For a pdf copy of the syllabus, click here.

COM 3401 Business and Professional Communication Syllabus

Fall 2016
Section D505 meets Mondays from 2:30 pm-5:00 pm in room N1019
Section HE99 meets Thursdays 6:00 pm-8:30 pm in room N519

Professor David Lee, Ph.D.
Humanities Department, Room A630
Office Hours: Thursdays from 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm by appointment
Phone: 718-260-8298; Email:
3 credit hours; core comm
ENG 1121, or COM 1330 or higher, or department approval

PLEASE NOTE: This syllabus may be subject to change at the Professor’s discretion.

Course description:
Principles of communication within organizations. Topics and activities include organizational communication and communication theory, group problem solving, resumes, cover letters, interviewing, and formal presentations.
Required Textbook:
Business Communication for Success. (2015). By Scott McLean. ISBN 13: 978-0-9823618-5-6.

This is an Open Educational Resource (free electronic textbook). It is on the Blackboard Site; the Open Lab Site, or available for download here:
Note that the City Tech Bookstore will not be carrying this textbook.

Literacy Requirement
This course requires strong, college-level English literacy skills. You will be required to read, write, speak, listen to and understand English beyond a high school level. Students not meeting these basic literacy requirements are strongly urged to reconsider taking this course.

Technology Requirements
As a hybrid course, COM 3401 will be taught both in person and online. Familiarity using a web browser and easy access to a computer with high speed internet is required. This course requires the use of CUNY Portal, Blackboard, Open Lab and a City Tech email address. All of these electronic resources are available on the “Quick Links” drop down menu of the City Tech Homepage ( You must go through the process of registering for each of these no-cost internet services.

This class requires the use of Microsoft Office Software. A basic familiarity with Microsoft Word and Microsoft PowerPoint is required. This normally $200 software package is available to you for FREE as a CUNY student. To download your free copy, first go to the CUNY Portal and login. Then scroll down for the CUNY eMall logo. Then click on the software icon, and then the Microsoft link.

This class will have a total of four online meetings (see schedule, below). Please note that these meetings are “asynchronous,” meaning that you are NOT required to be online during the scheduled date and time that week. You are only required to complete the weekly assignments at some time BEFORE our weekly meeting. So, for example, if you are in Section D505, and the class is designated as “online” in the syllabus, you do not need to be online during our regularly scheduled meeting time, Monday at 2:30 pm. However, you are required to submit all weekly assignments before the start of that class period.

Please note that these technology requirements are not negotiable. Students who fail to utilize these electronic communication tools with likely receive a grade of F in the course.

Technology Support:
These days the professional world depends on electronic communication. City Tech is committed to helping students master email, Blackboard, Open Lab, Microsoft Office and other digital communication tools.
iTec is where students can get assistance with their technology needs. iTec is located in room G601. Here is their contact information:
iTec, Room G601, (718)-254-8565

Welcome to Business and Professional Communication!
Aside from job specific skills, excellent communication skills are the number one skill employers look for in potential employees. This course will be practical and geared towards gaining an edge in your career through a better understanding of the importance of communication for job satisfaction, career building, branding, and working in groups. I am here to serve you and help build confidence and hope. But first, here are some sobering facts.
Did you know that Americans work harder and longer than Canadian, French and German citizens? In the U.S. 50 plus hour work weeks are not uncommon. There is less job security, and according to Time Magazine, young Americans are more stressed out than ever (Sifferlin, 2013). In the last 30 years productivity has gone way up but wages are pretty flat. Meanwhile the top 1% has seen a 240% increase in wealth. The minimum wage has gone up only a third of the cost of living (Gilson, 2011). “Digital overtime” means that we are “always on,” expected to respond to emails anytime. What’s going on here?

This is what we need to understand in this course in order to gain a competitive edge in our careers. These days “average” just won’t cut it. If we want better jobs we need to practice the skills that all employers are looking for: Communication. The goal of this course is to develop your professional communication skills and knowledge. Success requires communication theory, setting goals, and practicing communication skills. Competent presentations; successful interview tips and simulations; professional emails; cover letters and resumes that stand out from the crowd. Communication is the key to all of these things, and the best way to learn is to practice. I want to help you get a competitive edge for a sustainable, satisfying work life.

