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Below is a sample syllabus.
Note: This was for an accelerated 3-week course that took place during a "mini-mester." (Mini semester).  A typical course would be around 15 weeks.
How would I improve the syllabus below for a 15 or 16 week course?  I would increase the points to 1,000.  It is good to have a nice round number for your total points. I would also include more quizzes on basic culture, fingerspelling, numbers, and terminology. If I had plenty of time (ha) I'd incorporate one-on-one testing of the students expressive skills. (Which is very important for ASL 3 and up.)

"American Sign Language 2"



Class Days and Time


EDS 52-02 10014 "ASL 2"

Monday -Thursday 9:00AM - 12:00 noon
January 3rd - January 20th

Eureka Hall 307G

Welcome to Class! 
I'm glad you are here!  You can do this!
I'll be your guide as we travel into the world of ASL. I'm an ASL lexicographer (dictionary creator), webmaster, and immersion excursion guide. You've picked a great topic to be studying.  ASL is an  exciting subject that can open for you a new world of relationships and understanding.  - Dr. Bill

William Vicars, Ed.D.  (Dr. Vicars / Bill) 
Email: []   Phone:  (xxx) xxx-xxxx (vp)
Office: Eureka 308 
Office Hours:  (Winter Intersession) M/T/W Noon - 1pm

Course description:
Students will continue to expand vocabulary and concepts acquired in ASL 1. Expansion of conversational range includes talking about other people and activities, giving directions, and making requests. Students develop discourse skills appropriate for establishing connections with deaf acquaintances and handling a variety of interruptions. Through in-class discussions/demonstrations, and course readings. Students are exposed to elements of Deaf culture and the Deaf Community.

Required textbook: 
[Textbook info goes here. Include enough information that the student could easily order the book online. If your campus has a bookstore, include information regarding the location of the bookstore.]

Course home page link: [Link goes here.]

Place to learn fingerspelling:
Place to improve your ability to read fingerspelling:


   Read your syllabus thoroughly
Know how to contact the instructor: 
[Contact info goes here.]
   Take the online quizzes (see the links in the schedule -- scroll down to the schedule). Keep backups of your answers until your grade is posted.
   Take each of the 3 exams, (see the schedule for the time and date)
   Take Dr. Bill out to lunch.  (Just kidding.)
Examinations and assignments:
There are 700 points possible in this class.
To help you prepare for the final exam there are 18 study quizzes. Why do I call them "study" quizzes? Because they will help you study. They are worth about 5 points each. Some are worth more points (see the schedule). These quizzes can be quite helpful as far as helping you prepare for the final exam.



18 "study" Quizzes

Combined total of 100 points

Exam 1

100 points

Exam 2

200 points

Final Exam

300 points


You study the lessons at Then you take the quiz for that lesson.  The link to the quiz for each lesson is found in the schedule in your online syllabus.  Use those links! Lifeprint is full of various resources, videos and practice quizzes. So make sure you are doing the right quiz by using the links in YOUR SYLLABUS in the "schedule" section. 

Final Exam

The final exam is cumulative. I will sign various items (signs, spelled words, numbers, or sentences) to you. You can translate them to English or just string the labels of the ASL signs together.  If you miss one concept or change the meaning of a sentence you may lose points for the whole sentence so practice hard and don't try to bluff your way through this test.  These sentences will be similar to the ones on the website. Becoming familiar with the sentences on the website is a good way to practice for the test.  But, the test sentences may use different combinations of vocabulary, so watch closely.

Your course grade is based
on your percentage of the total points possible:
Scale:  100-95%=A, 90 = A-, 87=B+, 83=B, 80=B-, 77=C+,73=C, 70=C-, 67=D+, 63=D, 60=D-, 59=F.

No-Voicing Policy: 
This is a no voice class.  During class time unless I give you permission you should keep your voice off and not whisper nor rely on "exaggerated mouthing."  If  another student voices to you, you should respond as if you couldn't hear them and ask them (by signing) to communicate with you by signing or fingerspelling (or even writing on paper or the board).  I can reduce your grade, require you to wear ear plugs, or drop you from class for participating in voicing either as a participating listener or the one using voice.  (But, usually I'll just ask you to sit somewhere else.)

