Syllabus
Purposes of Discussion Section

     * To develop a more in depth understanding of the concepts covered by the lectures and readings
     * To discuss questions that might arise from lectures and the readings, and to generate answers to those questions as a group
     * To enhance your ability to critique social science research, both through discussion and in academic writing
     * To enable you to see the ways in which social psychology is relevant to daily life

Requirements of Discussion Section

     * Read all assigned readings before class.
     * Think critically about the readings as well.  Ask yourself questions as you read (e.g., What are the implications of these research findings for society or for my own life?  Are these conclusions consistent or inconsistent with my personal experiences?).
     * Write a journal entry before each class (discussed in detail in a separate handout).
     * Most importantly, participate actively in discussions and demonstrations.  The concept of discussion is what makes section meetings different than lecture.  Do not expect to sit silently and take notes for 2 hours; do expect to engage in conversation in small groups and with the rest of your section.

Grading

     60% of your grade for Psychology 380 is determined by your three exam scores.
    The remaining 40% is comprised of your discussion section performance, and the breakdown is as follows:
 
 15% based on your research methods paper on helping behavior
 15% based on your film analysis paper
 *10% based on section participation and your semester-long journal

     * "Section participation" will be determined by the quality of your participation in discussion section and the effort you demonstrate in your class performance.  The quantity of your participation is less important.  Good participation in section requires you to attend class regularly, to ask questions when you have them, and to try to respond intelligently and respectfully to the questions and issues raised by others.
     Section participation also requires you to keep a journal throughout the semester, an exercise that is detailed in a separate handout.  Your journal will be an essential part of your ability to participate actively in class.  You will also receive a letter grade for your journal at the end of the semester (journal grading is also explained in the separate handout).  Together, this grade and your contributions in discussion section will be used to assess your section participation, which comprises 10% of your overall course grade.

Paper Guidelines
 
Blind grading: Papers will be graded anonymously.  DO NOT put your name on these assignments, but rather the last 6 digits of your social security number AND your section number.  Papers with names or without identification numbers will be returned to you ungraded and will be considered late.

Formatting: Papers must be typed, double-spaced, and of standard font and margin.  Papers not conforming to these guidelines also will be returned to you ungraded.

Spelling and Grammar: Poor grammar, disorganized structure, and careless spelling will all have an adverse effect on your grade.  The English Composition Board (ECB) offers assistance at all stages of the writing process.  Contact ECB at 764-0429 or go to Angell Hall.

Late Policy: Papers are due by 4:00 pm on the required day.  Any paper turned in after this deadline will be penalized 1/3 grade for each day it is late (e.g., an A- becomes a B+ if it is one day late, a B if it is two days late).  Extensions will not be granted less than 48 hours before the due date.  Only if you speak to me ahead of this time will I consider granting an extension.  In general, if you have questions about a grade, concerns about an assignment, or extenuating personal circumstances that you feel I should know about, you need to bring them to my attention AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.  By the end of the term, it is too late to do anything about most of these concerns and issues, so do not wait until the week before grades are due to talk with me about these matters.

Plagiarism: Plagiarism is not merely turning in an assignment that someone else wrote.  If you include direct ideas or quotes from another source without indicating you have done so, or even if you paraphrase someone elseís ideas without acknowledging that fact, you are still plagiarizing, so always err on the side of caution.  We will address this issue in more detail in section before papers are due, and please ask me if you are uncertain about how to cite references.
 
 

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