Why this course may be different from what you are used to:
The best way to get better at communication is by doing it. Many college courses involve passively receiving information from lectures and the text book, then restating them on an exam for a grade. This class involves that, but more. Namely, you will be making presentations and actively participating in class discussions, groups and role playing exercises. Shy and reticent students will be gently but firmly nudged outside of their comfort zone to become more vocal in class and groups. Non-participation is not an option.

ASSIGNMENTS (and other course requirements)

Weekly Reading Responses
Every week, you will post a typed response to the weekly readings (one page, max) on Blackboard. The purpose of these responses is to summarize the assigned textbook chapter, as well as offer a critical opinion. The reading response should address both chapters for the week, not just one. You must make direct reference to the text and provide page numbers. Please pose a least one discussion question that others can respond to. You post these responses each week for evaluation so please be sure to proofread and revise accordingly. Spelling and grammar mistakes detract from your grade. In turn, each student is expected to write a paragraph in response to at least three Weekly Reading Response each week (in the comments section)

Two Impromptu Speeches
One of the primary goals of this class is for you to organize your thoughts and present them clearly. The impromptu speeches will give you the best opportunity to think on your feet and recognize the importance of a well-organized message. They will also give you the opportunity to become more comfortable speaking in front of your peers, while practicing your skills in adapting to audience feedback. You will be given approximately one minute and thirty seconds to deliver each impromptu speech. Each student will be asked twice, at random, to give an impromptu speech with minimal preparation on a topic of the Professor’s choice. Impromptu Speeches are not scheduled, so it is important that you are present during each class.

Final Presentations/Oral Exams
This semester you will be researching a topic, creating a speaking outline and PowerPoint presentation, and finally delivering a tightly organized, well argued, well-rehearsed and polished presentation. Your final presentation will be your oral examination in this class.

The idea with these presentations is to teach the professor about your major and the profession you wish to go into. You must conduct research about your chosen field using the internet, library materials and/or in-person interviews. You will also establish yourself as a credible speaker by displaying sincere interest in your topic and sharing your own professional and academic experiences.

Subtopics may include (but are not limited to) what you have learned in the course of your education and professional experience; communication problems and solutions in your profession; the impact of communication technologies; fast growing careers; personal branding; professional opportunities for multilingual students; globalization; migration; professional presentation and attire; interview do’s and don’ts, conflict resolution, etc. Other topics from the news, textbook and the Blackboard Discussion Board will be considered.

The final presentation is the culmination of the entire course. It will be evaluated on the following components:

Draft Outline: The outline should be around three to five pages, using the outline template provided and modelled closely after the sample outline provided. Three sources are required, cited in three places: In a “Work Cited” section at the end of the outline; “in-text” citations (with author or title and year in brackets) whenever you mention a fact obtained through research. For example (Jones, 2015); and finally you should mention your source of information in the text of your speech. Papers with less than three or more than five sources will be considered unacceptable. The draft outline is due early in the semester and your grade will be based on how close to completion your outline is. The instructor will be commenting on your outline and returning it to you in order to incorporate corrections and suggestions. You will then make the needed corrections and hand in a second draft. Each outline must contain the information “DRAFT” and “FINAL” at the top of the page. Both outlines will be submitted via Blackboard.

Final Outline: Right after your Final Presentation you must hand in a printed Final Outline. The final outline may contain further improvements as directed by the professor. Your presentation must follow the outline closely.

Final Presentations/Oral Exam: The semester culminates in a professional oral presentation that also counts as your final exam. Each Student will be graded on their professional appearance, oral presentation skills (such as vocal delivery, clarity, eye contact, non-verbals, etc.) and the quality of research and organization. The professor will be looking for well-rehearsed, polished presentations with interesting and exciting facts, stories and professional quality visuals. During the presentations, the professor and the students who are not presenting will be evaluating the presentation. The time limit for the oral presentation is six to eight minutes, which will be strictly enforced. Those speaking more or less than a minute outside of the 6 to 8 minute requirement will not receive a grade higher than C. If you don’t show up on your assigned day you get an automatic F on this assignment.

Presentation Power Point: These days Microsoft’s PowerPoint software is the standard form of visual aid. You have been instructed to download the free software from CUNY and become familiar with the basic functions. Your guiding principles for the slides should be: Clarity of presentation, professional appearance, and relevance to topic. Your professor will be looking for interesting, pleasant pictures accompanied by minimal text. Charts and graphs are excellent as long as they are easy to read and you can explain them clearly. Each slide can have up to three bullet points, maximum. Slides with too much text will be considered unacceptable. You are forbidden to read the content of your presentation off the slides.

Group Assignment
Most workplace communication requires team collaboration. In this course you will work with three peers to research, outline, and take turns speaking about different aspects of a topic of Business and Professional Communication as assigned by the Professor.

Students at City Tech are on the path towards a variety of different professions. Meeting with others in your major is a chance to compare notes and share ideas. Students will be grouped together according to their majors and/ or common interests. The group will work together throughout the semester, and they will present their final presentation on the same day. During group workshops you will help each other with your respective topics, reading each other’s outlines and providing constructive criticism.

Towards the end of the semester, each member of the group will evaluate the other two members anonymously. The professor will consider these evaluations when assigning the grade for the group assignment. The professor is looking for detailed assessment of your group process, and constructive criticism is a requirement. Superficial comments will be considered unacceptable.

Peer Group Evaluation
During Final Presentations, those in the audience will complete a one page evaluation form for each presentation. The two evaluation criteria are content (words and visuals) and delivery (preparation, voice, eye contact, etc.). You are expected to make thoughtful comments indicating the strengths of the presentation as well as room for improvement. By evaluating others you will become a more active listener, gain a better understanding of the concepts and skills associated with public speaking, and reflect on your own speaking skills. You are in this class to become not only a competent speaker but also an effective evaluator of messages. Superficial comments such as “good job” or “eye contact ok” will be considered unacceptable and will not receive credit. Your handwriting or printing must be neat and clearly legible.

Blackboard quizzes.
You will be required to complete the online quizzes at some point before the Final Presentations begin. Each quiz will be about 10 T/F and multiple choice questions about the textbook. It is strongly recommended that you complete the questions after doing the readings, because if you leave it to the end of the course you will be busy with other end of the semester course work. Please note that these quizzes are open-book. They are not timed and you will have two chances to take each quiz. Your highest score will be used.

Resume, Cover Letter and Mock Interviews
In this class, each student will develop, revise, and submit both a one page cover letter applying for a (real) job posting, as well as a personal resume tailored to fit that specific job posting. In the letter you are required to persuade your potential employers about how your unique experience and skills will benefit the company or agency, etc. I suggest highlighting the most impressive aspects of your education and previous employment experience, and tailoring the presentation of your personal and professional qualities in order to fit the job description. Model resumes and cover letters will be provided.

The first draft must contain the words “DRAFT” at the top of the page. The professor will critique these drafts and return them to you with comments, suggestions and corrections. You will then make all the needed corrections and incorporate the suggestions and submit a final resume and cover letter. These must contain the word “FINAL” at the top of the page.

You will then engage in a mock job interview where you answer questions based on your resume and cover letter. You must bring printed copies of your cover letter and resume which will be provided to the instructor and peers, who will spend 15 minutes interviewing you. The roles will then reverse, allowing each person to serve both as an interviewer and interviewee.

Class Participation
Your class participation will be graded by taking into account:

1) Your oral participation during class (including asking questions and answering question posed by the professor; sharing your own knowledge and work experience during class; sharing your informed opinions on issues being discussed, etc.)

2) Your professional demeanor including your attitude; punctuality; paying attention; taking notes and appearing to be prepared, engaged and attentive; being cordial and polite; and your willingness to engage with and contribute to your group. etc. Treat this class like a job. Please see the section below on the strict lateness/ absent policy. The following behaviors will result in you being marked absent for the entire class period: texting in class; sleeping or dozing off during class; not taking notes during the lectures; using your laptop or electronic device for anything besides taking notes. Additional forbidden behaviors appear in the Etiquette section below.

3. Towards the end of the semester before the Final Presentations each student is required to meet with me one on one to go over your speech. Your professional, polite email and punctuality will be factored into your Participation grade.

GRADING categories with weights (%)
Weekly Reading Response 5%
Impromptu Speeches 5%
Resume and Cover Letter (draft and revised) 15%
Group Assignment 10%
Final Presentation/ Oral Exam (Total of 40%)
• 1st Draft Outline 5%
• 2nd Draft Outline 5%
• Oral Presentation (graded on content, delivery and final outline) 25%
• PowerPoint (5%)
Peer Evaluations of Presentations 5%
Quizzes and Exams 10%
Class Participation 10%
Total 100%


Asynchronous, online-only classroom meetings are indicated by blue text
(PLEASE NOTE: This schedule may be subject to change.)