No make-ups without an obituary of a close relative and a copy of the "program" from the service or note on the funeral home's stationary, or a note from your medical professional specifically stating that you were too sick to take the test, or from school administrator on school letterhead.  You are expected to attend if you want to get credit for the quizzes and tests. Traffic, sickness not requiring a doctor's visit, family responsibilities, and so forth do not count as "excused absences." However, if you are required to miss a quiz in order to participate in  pre-approved University program non-optional school events such as being on an athletic team--show me the letter from your coach and then send me an email for instructions on how to handle your testing.  Even if you do have an excused absence, I reserve the right to either give you a different but equivalent test or to simply assign the percentage of your most recent equivalent test or a future test. It has been my experience in over 17 years of teaching thousands of students that the low performers always have an excuse. The good students head to school early so traffic isn't a problem, allow time to find a parking space in a distant lot and walk the rest of the way, pre-arrange babysitting and work schedules, have backup plans for transportation, have cold-medicine on the shelf in case they get sick, and/or do well enough on most of their assignments and tests that missing a single day, assignment, or test (for example: to go to a funeral) will not hurt their grade.  I encourage you to do the things good students do so you can get the grade that good students get.  Good students, don't oversleep or get drunk and miss class then show up later with some made up story about their grandmother dying.  If she did die, I'm sorry, (really I indeed DO extend my condolences). If I find out you have lied to me I will FAIL you for the course. Sure, that seems strict, and maybe I am, but that doesn't mean I'm not flexible and willing to work with honest, dedicated students.  If you know your daughter's going to have surgery and you will have to miss a test, email me ahead of time and we will work something out.

Ethics, Attendance, Disabilities, and Class EnvironmentYou may be dropped from class for checking your email during class or accessing websites other than or during class. You may be dropped from class for using your voice or whispering during class.  Turn cell phones to vibrate or silent settings. Do not wear baseball caps during quizzes. No reading newspapers in class or other distracting behavior. No videotaping the lecture or bringing visitors or guests without permission. Students are always expected to work independently on graded quizzes and/or assignments unless specifically directed otherwise by the instructor. Assignments turned in late for any reason may receive no credit. For information on the University's policy regarding cheating and plagiarism, refer to the Schedule of Courses (Legal Notices on Cheating and Plagiarism) and the University Catalog (Policies and Regulations). Penalties for cheating and plagiarism may include receiving an F for a particular assignment, an F for the course, or expulsion from the university. Upon identifying themselves to the instructor and the university, students with disabilities will receive reasonable accommodation for learning and evaluation. For more information, contact the office of Services to Students with Disabilities. This syllabus and the schedule are subject to change in the event of extenuating circumstances. If you are absent from class, it is your responsibility to check on announcements made while you were absent.    [My lawyer made me say all that.  Sorry.]

Pep talk:
You can do this.  I have near infinite patience. I love teaching and explaining.  If you have questions, ask in class or email me with your first and last name, the hour of your class, and the phrase "RESPONSE REQUESTED" in the subject line and I'll strive to get back to you within 48 hours.  If you think I've overlooked your email, feel free to send your question again--I won't feel bothered--rather I'll be grateful for the communication (sometimes email doesn't arrive).  If there is something I can do to make the class better for you please do suggest it.  This class may be one of your more challenging accomplishments but I know if you work hard and put in the time--you will succeed.




In Class



Mon., Jan 03, 2011

Syllabus / Roll / Pics / Intro / Warm ups
Lesson 16

Quiz 16
Quiz 17
Do before Tues


Tues., Jan 04, 2011

Lesson 17
Lesson 18

Quiz 18
Quiz 19
Do before Wed


Wed., Jan 05, 2011

Lesson 19
Lesson 20

Quiz 20 &
Do before Thurs


Thurs., Jan 06, 2011

Lesson 21
First Exam (100 points)

Quiz 21
Quiz 22
Do before Monday


Mon., Jan 10, 2011

Lesson 22
Lesson 23

Quiz 23
Quiz 24
Do before Tues


Tues., Jan 11, 2011

Lesson 24
Lesson 25

Quiz 25
Do before Wed


Wed., Jan 12, 2011

Lesson 26
Lesson 27

Do before Thursday


Thurs., Jan 13, 2011

Review &
Second Exam (200 points)

Quiz 26
Quiz 27


Mon., Jan 17, 2011


Quiz 28
Quiz 29


Tues., Jan 18, 2011

Lesson 28
Lesson 29

Quiz 30 &
Do before Wednesday


Wed., Jan 19, 2011

Lesson 30
Practice Exam



Thurs., Jan 20, 2011

Final Exam (300 points)









Total Possible: