College of Education and Human Development - George Mason University

The CEHD Office of Student and Academic Affairs supports faculty and staff in the development of curricula and course syllabi, including the update of online and standard templates for syllabus development, coordination of the syllabus review process, and maintenance of the comprehensive database of CEHD course syllabi.

University policy requires that all students be provided with a syllabus clearly detailing the content of and expectations for each course (as well as university resources) no later than the first day of class. The syllabus is an essential vehicle for creating understanding between the student and faculty member. According to the Stearns Center for Teaching and Faculty Excellence:

“At one level, a course syllabus is a contract between the instructor and the student and is a vital tool for communicating expectations between students and faculty. A well-constructed syllabus provides a road map for the course, answers frequently asked questions, can help to lessen student anxiety, and allows the faculty member to concentrate on instruction.

At another level, though, a syllabus is the embodiment of your philosophy of teaching and learning, and sets the tone for the course. Implicit in every policy, every assignment, every choice of textbook, every discussion topic should be an indication of what you want your students to learn from your course and why you want them to learn it. Because critical thinking is at the heart of academic work, you should emphasize how your course will help students develop the kinds of skills with inquiry and problem solving that will benefit them throughout their time in college and into their lives as professionals.”

The CEHD Online Syllabus Template should be used for any course where online content delivery and course interactions account for more than 75% of total contact time; alternately, the CEHD Standard Syllabus Template should be used for any course having 75% or less of total contact time online.

CEHD Syllabus Component Guidelines

  1. Course Prefix, Course Number and Course Section Number, Title and Credits, Semester, Year, Meeting Day(s) & Time(s), Class Location, Building & Room # - Campus
  2. Instructor Name
    1. Office Hours (either specific or “By Appointment”)
    2. Office Location (Building and Room Number. If none, use Program’s office location.)
    3. Office Phone (additional phone number, if desired)
    4. GMU Email Address
  3. Prerequisites/Corequisites
  4. University Catalog Course Description (EXACT wording from catalog)
  5. Course Overview [Expanded description of course, relevance to Program beyond catalog description, or “Not Applicable.” If this is a University designated writing intensive (WI) or research and scholarship intensive (RS) course, please include appropriate description.]
  6. Course Delivery Method
    For Online Courses Only:
    Under no circumstances, may candidates/students participate in online class sessions (either by phone or Internet) while operating motor vehicles. Further, as expected in a face-to-face class meeting, such online participation requires undivided attention to course content and communication.
    1. Technical Requirements
    2. Expectations
  7. Learner Outcomes or Objectives
  8. Professional Standards (that are met through this course)
  9. Required Texts (Full citations in format required for all assignments in course)
  10. Course Performance Evaluation

    Students are expected to submit all assignments on time in the manner outlined by the instructor (e.g., Blackboard, Tk20, hard copy). [Further information regarding specific course assignment submission instructions may be inserted here or in an applicable category below.]

    1. Assignments and Examinations [Description and value/weighting for each course performance evaluation. If applicable, include the notation, “This is a Performance-Based Assessment” or “Fieldwork experience is required.” [Detailed descriptions of assignments and rubrics for any Performance-Based Assessment should be included at the end of the syllabus.]
    2. Other Requirements (e.g., attendance, writing requirements, participation)
    3. Grading (include grading scale appropriate for UG or GR level; additional grading policies)
  11. Professional Dispositions
  12. Class Schedule
    Note: Faculty reserves the right to alter the schedule as necessary, with notification to students.
  13. Core Values Commitment
  14. GMU Policies and Resources for students
    Policies
    1. Students must adhere to the guidelines of the Mason Honor Code (see https://catalog.gmu.edu/policies/honor-code-system/).
    2. Students must follow the university policy for Responsible Use of Computing (see https://universitypolicy.gmu.edu/policies/responsible-use-of-computing/).
    3. Students are responsible for the content of university communications sent to their Mason email account and are required to activate their account and check it regularly. All communication from the university, college, school, and program will be sent to students solely through their Mason email account.
    4. Students with disabilities who seek accommodations in a course must be registered with George Mason University Disability Services. Approved accommodations will begin at the time the written letter from Disability Services is received by the instructor (see https://ds.gmu.edu).
    5. Students must silence all sound emitting devices during class unless otherwise authorized by the instructor.
    Campus Resources
    1. Support for submission of assignments to Tk20 should be directed to tk20help@gmu.edu or https://cehd.gmu.edu/aero/tk20. Questions or concerns regarding use of Blackboard should be directed to https://its.gmu.edu/knowledge-base/blackboard-instructional-technology-support-for-students/.
  15. Notice of mandatory reporting of sexual assault, interpersonal violence, and stalking: As a faculty member, I am designated as a “Responsible Employee,” and must report all disclosures of sexual assault, interpersonal violence, and stalking to Mason’s Title IX Coordinator per University Policy 1202. If you wish to speak with someone confidentially, please contact one of Mason’s confidential resources, such as Student Support and Advocacy Center (SSAC) at 703-380-1434 or Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) at 703-993-2380. You may also seek assistance from Mason’s Title IX Coordinator by calling 703-993-8730, or emailing titleix@gmu.edu.
  16. For information on student support resources on campus, see https://ctfe.gmu.edu/teaching/student-support-resources-on-campus
  17. For additional information on the College of Education and Human Development, please visit our website http://cehd.gmu.edu/.
  18. Additional Program Content

Review of Syllabi

CEHD Student and Academic Affairs checks all course syllabi each semester for compliance with formatting and guidelines. Any discrepancies are brought to the attention of Division Directors and Academic Program Coordinators for further action.