Week 1 (Thursday August 25 /Monday August 29) IN PERSON. We begin with introductions and reading the syllabus, providing an overview of the course and introduction to the assignments. Communication studies and the subfields, theories and methods are introduced. Working groups for the semester will be assigned. Homework: Read the syllabus thoroughly and take Blackboard Quiz on syllabus. Become familiar with Blackboard and Open Lab Sites. Begin considering Final Presentation topics. Reading for following class: Chapters 1 and 2. Reading Response required on Blackboard.

Week 2 (Thursday, September 1 only. No class on Monday, September 5) ONLINE: Topics include work today, job prospects, and how communication determines employment outcomes. The topics in Chapter 1 and 2, such as preparation and norms of professional conduct, will start a Blackboard discussion board topic focused on communication in business and professional settings. Students will be encouraged to give examples from their own job and life experience. For homework, decide on a topic for your final presentation. Reading for following class: Chapters 3 and 4. Reading Response required on Blackboard.

Week 3 (Thursday September 8 /Monday September 12) IN PERSON. Group Workshops. We address the limitations of a “messaging” model of communication and consider dialogic or back-and-forth models. Theories of self-organization. Criteria for Draft Outlines presented (due in two weeks); examples provided. Meet in groups to find common themes. For homework, research topic and find references for Draft Outlines due in two weeks. Cite each of your three sources in three places using instructions provided. Reading for the following class: Chapters 5 and 6. Reading Response required on Blackboard.

Week 4 (Thursday September 15 /Monday September 19). IN PERSON. Group Workshops. We meet in groups and help each other come up with ideas for the Final Presentations. Bring a first draft of your Final Presentation. I will visit each group to check on progress, answer questions and offer suggestions. Your homework will be to work further on the Draft Outline and have it ready for next week. Reading for following class: Chapters 7 and 8. Reading Response required on Blackboard.

Week 5 (Thursday September 22 /Monday September 26). ONLINE. Draft outlines due on Blackboard. Each group member provides a paragraph-long progress report on Blackboard, describing their work process as a team and individual roles. I present on audience-centered presentations. Students should read and understand the resume and cover letter assignments. Your homework will be to research employment opportunities, locate a specific job (or internship) and create a resume and cover letter tailored towards the specifications in the posting. Readings for the following week: Chapters 9 and 10. Reading Response required on Blackboard.

Week 6 (Thursday September 29 /Thursday October 6. No class Monday October 3 and Monday October 10. October 6 follows Monday Schedule). ONLINE. Draft resume and cover letter due on Blackboard. The Professor will provide feedback on your Draft Outlines. Then we will begin an online exercise that focus on your goals and strengths. I will present on social and professional networks, and strategies such as informational interviews. Your homework is to take my feedback on your draft outlines provided and incorporate them into the new and improved final version, due next week. Reading for following class: Chapters 11 and 12. Reading Response required on Blackboard.

Week 7 (Thursday October 13 /Monday October 17). IN PERSON. Final outlines due on Blackboard. I provide feedback on your resumes and cover letters and present about job interviews. Mock Interview assignment introduced, that will take place next week. During Mock Interviews I may ask you questions about the position and company/ organization you are ‘applying’ for –so you should get to know their website and take notes showing that you have some background knowledge. Be prepared to show how you have the skills needed to help the job achieve their goals. You should also prepare a few questions for the interviewer about the organization and your job requirements. For homework, revise resumes and cover letters according to feedback received. Print out a copy of each and bring to class the following week. You will also be provided with sample interview questions in preparation for mock interviews. Reading for Following Class: Chapter 13 and 14. Reading Response required on Blackboard.

Week 8 (Thursday October 20 /Monday October 24) IN PERSON. Mock interviews. Final resumes and cover letters due on Blackboard. Show up to class dressed in neat business clothes that you would wear to a job interview. Professor chooses students to act out mock interview. I provide feedback afterwards on what I liked and where there may be room for improvement. Then in groups you will take turns conducting mock interviews. Visual aids and PowerPoint will be discussed. For homework I want you to create visual aids for your Final Presentation using Microsoft PowerPoint, due next week. Reading for following class: Chapter 15 and 16. Reading Response required on Blackboard.

