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WOMENST 3BB3 Women & Visual Culture

Academic Year: Winter 2016

Term: Winter

Day/Evening: E

Instructor: Dr. Janice Hladki

Email: hladkij@mcmaster.ca

Office: Togo Salmon Hall 509

Phone: 905-525-9140 x 23942

Website:

Office Hours: Thursdays 2:30-4:30



Course Objectives:

Course Description:

“Visual culture” refers to an interdisciplinary field that explores why and how contemporary culture tends to visualize the world and to render experience in visual form. This field analyzes such visual forms as film, photography, virtual reality, advertising, medical imaging, television, magazines, fashion, painting, and sculpture. We will investigate ideas about visual culture generally and concentrate specifically on film and the analysis of cinematic representation.

The primary objective of this course is to develop critical understandings of the complex social meanings in the production and consumption of representations of women. The course focuses extensively on cinematic representations of relations of power, including gender, race, class, sexuality, and disability, and how these relate to spectator practices and to the constitution of women’s subjectivities.

The course materials, both films and readings, engage with feminist, critical race, Indigenous, disability, sexuality, film, and visual culture theories. We focus on how these perspectives might inform critical reformulations of representations of women in contemporary culture. 


Textbooks, Materials & Fees:

Women’s Studies 3BB3 / THTR & FLM 3P03 / CMST 3BB3 courseware pack 


Method of Assessment:

Assignments and Evaluations:

Participation                                      5%

In-Class Test                                     25% (in class Week 6, Tues Feb 9)

In-Class Writing Exercise  #1           20% (in class Week 9, Tues March 1)

In-Class Writing Exercise #2            10% (in class Week 11, Tues March 15) 

Final Exam                                       40% (scheduled by the Registrar’s Office)

Please note: You will receive feedback on the test to meet the University regulations (10% of grades by Fri March 11).

Note-Taking and Critical Analysis:

Take notes on your readings, the lectures, screenings of the films, and post-screening discussions. Keep a record of your critical understandings. This record will assist you with assignments and with participation in class discussions. The establishment of note-taking practices and a written vocabulary of your understandings will contribute to the development of critical analysis skills.

Participation (5%):

Participation in the class process is one of the indicators of your academic performance and potential demonstration of understanding the course material. The expectations include: regular attendance, viewing and reading the assigned materials, contributing to class discussion, respectful listening, and engaging with others’ comments to further our understandings of the materials and thematics.

1) Weekly Discussion

This activity is not graded. However, each week, you will be asked to respond to the material screened with the intent to discuss and analyze. You will participate individually and/or in groups. Students are encouraged to participate in order to clarify ideas and to become comfortable in developing points of view.

2) Attendance (5%)

For 10 weeks of the course (Weeks 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13), I will take a record of your attendance. The attendance sheet will be passed around towards the end of the class. Week 6 will not be counted due to the test, and Week 7 will not be counted due to the mid-term recess. Each of the 10 weeks is graded at .5 mark for a total of 5 marks.

In-Class Test (25%) Week 6, Tues Feb 9

The test is to be written in class, and it is 60 minutes long. It consists of questions that involve interpretation and understanding about lectures, readings, and films screened for Weeks 2 through 5. Further details will be noted in class, prior to the test.

In-Class Writing Exercise #1: Reflection on Reading AND Film (20%) Week 9, Tues March 1

This assignment is designed to further develop the process of critically reflecting on ideas in reading and filmic materials. It is written in class, and you will have approximately 30-40 min to write the assignment. Write legibly.

The exercise comes in TWO PARTS:

  1. a reflection on the reading (1-2 pages, double spaced)
  2. a reflection on the film (2 pages, double spaced)

PART 1: Reflection on the Reading (1-2 pages, double spaced):

--You will be writing 1-2 pages double-spaced. Do not write more than 2 pages.

--You are to write in essay form, using complete sentences and paying attention to the soundness of your ideas.

--Although I will not be marking for strict grammar practices, I will be taking into account the cogency of your writing. It is to your advantage to make your thoughts as understandable as possible by using proper sentence construction and by avoiding colloquial language.

