forum is to not write it. Period. Oh, and BTW, for the reflections “journal”, your entries don’t have to all be sentences-paragraphs, etc. If you think a video or a haiku or GIF or an image with some text explains what you’re thinking at that point, feel free to do it.
Regarding your overall grade, I can assure you this. I’ve been doing this a long time. Trust me. If you simply follow the process, do the work, and don’t procrastinate, you will succeed in this class. I cannot remember a student who failed or didn’t succeed “because they just couldn’t get it” or “because they’re not good at math” or “because they were stupid”. The only students who don’t succeed are the ones who don’t follow the process or don’t do the work, procrastinate, and try to do the whole course in 3 days. And there are very, very few of those students. I want you to succeed and I want you learn econ. Work with me and I’ll help you all I can.
EMERGENCY CLOSURE/REMOTE INSTRUCTION
Since this is an asynchronous online class that, as explained above, really only has four “hard” deadlines, this class/course isn’t really affected by “snow days” or other physical closures of the campus. If a campus closure somehow does interfere with your ability to meet one of the four “hard” deadlines, please email me and we’ll work out arrangements.
I hope this is self-explanatory. This is an online asynchronous, partly self-scheduled course. The idea of “closing” for a “snow day” isn’t real meaningful and doesn’t really change much, but I’ve got to include this here.
Faculty and Student Engagement
In this course, I will engage with you by providing grading and feedback two business days after your assignments are due, responding to your emails within two business days and through the following methods of engagement.
- Providing a regular schedule for submitting assignments.
- Posting regular course announcements.
- Utilizing technology tools, strategically and purposely, to improve the understanding of course topics (for example, presenting course materials using various techniques and approaches, including text, audio, video, or screen capture).
- Creating assignments and activities that are engaging and relate to the learning outcomes of the course.
- providing an extensive supplemental website written in casual, personal voice to explain each topic and unit in the course. These are called “Jim’s Guides” and have proven to be extremely popular with students in the past.
- responding to direct student inquiries posted on the HELP forums and via email
- providing customized tutorials on “Closer Look” pages of the supplemental website
- timely reading and, response if necessary, to students’ “Connecting with Macro” personal journals about their learning progress and reflections.
The above “policy” is a new part of the syllabus required by the school. It’s as much a communication to accreditation reviewers as it is to you. Let’s move on to the course policies I’ve created that you’re probably really interested in right now:
[more course policies]
Students are expected to be active online every week and do their best to meet the suggested schedule dates. Students who find themselves unable to do so are strongly encouraged to contact the professor so we can figure out how to get back on track.
Students who do not complete Unit 1 assignment (quiz) by the required Unit 1 deadline will be reported as not having attended and will be dropped as part of the Attendance Verification process.
Scheduling and Due Dates: Flexible Schedule
Planning and scheduling your own work is integral to learning economics. In particular it helps you experience concepts of scarcity, opportunity costs, production possibilities, and other economic principles in your own life. Therefore, I’ve designed this course to provide a significant amount of flexibility to you in scheduling your own work.
There are four “hard deadlines“, as listed below. The “hard deadlines” or “mandatory deadlines” are the only deadlines where there are required negative consequences if you don’t meet them. Typically, if you miss a “hard deadline” you either get dropped or you have missed any opportunity to complete certain assignments (Unit 1 or midterms), or both. Either way you risk not finishing the course or at least making your grade lower.
Mandatory “Hard” Deadlines:
- Last day to complete Quiz 1, (and post to the two forums). Jan 18 end of day
- Last day to complete first midterm test- Mar 8 end of day (but recommended earlier)
- Last day to complete second midterm test and Units 1-13 quizzes: Apr 23 end of day
- Last day to complete everything including the final exam: May 6 end of day.
Organization of Course and Suggested Work Schedule
The course is divided into 15 Units organized into 4 Parts according to topics. The Units of the course does not exactly follow the chapters in the textbook and not in the same sequence. For more information and details see the Lessons tab of the course and the “Jim’s Guide” for each unit on the Desire2Learn course website or at the macro.econproph.net website. Unit numbers in the course do NOT correspond directly to chapter numbers in the book.
