From Elaine Turner: UF Policy on Course Syllabi was updated in August, 2013 to include two new requirements: 1) a weekly course schedule of topics and assignments and 2) a statement informing students of the online course evaluation process.
In the process of reviewing our CALS CC standard syllabus statements to comply with the new policy, I came to the conclusion that rather than re-write the “Syllabus Statements” document, it might be clearer to have a CALS Syllabus Policy. We have historically required several syllabus elements that were not required by the university and the CALS CC has approved standard language for the required statements.
Items in red are those which CALS CC has historically required to be included in a course syllabus (at least at the time of submission for course approval or change). Text in green is suggested guidance language explaining the requirement and also a draft standard statement related to the Online Course Evaluation Process.
CALS Syllabus Policy
College of Agricultural and Life Sciences requirements for a course syllabus closely mirror the University of Florida Policy on Course Syllabi (see University of Florida policy on course syllabi). However, there are some elements that are suggested by UF but required by CALS and the CALS Curriculum Committee has reviewed and approved sample syllabus statements for several required elements.
This document is intended to complement the UF Policy, clarify additional CALS requirements and provide suggested language that may be used. The language provided covers the minimum UF and CALS requirements; more details can be added at the instructor’s discretion.
All CALS course syllabi must contain:
- Course prefix and number, course title, number of credits, meeting days and times, prerequisites.
- Instructor’s contact information including office location, telephone number and email address; TA contact information if applicable.
- Course description – this should re-state the description in the catalog.
- Course learning objectives. Course objectives should indicate what the student will be able to do when they have completed the course. See the guidance document at Guidlines for Writing Learning Objectives.
- A weekly course schedule of topics and assignments. 6. Critical dates: exams, due dates for assignments, etc.
- A list of all required and recommended textbooks. Graduate courses should include a reading list of current literature along with classic references or texts where applicable.
- Methods by which students will be evaluated and their grade determine. A grading scale may be done by total points or percentage of total points, but should clearly show the required performance for each letter grade. Plus (+) and minus (-) grades may be used but are not required. There is no standard grading scale (e.g., level of performance for an A grade) in CALS or at UF.
- Information on current UF grading policies for assigning grade points. Grades and Grade Points For information on current UF policies for assigning grade points, see Grades and Grading Policies A statement related to class attendance and options for making up exams and other work. Attendance and Make-Up Work Requirements for class attendance and make-up exams, assignments and other work are consistent with university policies that can be found at: Attendance Policies.
- A statement informing students of the online course evaluation process. Instructors may want to identify a class period when students will be given time to complete the course evaluation in class on their laptop, tablet or smartphone.
Online Course Evaluation Process Student assessment of instruction is an important part of efforts to improve teaching and learning. At the end of the semester, students will have the opportunity to provide feedback on the quality of instruction in this course using a standard set of university and college criteria. These evaluations are conducted online at GatorRator. Evaluations are typically open for students to complete during the last two or three weeks of the semester; students will be notified of the specific times when they are open. It is expected that you will contribute your feedback for this course and the others in which you are enrolled this term. Summary results of these assessments are available to students at GatorRator.
- A statement regarding academic honesty.
As a student at the University of Florida, you have committed yourself to uphold the Honor Code, which includes the following pledge: “We, the members of the University of Florida community, pledge to hold ourselves and our peers to the highest standards of honesty and integrity.” You are expected to exhibit behavior consistent with this commitment to the UF academic community, and on all work submitted for credit at the University of Florida, the following pledge is either required or implied: "On my honor, I have neither given nor received unauthorized aid in doing this assignment." It is assumed that you will complete all work independently in each course unless the instructor provides explicit permission for you to collaborate on course tasks (e.g. assignments, papers, quizzes, exams). Furthermore, as part of your obligation to uphold the Honor Code, you should report any condition that facilitates academic misconduct to appropriate personnel. It is your individual responsibility to know and comply with all university policies and procedures regarding academic integrity and the Student Honor Code. Violations of the Honor Code at the University of Florida will not be tolerated. Violations will be reported to the Dean of Students Office for consideration of disciplinary action. For more information regarding the Student Honor Code, please see: Student Conduct and Honor Code. A statement regarding software use.
All faculty, staff and students of the university are required and expected to obey the laws and legal agreements governing software use. Failure to do so can lead to monetary damages and/or criminal penalties for the individual violator. Because such violations are also against university policies and rules, disciplinary action will be taken as appropriate.
- A statement related to accommodations for students with disabilities
Services for Students with Disabilities
The Disability Resource Center coordinates the needed accommodations of students with disabilities. This includes registering disabilities, recommending academic accommodations within the classroom, accessing special adaptive computer equipment, providing interpretation services and mediating faculty-student disability related issues. Students requesting classroom accommodation must first register with the Dean of Students Office. The Dean of Students Office will provide documentation to the student who must then provide this documentation to the Instructor when requesting accommodation 0001 Reid Hall, 352-392-8565, Disability Resource Center
- A statement related to resources for students.
Campus Helping Resources
Students experiencing crises or personal problems that interfere with their general wellbeing are encouraged to utilize the university’s counseling resources. The Counseling & Wellness Center provides confidential counseling services at no cost for currently enrolled students. Resources are available on campus for students having personal problems or lacking clear career or academic goals, which interfere with their academic performance.
- University Counseling & Wellness Center, 3190 Radio Road, 352-392-1575,
Groups and Workshops
Outreach and Consultation
Community Provider Database
- Career Resource Center, First Floor JWRU, (352)392-1601, www.crc.ufl.edu/
- Additional information
Instructors may choose to clarify in their syllabus their teaching philosophy, expectations for classroom behavior, utilization of elearning, and other information that will help students succeed in the course.
The following statement is recommended for all distance-delivered courses, but it not required.
Each online distance learning program has a process for, and will make every attempt to resolve, student complaints within its academic and administrative departments at the program level. See Student Complaint Process for more details.
- University Counseling & Wellness Center, 3190 Radio Road, 352-392-1575,