Prior to the class for the exercise, read carefully the article listed under Week 9, Tues March 1:

Garland-Thomson, Rosemarie. (2009). “Breasts.” In Staring: How We Look  (pp. 141-159). New York: Oxford University Press.

--I advise reading the article more than once in order to understand the author’s arguments.

--As you read, underline and/or highlight and/or make notes: you want to identify the key issues/arguments the author is addressing and how she explains their significance.

--These guidelines are to assist you in preparation for the exercise. You will not have access to the courseware pack during the exercise, *but you may bring and use your notes.

--Focus on what is available in the reading; avoid addressing what is missing. Your emphasis is on what the reading offers rather than on what you might consider to be a problem with the reading.

Your reflection on the reading should address the following THREE questions:

--What do you think is the key issue/point/argument that the reading addresses?

--How does the author explain the significance of this issue/point/argument?

--Why is this issue important in terms of thinking about the representation of women’s bodies? (You can address more than one issue if you think it is important to do so.)

These questions will be available to you throughout the exercise, i.e. screened in class.

PART 2: Reflection on the Film (2 pages, double spaced)

Following the screening of Pink Ribbons, Inc in class this week, you will write a critical discussion/analysis of the film. 

--You are asked to write 2 pages double-spaced. Do not write more than 3 pages.

--You are to write in essay form, using complete sentences and paying attention to the soundness of your ideas.

--Although I will not be marking for strict grammar practices, I will be taking into account the cogency of your writing as well as your insightful understanding of the film. It is to your advantage to make your thoughts as understandable as possible by using proper sentence construction and by avoiding colloquial language.

--Write legibly.

You are to write a critical discussion/analysis of the film screened in class by focusing your reflection as follows:

--What do you think are the key ideas in the film?

--Why are these ideas important?

Your goal is to address the key ideas in the film in terms of how the film helps us to think carefully about women’s health and/or women’s bodies. You are welcome to draw from the course reading if the ideas in the reading help you in discussing the ideas in the film, but this is neither an expectation nor a requirement.

These guidelines will be available to you throughout the exercise, i.e. screened in class.

The reflection on the film is NOT: a review of the film, as you would find in a film critic’s review of a popular film; a summary or description of the narrative; a description of why you “like” or “dislike” the film or why you “agree” or “disagree” with it. The reflection is a scholarly written assignment that provides a critical discussion about the film in relation to course ideas. 

Criteria for grading:

--Development of insightful understanding about the reading. (This aspect includes considerations such as the following: Is it evident that the reading has been reviewed and understood? Is the reflection on the key issue/point/argument and why it is important clear, focused, well expressed, and insightful? Is the reflection on the importance of the issue for thinking about the representation of women’s bodies clear, focused, well expressed, and insightful?

--Development of insightful understanding about the film. (This aspect includes considerations such as the following: Does the reflection relate to course ideas? Is the reflection clear and well focused? Is the reflection on the film’s ideas well developed/elaborated? Does the reflection avoid generalization and summary? Is the reflection well stated and expressed? Is the critical discussion/analysis thoughtful and insightful?)

An overall grade is provided.

In-Class Writing Exercise #2: Reflection on Film and Peer Feedback (10%) Week 11, Tues March 15

The reflection on the film is worth 5 marks and the peer feedback component is worth 5 marks. We will spend approximately 30 minutes of class time on this assignment. It is designed to develop skills in critical thinking, film analysis, writing, and collaborative learning.

If you complete both the written reflection on the film and the peer feedback as required, you will get a full grade, i.e. 10 marks out of 10. If you do not write a response, a grade of zero is assigned. If you write a response but do not adequately provide written feedback for your partner, you will receive half of the grade, i.e. 5 marks.

Reflection on the Film:

Focusing on the film screened for Week 11, Persepolis, you will write up to a two-page response (minimum one page), in class following the screening. You are to critically discuss/analyze the film in relation to the following question:

  • What discourses or ideas are generated by the film?