In addition to the required “hard” deadlines listed above, a schedule of suggested completion dates for each of the 15 units plus midterms and final is provided via the link below. This suggested schedule is also available in D2L and can be bookmarked for your convenience. Suggested dates are provided as a convenience to you so you can plan and monitor your progress. If you don’t meet certain suggested dates, the only consequence is that you fall a little bit behind and will need to “pick up the pace” as you move forward. It’s important to not fall seriously behind. In my experience the single greatest cause of poor grades in this course is procrastination. On the upside, if can discipline yourself to work regularly at a nice pace and not fall seriously behind, experience indicates you are virtually guaranteed to succeed in this course. More information about scheduling and deadlines is in Unit 1 of the course, and by checking the Suggested Schedule. Plan your own pace and schedule accordingly. To help you plan your scheduling, look at the Suggested Schedule of Work Assignments (click on this link to view Schedule as a web page in a new tab or window).
Discussion and Collaboration
Students are encouraged to assist each other in learning and mastering the material, particularly when dealing with the problem worksheets. A discussion forum will be provided for this use. Collaboration, however, is only for students to help each other understand the material. Trading, sharing, or publishing of specific answers to specific quiz or exam questions is prohibited and will be considered a violation of academic integrity
I encourage discussion between students and the sharing of ideas and information. One of the best methods for learning and truly grasping economic concepts is to explain them to others. Students are welcome to assist each other in learning. However, the direct exchange of answers to questions without discussion, argument, or reasoned explanation is viewed as academic dishonesty. I reserve the right to reject the score of any assessment that I suspect may have been obtained dishonestly and not through student learning, even without proof of any dishonest actions by the student.
Note on Use of “AI” Systems such as ChatGPT, etc.: My above policy encouraging discussion and collaboration extends only to actual other human beings enrolled in the course or that otherwise might be reasonable sources of actual real human intelligence such as a tutor from the Learning Commons. Given the hype we’ve heard in the past year or so about the “wonderous” and “intelligent” AI systems that Silicon Valley has created (clue: they aren’t), I understand how it might be tempting to use such systems to formulate answers for forums (like your journal assignment) or the final exam essay portion. Don’t do it. Please. You will be wasting your time, you’ll learn nothing, and you’ll get garbage back from a stupid computer that’s wasting enormous energy and water just to have a pretend dialog with you. I’m serious. I have a much better idea. If you’re stumped or lost or even just feel hopelessly behind in the course and desperate –instead of checking with the AI things, CALL ME! Yes, me. The instructor. A real human being (I’ve got lab reports from my doctor as proof!). I can help you do the assignment AND learn something. And I like to talk about economics.
Extra credit is not available in this course. Students’ time is better spent reworking worksheets and quizzes. It produces more points for your time investment.
The “Electronic Gradebook” is actually the D2L gradebook function. Students will have access to their grades through D2L in order to receive feedback on their progress in the course at any time. These grades will align with the Evaluation Criteria listed in this syllabus.
Results for quizzes and worksheet submissions (which D2L also calls “quizzes”) are autograded when submitted. Required forum posts, which earn points just by posting, are manually entered and generally posted within 2 “school” days of posting. Final exams are graded as a batch process the day after classes end.
Students are cautioned that D2L overall percentages-converted-to-“course grades so far” may be misleading if a student is behind the suggested schedule. See the course announcement on “Calculating and estimating grades so far”
The above are my personal policies for the class. I think they’re largely self-explanatory, but if not, please ask. My reasoning for the flexibility in dates is simple. There’s a trade-off from my perspective. Putting all this flexibility in regarding dates for completing units puts students who aren’t disciplined in time management or their scheduling at risk. I know that. I try to nudge those students to learn to manage better. But I also know that setting what I consider “artificial” deadlines – things like “do unit 2 by x date or it won’t be accepted” poses a real problem for many students. You all have complicated real lives. There’s a life outside this econ class. You have families, friends, jobs, activities, and on and on. It’s tough to manage. You also have other courses that don’t have time flexibility in deadlines. Often those other courses have deadlines for good reasons: the activities in the class require all students to be reading the same thing at the same time. This course material doesn’t really demand that. So I try to provide as much flexibility as I can. I trust you.
Brown M&M Clause
It is not advised to provide me, Jim, your professor, with brown M&M’s. If you view this YouTube video you will get an idea as to why this clause is here.
