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Syllabus Template

  • The Syllabus Template (.docx file updated October 5, 2022) provides a guide for developing an effective and learner-centered syllabus and outlines the required elements and policy statements for the USI course syllabus.
    • Fall and Summer 2022 changes include updates to links, Title IX and Affirmative Action contact information, and Covid safety and adding Proctorio guidance.
    • The template highlights the recent changes and includes comments with guidance and links to more information.
  • Detailed University Syllabus Statements are included within the Syllabus Template and available on the Provost's Office website.
  • Guidance for Faculty for Fall 2021 from the Provost's Office is available.

Resources for Developing the Syllabus

Designing an Effective Syllabus

  • Creating the Foundation for a Warm Classroom Climate. Harnish, R.J. et al. (2011). Association for Psychological Science Observer.
    This teaching tip article provides examples of transforming syllabus statements into warm and inviting communication with your students.
  • The Syllabus from a Student Perspective. Gannon, K. (2019).
    This checklist guides the specific information that answers questions relevant to your students. Consider presenting some of this content as a FAQ or Q&A.
  • How to Create a Syllabus. Gannon, K. (2019). The Chronicle of Higher Education.
    This 3-part series and interactive guide take a faculty perspective on developing our course syllabus while considering how to make the syllabus an entry point and invitation to the course for our students.
  • Syllabus Review Guide. Student Experience Project.
    A step-by-step guide for using syllabus development or revision as a tool for creating a course that promotes equity, belonging, and growth for all students.
  • A Learner-Centered Syllabus Helps Set the Tone for Learning. Bart, M. (2015). Faculty Focus.
    This highlights features of a learner-centered syllabus and provides prompts to incorporate them.
  • Seven Ways to Make Your Syllabus More Relevant. Moore, C. (2019). Faculty Focus.
    This offers design elements to help students relate to the syllabus content, prepare them for the course, and focus on the learning goals ahead. Bonus: Example of a warm welcome statement to students.
  • Tips Round-up: Syllabi. Bayraktar, B. (2022).
    Resources for creating an engaging and student-centered syllabus.
  • Constructing a Learner-Centered Syllabus: One Professor's Journey. Richmond, A. (2016). IDEA Center Paper #60.This paper provides examples of learner-centered components and a self-assessment.
  • The 3 Essential Functions of Your Syllabus, Part 2. Lang, J. (2015).The Chronicle of Higher Education.
    This article offers strategies to help ensure that students read and become familiar with the syllabus.
  • Tip: Creative Syllabi. Bayraktar, B. (2020).
    Suggestions for visually communicating your syllabus components.

Developing Course Objectives and Student Learning Outcomes

Considering Accessibility and Inclusion

  • Accessible Syllabus
    Tips to build a syllabus that plans for diverse student abilities and to promote student engagement and agency.
  • Inclusion By Design: Survey Your Syllabus and Course Design - A Worksheet.  Brantmeier, E., Broscheid, A., & Moore, C.S. (2017).
    This tool helps you examine the tone and design of your course from an inclusion perspective.
  • Inclusive Syllabus Language. University of Michigan (2017).  
    This webpage provides sample language to communicate expectations to students in an inclusive manner.
  • UDL Syllabus. UDL On Campus, CAST.
    This webpage offers guidance for developing the syllabus elements while considering University Design for Learning (UDL).
  • Creating Accessible Documents. University of Washington.
    This website offers helpful tips for creating accessible documents from common applications.
  • Course Workload Estimator. Rice University
    This tool estimates a student's out of class hours/week based on the planned reading, assignments, and assessments.