You are to write in essay form, using complete sentences and paying attention to the soundness of your reflection. Although I will not be marking for grammar, it is to your advantage to make your thoughts as understandable as possible by using proper sentence construction and by avoiding colloquial language.

Peer Feedback:

For the second part of the assignment, you will work with a partner and exchange your written responses. You need to do both parts of the feedback for the full grade.

  1. Read your partner’s response and then 1) underline a key idea that is clear and well expressed and 2) circle another idea that you think could benefit from further development/elaboration/explanation. On a separate page from your partner’s reflection, comment on what you have underlined and what you have circled. For the idea you have underlined, explain how it demonstrates a thoughtful and well-argued reflection. For the idea you have circled, provide a comment on how that idea could be made clearer and/or addressed in more depth. For your feedback on each of these components, you need to offer more than simply one sentence. Write a minimum of three sentences.
  2. Next, you discuss verbally with each other why each of you underlined and circled those particular aspects of the written response.

The names of BOTH students and the student numbers are to be printed on the exercise booklet, *making clear who wrote the response and who provided the feedback.

Plagiarism: Please see the commentary above under “Academic Dishonesty Statement” and note the following website for information on how to avoid plagiarism: http://www.mcmaster.ca/academicintegrity/students/index.html.

Consultation: If you have questions about the assessment of a course assignment and you would like to discuss how to do better in future writing projects, you may consult with me (or the teaching assistant) after the assignment has been returned to you. For such consultation, you need to come prepared as follows: 1) reread your assignment with the grading criteria in mind, 2) read and think through the commentary and recommendations, and 3) bring written notes to the meeting about what in particular you would like to discuss and further understand. With these practices, you develop abilities to better evaluate your own writing and critical thinking and to better understand how to make improvements for future projects in your University studies and/or in employment contexts.

Final Exam (40%)

You will be asked to discuss some of the key ideas in the course. Further details will noted in class, closer to the exam. Please note that exams are scheduled by the Registrar’s Office during the exam period and cannot be changed.


Policy on Missed Work, Extensions, and Late Penalties:

Missed or Late Assignments, Extensions, and Requests for Relief for Missed Academic Term Work:

Students are expected to complete the assignments on the specified due dates. Please note that extensions will not be granted and late penalties will not be waived except in exceptional circumstances and on an individual basis. Computer or printer problems, conflicting due dates, and a busy schedule are not considered suitable reasons for extensions. **In all cases, it is YOUR responsibility to follow up with the instructor immediately to see if an extension or other accommodation will be granted, and what form it will take. There are NO automatic extensions or accommodations.

In-Class Test:

If you miss the test, it cannot be made up without official documentation for your absence (e.g. MSAF; medical documentation) for your absence. *I will schedule ONE time for a make-up test. If you do not attend at that time, then I will determine another assignment (e.g. a short essay) worth the same amount.

In-Class Writing Exercises 1 &2:

The exercises are written in class and submitted directly to the course instructor in the scheduled classes. Otherwise, if you miss the class, you are required to provide official documentation (e.g. MSAF; medical documentation) for your absence such that I can approve an accommodation, or a mark of zero will be assigned.

Using the McMaster Student Absence Form (MSAF) on-line self-reporting tool (on MOSAIC):

This is a self-reporting tool for undergraduate students to report absences due to minor medical situations that last up to 3 days and provides the ability to request accommodation for any missed academic work worth less than 25% of the final grade. Please note, this tool cannot be used during any final examination period.

You may submit a maximum of one Academic Work Missed request per term. It is your responsibility to follow up with your Instructor immediately (normally within two working days) regarding the nature of the accommodation. Failure to do so may negate the opportunity for relief. It is the prerogative of the instructor of the course to determine the appropriate relief for missed term work in the course. If you are absent for reasons other than medical reasons, for more than 3 days, or exceed one request per term you MUST visit your Associate Dean's Office (Faculty Office). You may be required to provide supporting documentation. This form should be filled out immediately when you are about to return to class after your absence.

Please note these regulations have changed beginning Fall 2015. If you have any questions about the MSAF, please contact your Associate Dean’s office.