This is my clause. Of course it’s silly. Just like it was silly of the band Van Halen to make a similar demand of their concert venues. But if you listen/watch the video, you’ll understand. It’s kind of like the reasoning behind my quiz questions. It’s not so much the question per se, just like it’s not so much about brown M&M’s. Instead, it’s a short-cut way to see if the reading was done. It’s also an example of more sophisticated concept from game theory economics called “signaling”. BTW, here’s the video:
For transfer information, please consult the LCC Transfer Center webpage. In addition, the Michigan Transfer Network website allows students to search how courses transfer to colleges and universities statewide.
The Michigan Transfer Agreement (MTA) simplifies the transfer of students from one Michigan institution to another. For the most current information, see the LCC General Education webpage.
Students interested in transfer should contact the Transfer Center in the Gannon Building, Room 2204, or call (517) 483-9700.
Students with disabilities who may need accommodations in this class should contact the Center for Student Access (CSA). They are located in the Gannon Building, Star Zone – Center for Student Support. You can also access the Center for Student Access website, or call (517) 483-1924. Contacting the Center early helps ensure that accommodations for you are put in place as soon as possible.
I want to make a comment or two about “disabilities”. And here, I’m not joking. I have several disabilities myself. I’m dyslexic. I’m ADHD. I was born with respiratory & immune system issues that have affected me in many ways including creating a lot of problems in K-12 for me. As an adult I developed a visual impairment called keratoconus. I call myself a part-time blind guy.
So I understand. Of course I support and will follow the school’s policy as stated in the syllabus. But I also recognize (and remember) that students often have disabilities and other challenges that don’t go through that official process and frankly, in my opinion, shouldn’t have to. My point is, again, trust me. Talk to me. If there’s something I can do to help you learn with less struggle or anxiety, let me know. I’m interested.
And, finally, I’d add that those last few lines apply in general, too. If life is getting in your way, if you’re facing what educators now call “food insecurity” or other issues (back in my day when I was walking up hill both directions to school we just called it hungry, 😉 ) or any other life challenges, you can talk to me. I don’t promise miracles but I’ll try.
Student Code of Conduct and General Rules and Guidelines
The College recognizes the value and importance of a safe and orderly learning environment that supports honesty, integrity, and ethical conduct. The Student Code of Conduct and General Rules and Guidelines ensure the protection of student rights and the health and safety of the College community. The College has established procedures for reporting and addressing alleged violations.
Students must follow the Student Code of Conduct and the General Rules and Guidelines. Also, the instructor may establish reasonable guidelines within the classroom. Violations of the Student Code of Conduct and General Rules and Guidelines may be reported to the Office of Student Compliance.
Instructors will verify participation in a course by the 8th day after the start date of sections less than 8 weeks long, and by the 15th day after the start date of sections 8 weeks or longer. Students who have not participated will be dropped from the course and may be responsible for any non-refundable fees.
Academic Success Coaches (ASC)
Student success is our first goal. Our Academic Success Coaches mentor students to help them meet their educational, personal and career goals. Faculty or staff may refer you to an ASC for help if you are not doing well in a class. Please watch your LCC email for a referral.
We also suggest you contact an ASC on your own if you need help or advice to reach your goals.
Lansing Community College is committed to providing equal employment opportunities and equal education for all persons regardless of race, color, sex, age, religion, national origin, creed, ancestry, height, weight, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, familial status, marital status, military status, veteran’s status, or other status as protected by law, or genetic information that is unrelated to the person’s ability to perform the duties of a particular job or position or that is unrelated to the person’s ability to participate in educational programs, courses services or activities offered by the college.
The following individuals have been designated to handle inquiries regarding the nondiscrimination policies: Equal Opportunity Officer, Washington Court Place, 309 N. Washington Square Lansing, MI 48933, 517-483-1730; Employee Coordinator 504/ADA, Administration Building, 610 N. Capitol Ave. Lansing, MI 48933, 517-483-1875; Student Coordinator 504/ADA, Gannon Building, 411 N. Grand Ave. Lansing, MI 48933, 517-483-1885; Human Resource Manager/Employee Title IX Coordinator, Administration Building, 610 N. Capitol Ave. Lansing, MI 48933, 517-483-1879; Student Title IX Coordinator, Gannon Building, 411 N. Grand Ave. Lansing, MI 48933, 517-483-9632.
Media Release Statement
Photographs, pictures, slides, movies, video, or other media coverage of students may be taken for College-related business, in connection with their enrollment or participation in LCC activities without compensation from LCC, its Trustees, officers, directors, employees, students and agents of each of them. Photographs, pictures, slides, movies, video, or other media coverage of students may be used for any legal purposes.
For rules and procedures on matters such as Academic Calendar, Withdrawals, Incompletes, Appeals, etc., please review the College Catalog, and contact your Academic Advisor or Academic Success Coach.
Emergency Notifications and the Rave Guardian App
The College uses an emergency notification system to provide information on urgent situations such as power outages, weather emergencies, and other incidents related to the safety and security of those on campus. Therefore, it is important that we have the correct contact information on file. To review and update your contact information for those alerts, go to myLCC, School tab, Student eToolbox, and click on “Emergency Notification System”. You will be directed to your RAVE alert personal dashboard, where you can review, update, confirm, and test the phone numbers and email addresses on file. Students with a mobile/cell number on file will receive text alerts. If you made updates to your contact information, please also go to the Banner Self Service Personal Information tab to update your contact information in Banner. You may also want to download the Rave Guardian app which has features to enhance your safety on and off campus. For more information, see the LCC Police Department website.
Academic Advisors help students identify and update programs based on career goals, and assist in building semester course MAPs (degree plans). They are available to discuss transfer options and ensure students are meeting the requirements for graduation. It is highly recommended to schedule an appointment with an Academic Advisor before registration each semester. To schedule an appointment online, visit our Academic Advising webpage. Be sure to also check out the Preparing for Your Appointment page.
I have zero input on the above policies or section of the syllabus. I have to put this stuff here. School requires it.
What I will say, is that I’m here to help. Not only do they pay me to do that, but I want to. I care about you succeeding. I also know very well just how hard it can be. Attending college is never simple or easy. Students in community colleges often have struggles that amaze me. I went to undergraduate at a commuter-based state university. I worked full-time or nearly full-time while I was there. I know how hard that was for me. And what I dealt with back in the 70’s is nothing compared to what most of you are dealing with today. Helping you is why I teach here. If there is anything that is getting in your way – food insecurity, family/illness/work issues, disability issues. Talk to me. Email me. I can’t promise I can fix everything. But if it’s a course-related problem, I will make it work. If it’s something else, I can listen and I’m likely able to point you to people who can help.
An Academic Honors Option is a form of instructional agreement whereby a student can earn an Honors designation on his or her transcript by completing one or more approved enrichment assignments in a non-Honors course. This course allows students with a grade of 3.0 or higher in the course to complete Academic Honors Options. The Academic Honors Option assignment designed by faculty for this course is explained below. If you elect to complete this work and do so successfully, your achievement will be noted on your official LCC transcript. Please be aware that Academic Honors Options DO NOT earn Honors course credit.
Students seeking an Honors Option for ECON 202 may complete the following in addition to all other course work assigned by the instructor:
- A web-based or multimedia project on a particular country’s macroeconomic situation and its current fiscal and monetary policies and options, the choice of country and choice of format approved by the section instructor. This research project may need to include some original research conducted by the student.
More information about scheduling and deadlines is in Unit 1 of the course, and by checking the Suggested Schedule. Plan your own pace and schedule accordingly. To help you plan your scheduling, look at the Suggested Schedule of Work Assignments (click on this link to view Schedule as a web page in a new tab or window).
If I had my way, this section would be much further up instead of being the last section of syllabus. Again, not my decision. I’ve explained earlier here, but my reasoning for the flexibility of scheduling is to provide you the flexibility to deal with other courses and with life issues. I trust you to make good decisions. All I can say, or plead really, is don’t procrastinate. Structure, schedule, and manage your time. If something comes up that is going to disrupt your schedule – you get sick, you decide in week 7 to run off and elope with your best friend in week 8, or God-forbid a close relative gets hospitalized, or whatever – talk to me. Let me know. The sooner, the better because then we have more options on how to work things out.
And that’s it. That’s the Professor’s cut of syllabus!
If you have a question or just want to comment, you can do that here on this site. You’ll have to give your student email address but it will not be posted publicly. It’s only required to help discourage spam comments from bots. Also, to prevent spam comments, your first comment on this site won’t immediately display. It will be moderated. Once approved (I’m checking to see if it’s from a student and not some web bot determined to push political destruction or not-suitable-for-work links), your future comments will display right away. The same is true of other pages in this site.