Please Note the Following Policies and Statements:

Academic Dishonesty

You are expected to exhibit honesty and use ethical behaviour in all aspects of the learning process. Academic credentials you earn are rooted in principles of honesty and academic integrity.

Academic dishonesty is to knowingly act or fail to act in a way that results or could result in unearned academic credit or advantage. This behaviour can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: "Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty"), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university.

It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty. For information on the various types of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy, located at www.mcmaster.ca/academicintegrity

The following illustrates only three forms of academic dishonesty:

  1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not one’s own or for which other credit has been obtained.
  2. Improper collaboration in group work.
  3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.

Email correspondence policy

It is the policy of the Faculty of Humanities that all email communication sent from students to instructors (including TAs), and from students to staff, must originate from each student’s own McMaster University email account. This policy protects confidentiality and confirms the identity of the student.  Instructors will delete emails that do not originate from a McMaster email account.

Modification of course outlines

The University reserves the right to change dates and/or deadlines etc. for any or all courses in the case of an emergency situation or labour disruption or civil unrest/disobedience, etc. If a modification becomes necessary, reasonable notice and communication with the students will be given with an explanation and the opportunity to comment on changes. Any significant changes should be made in consultation with the Department Chair.

McMaster Student Absence Form (MSAF)

In the event of an absence for medical or other reasons, students should review and follow the Academic Regulation in the Undergraduate Calendar Requests for Relief for Missed Academic Term Work. Please note these regulations have changed beginning Fall 2015. You can find information at mcmaster.ca/msaf/. If you have any questions about the MSAF, please contact your Associate Dean's office.

Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities

Students who require academic accommodation must contact Student Accessibility Services (SAS) to make arrangements with a Program Coordinator. Academic accommodations must be arranged for each term of study. Student Accessibility Services can be contacted by phone 905-525-9140 ext. 28652 or e-mail sas@mcmaster.ca. For further information, consult McMaster University's Policy for Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities.

Academic Accommodation for Religious, Indigenous and Spiritual Observances

Students requiring academic accommodation based on religion and spiritual observances should follow the procedures set out in the Course Calendar or by their respective Faculty. In most cases, the student should contact his or her professor or academic advisor as soon as possible to arrange accommodations for classes, assignments, tests and examinations that might be affected by a religious holiday or spiritual observance.


Topics and Readings:

Schedule of Classes:

Week 1: Tues Jan 5.  Course Introduction

Week 2: Tues Jan 12.  Perspectives on Visual Culture

Mirzoeff, Nicholas. (1998). What is Visual Culture? In N. Mirzoeff (Ed.), The Visual Culture Reader (pp. 3-11). London: Routledge.

Rogoff, Irit. (1998). Studying Visual Culture. N. Mirzoeff (Ed.), The Visual Culture Reader (pp. 14-26). London: Routledge.

Gorris, Marlene. (1995). Antonia’s Line. Holland / Belgium / UK. 93 min.

Week 3: Tues Jan 19.  Popular Film, Film Theories, and Representation

Strinati, Dominic. (2000). Popular Cinema: Hollywood Narrative and Film Genres [excerpt]. In D. Strinati, An Introduction to Studying Popular Culture (pp. 26-39). London: Routledge.

Stafford, Sally. (2000). Film Theory. In Fiona Carson & Claire Pajaczkowska (Eds.), Feminist Visual Culture (pp. 229-247). Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

Nichols, Bill. (2000). Film Theory and the Revolt Against Master Narratives. In Christine Gledhill & Linda Williams (Eds.), Reinventing Film Studies (pp. 34-52). London: Arnold & New York: Oxford University Press.

Lee, Ang. (2000). Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. USA. 120 min.

Week 4: Tues Jan 26. Gazing and Power: Queer and Critical Race Perspectives

hooks, bell. (1999). The Oppositional Gaze: Black Female Spectators. In Sue Thornham (Ed.), Feminist Film Theory: A Reader (pp. 307-320). Washington Square, NY: New York University Press.

Sturken, Marita, & Cartwright, Lisa. (2009). Modernity: Spectatorship, Power, and Knowledge. In M. Sturken & L. Cartwright, Practices of Looking: An Introduction to Visual Culture (2nd ed.) (pp. 93-139). New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Dunye, Cheryl. (1997). Watermelon Woman. USA. 80 min.

Week 5: Tues Feb 2.  Practices of Performing and Practices of Looking

Gabler, Neal. (1998). The Human Entertainment. [excerpt]. In N. Gabler, Life: The Movie: How Entertainment Conquered Reality (pp. 168-191). New York: Vintage Books.

Stacey, Jackie. (1994). How do I Look? In J. Stacey, Star Gazing: Hollywood Cinema and Female Spectatorship (pp. 1-18). London: Routledge.

Luhrmann, Baz. (2001). Moulin Rouge . USA. 128 min.

Week 6: Tues Feb 9. 

*IN-CLASS TEST TODAY

(no lecture today)

Week 7: Tues Feb 16. 

MID-TERM RECESS. NO CLASSES.

Week 8: Tues Feb 23.  Body Visualities / Body Transformations in Artists’ Short Film and Video

Garland-Thomson, Rosemarie. (2009). A Cultural History (pp. 25-32); A Social Relationship [Excerpt] (pp. 33-39); Beholding (pp. 185-196). In Staring: How We Look. New York: Oxford University Press.

Mitchell, Allyson. (2000). My Life in Five Minutes. Canada. 7 min.

Onwurah, Ngozi. (1991). The Body Beautiful. England. 23 min.

Ellerson, Beti. (2002). Sisters of the Screen: African Women in the Cinema. USA. 73 min. [Excerpts]

Dempsey, Shawna, & Traeger, Tracy. (1990). We’re Talking Vulva. Canada. 5 min.

Hew, Carolynne. (1996). Bangs. Canada. 8 min.

Week 9: Tues March 1: Body and Health Politics

IN-CLASS WRITING EXERCISE #1: REFLECTION ON READING *AND* FILM

Garland-Thomson, Rosemarie. (2009). Breasts. In Staring: How We Look  (pp. 141-159). New York: Oxford University Press.

Pool, Léa. (2011). Pink Ribbons, Inc. USA. 97 min.

.Week 10: Tues March 8. Constituting “Family”

Macdonald, Myra. (1995). Caring and Sharing. In M. Macdonald, Representing Women: Myths of Femininity in the Popular Media (pp. 132-162). London: Edward Arnold.

Russell, Catherine. (1999). Autoethnography: Journeys of the Self [excerpt]. In Experimental Ethnography: The Work of Film in the Age of Video (pp. 275-281). Durham, NC: Duke University Press.

Hoffman, Deborah. (1994). Complaints of a Dutiful Daughter. USA. 44 min.

Week 11: Tues March 15.  Girlhood, Memoir, Revolution

*IN-CLASS WRITING EXERCISE #2: REFLECTION ON FILM

Paronnaud, Vincent, & Satrapi, Marjane. (2007). Persepolis. France. 96 min.

Week 12: Tues March 22.  Colonialism and Resistance

Alloula, Malek. (1998). From The Colonial Harem. In Nicholas Mirzoeff (Ed.), The Visual Culture Reader (pp. 317-322). London: Routledge.

Smith, Linda Tuhiwai. (1999). Introduction. In Decolonizing Methodologies: Research and Indigenous Peoples (pp. 1-18). London & New York: Zed Books.

Demers, Patricia. (2010). Location, Dislocation, Relocation: Shooting Back with Cameras. In Indigenous Women and Feminism: Politics, Activism, Culture (pp. 299-314). Vancouver and Toronto UBC Press.

Claxton, Dana. (1994). I Want to Know Why. Canada. 6 min.

Claxton, Dana. (2004). The Hill. Canada. 4 min.

Niro, Shelley. (2003). The Shirt. Canada. 6 min.

Obomsawin, Alanis. (1995). My Name is Kahentiiosta. Canada. 30 min.

Week 13: Tues March 29. Technology, Action, and the Cultural Icon

Tasker, Yvonne. (2002). Action Heroines in the 1980s: The Limits of Musculinity. In Graeme Turner (Ed.), The Film Cultures Reader (pp.295-310). London: Routledge.

Chaplin, Sarah. (2000). Cyberfeminism. In Fiona Carson & Claire Pajaczkowska (Eds.), Feminist Visual Culture (pp. 265-280). Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

West, Simon. (2001). Lara Croft: Tomb Raider. USA. 110 min.

Week 14: Tues April 5.  Conclusions


Other Course Information:

Instructor:   Dr. Janice Hladki

                     School of the Arts

                     Office: Togo Salmon Hall, Room 509

                     Telephone: (905) 525-9140, Ext 23942

                     Office Hours: Thursdays 2:30-4:30, or by appt.

                     Email: hladkij@mcmaster.ca

Screenings:

Tuesdays during class time. *The films are central to the course, and it is expected that all students will be present for the in-class screenings.

Films are housed at the Library Services desk, Mills Memorial Library, and may be borrowed for review and assignment preparation: regular loans are 48 hours for students (films cannot be renewed); films on Course Reserve are 4-hour loans. DVDs can be played on most personal laptops and any iMac computer in the Library (Learning Commons and the 2nd floor). VHS can be played on the TV systems on the 4th floor lobby. These computers and TVs are open access, i.e., first-come first-serve. Students may also book a room in Lyons (L-416) for VHS and DVD using the on-line booking form on the Lyons' home page, http://library.mcmaster.ca/lyons. If you have any questions about access to the films, please direct them to the staff at the Library Services desk.

Please note that the films and discussions of the films can raise questions about difficult issues such as violence against women, sexual assault, ableism, homophobia, racism, and sexism. In introducing each film prior to screening, I will inform you of potentially difficult issues.

Class Etiquette and Electronic Devices:

Lectures and Discussions: Overall, respect should guide your participation in class. Please arrive on time for lectures. If you have to leave the class early, do so quietly. Refrain from leaving or starting to pack up your things at the end of the class before the lecture ends, as this is disruptive to other students. Please show consideration for your fellow students by listening attentively during lectures and discussions.

Be prepared to focus on the readings and the films. Bring your course readings to class.

Electronic Devices: Students are required to turn off all personal electronic devices. If you need your cell phone on because you have children or need to remain in contact with someone because of a medical emergency, please inform me at the beginning of the class and please leave the cell phone on vibrate. Laptops must be closed for all screenings. Students who consult non-course related content on laptops during class will be required to close their laptops for the duration of the class. 

Accommodations for Students With Disabilities:

Students with disabilities receive accommodations to assist them in completing their programs successfully. With regard to course work, there is assistance with note-taking, assignments, and tests and exams. Please contact Student Accessibility Services (SAS), in the Centre for Student Development, for advice and for arranging accommodations. Appointments can be booked online, in person at the SAS office (MUSC B107), or by phone, ext. 28652. (http://sas.mcmaster.ca/). Note that students must register annually. Self-identification is voluntary, all information is treated confidentially, and access to information must be approved by the applicant. Please consult the following policy, “The McMaster University Policy for Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities,” which recognizes that the University has an obligation “to make its services available in a manner that does not discriminate.”

www.mcmaster.ca/...AcademicStudies/AcademicAccommodation- StudentsWithDisabilities.pdf.

I am in full support of accommodation arrangements, so please make sure I receive a copy of your SAS accommodation letter, preferably by the second week of classes.

Academic Accommodations for Religious, Indigenous, and Spiritual Observances (RISO)

The University recognizes that, on occasion, the timing of a student’s religious, Indigenous, or spiritual observances and that of their academic obligations may conflict. In such cases, the University will provide reasonable academic accommodation for students that is consistent with the Ontario Human Rights Code. If you have any questions during the process, you may seek assistance from the Office of Human Rights & Equity Services (HRES). 

How to request accommodation for Academic Obligations:

You must submit a RISO form (available on your Faculty website) to your Faculty Office within ten (10) working days from the start of the semester in which the accommodation is necessary. For observances for which specific dates/details are not known in advance, inform your Faculty Office of the potential conflict. Your Faculty Office will notify you and your instructor that the request has been approved within five (5) working days after submission. You must then contact your instructor as soon as possible to work out the details of your accommodation (e.g. rescheduling, extension) at least five (5) working days before the date of the conflict. The instructor must respond to you within ten (10) working days of you reaching out to them.

In situations where you must leave class for short periods (e.g., to pray) you should work with your instructor to make mutually agreeable arrangements.

How to request accommodation for a Registrar Invigilated Final Exam:

You must submit a RISO final exam form, which is available only in person at the Registrar’s Office (Gilmour Hall 114) at least ten (10) working days before the start of the exam period. The Registrar will respond to your request at least five (5) working days before the start of the exam period. Late requests will be attempted by the Registrar’s Office, but you may be referred to your Faculty Office to make arrangements for writing your exam outside of the official exam period.

Student Wellness and Student Success:

The Student Wellness Centre (MUSC 10), the second area in the Centre for Student Development, emphasizes the importance of “wellness in mind, body, and spirit” for realizing one’s academic potential. The Centre offers medical and health services as well as personal counseling. (http://wellness.mcmaster.ca/)

The Student Success Centre provides services to assist students in improving skills for academic success (e.g. ESL, academic development, writing support). The Centre is located in Gilmour Hall 110. (x24254)

Academic Dishonesty Statement:

You are expected to exhibit honesty and use ethical behaviour in all aspects of the learning process. Academic credentials you earn are rooted in principles of honesty and academic integrity.

Academic dishonesty is to knowingly act or fail to act in a way that results or could result in unearned academic credit or advantage.  This behaviour can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: “Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty”), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university.

It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty.  For information on the various types of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy, located at http://www.mcmaster.ca/academicintegrity

The following illustrates only three forms of academic dishonesty:

  1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not one’s own or for which other credit has been obtained.
  2. Improper collaboration in group work.
  3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.

Modification of Course Outlines:

The instructor and university reserve the right to modify elements of the course during the term. The university may change the dates and deadlines for any or all courses in extreme circumstances. If either type of modification becomes necessary, reasonable notice and communication with the students will be given with explanation and the opportunity to comment on changes. It is the responsibility of the student to check their McMaster email and course websites weekly during the term and to note any changes.

Email Correspondence Policy:

It is the policy of the Faculty of Humanities that all email communication sent from students to instructors (including TAs), and from students to staff, must originate from each student’s own McMaster University email account. This policy protects confidentiality and confirms the identity of the student. Instructors will delete emails that do not originate from a McMaster email account.

Avenue to Learn:

In this course we will be using Avenue to Learn. In the week following the class, the lecture notes will be posted on Avenue. Details about assignments and any necessary announcements will also be posted. Students should be aware that, when they access the electronic components of this course, private information such as first and last names, user names for the McMaster e-mail accounts, and program affiliation may become apparent to all other students in the same course. The available information is dependent on the technology used. Continuation in this course will be deemed consent to this disclosure. If you have any questions or concerns about such disclosure please discuss this with the course instructor.

Consultation:

If you have a question about the class or assignments, don’t forget to review the course outline. If you wish to speak to me outside of class time, please feel free to drop by during my office hours. I will try to arrange another time with you if these hours do not suit. I prefer to discuss important matters in person and in the exchange of conversation. This includes questions about assignments and evaluations. I am happy to handle brief, logistical questions via email, but I cannot provide an in-depth response. If you have a question that may be helpful to other people in the course, such as a general query about course requirements, I encourage you to ask that question during class time.

If you need to email me (hladkij@mcmaster.ca), please note that your email must originate from your official McMaster University email account. See the Faculty of Humanities policy above. I will do my best to respond to email within 48 hours. Messages received Friday to Sunday will be answered no later than Tuesday. Please note that consultation emails need to follow professional protocols: compose your email using professional language and avoid informal language and casual modes of address.

Course Evaluation:

Your feedback is important. You will have the opportunity to complete an online course evaluation near the end of the term. Information about when and how to complete the evaluation will be shared in class. I encourage you to take the time to complete evaluations for all of your courses.