Week 9 (Thursday October 27 /Monday October 31) ONLINE. PowerPoint Slides due on Blackboard. Links provided for search engines, company websites, job boards, professional organizations, etc. Topics include professional conduct online, being selective about what you share on social media platforms, and online portfolios. By October 31 I will provide a midterm grade for each student. For homework please begin practicing your presentation. Reading for following class: Chapter 17 and 18. Reading Response required on Blackboard.

Week 10 (Thursday November 3 /Monday November 7) IN-PERSON. Group Workshops. Feedback on PowerPoint slides provided. During group workshop each student does a full run-through of their presentation in front of other group members. Arrange for someone in the group to bring a laptop or tablet so you can practice with PowerPoint. Your homework will be to revise and update your slides, according to my feedback. Evaluation of group members due on Blackboard. Make any changes needed to the outline and continue rehearsing your final presentation. Reading for Following Class: Chapter 19. Reading Response required on Blackboard.

Week 11 (Thursday November 10 /Monday November 14). IN PERSON, by appointment. Evaluation of group members due on Blackboard. Mandatory in-person, one on one meetings to run through your presentation. These meetings can take place during scheduled class periods as well as during office hours. It is your responsibility to schedule at least one half hour meeting via email.

Week 12 (Thursday November 17 /Monday November 21) IN PERSON, by appointment. Mandatory in-person one on one meetings to run through your presentation. These meetings can take place during scheduled class periods as well as during office hours. It is your responsibility to schedule at least one half hour meeting via email.

Week 13 (Monday November 28 /Thursday December 1. No class Thursday November 24.) IN PERSON. Final Presentations. Final Outlines are due.

Week 14 (Monday December 5 /Thursday December 8) IN PERSON. Final Presentations. Final Outlines are due.

Week 15 (Monday December 12 /Thursday December 15) IN PERSON. Final Presentations. Final Outlines are due.


1. Demonstrate professionalism and composure across various communication channels. • Identify and adapt to changes in audience characteristics.
• Incorporate language that captures and maintains audience interest in message.
• Identify and manage misunderstandings.
• Demonstrate situational credibility.
• Demonstrate competence and comfort with information.
• Recognize time constraints of a communication situation and know how to operate within them.
• Manage multiple communication goals effectively.
•Adapt messages to the demands of the situation/context.

2. Possess an understanding of the how to prepare and deliver professional speeches. • Draw relationships between prior knowledge and the information provided by the speaker.
• Demonstrate an understanding of warranted claims.
• Draw valid inferences from the information.
• Identify the features of verbal and nonverbal information.
• Identify/evaluate evidence to support views.
•Assess the validity of evidence.
• Identify patterns of reasoning and judge the validity of arguments.
• Analyze the information make inferences to draw conclusions.

3. Demonstrate active listening skills. • Listen with an open mind.
• Distinguish facts from opinions.
• Distinguish main points from supporting evidence.
• Demonstrate awareness that one’s knowledge, experience, and emotions affect listening.
•Use verbal and nonverbal behaviors that demonstrate willingness to listen to messages when variables such as setting, speaker, or topic may not be conducive to listening.

4. Display observational and critical evaluation skills by critiquing speeches in a professionally appropriate fashion in oral/written format. •Draw relationships between prior knowledge and the information provided by the speaker.
•Make warranted claims with evidential basis
• Identify the types of verbal and nonverbal information.
• Draw valid inferences from the information.
• Identify the information as evidence to support views.
•Assess the acceptability of evidence.
•Identify patterns of reasoning and judge the validity of arguments.


1. Gather, interpret, and assess information from a variety of sources and points of view. Students will be assessed on ability to:
•Recognize and be able to use basic reasoning.
•Support arguments with relevant and adequate evidence.
•Identify facts, issues, and problems relevant to the topic.
•Research effectively information required for message preparation.
•Demonstrate competence and comfort with information.
•State intentions and purposes when appropriate.

2. Evaluate evidence and arguments critically or analytically. Students will be assessed on ability to:
•Draw relationships between prior knowledge and the information provided by the speaker.
•Demonstrate an understanding of the nature of inference.
•Identify the types of verbal and nonverbal information.
•Draw valid inferences from the information.

3. Produce well-reasoned written or oral arguments using evidence to support conclusions. •Structure a message for effectiveness with an introduction, main points, transitions, and a conclusion.
•Choose appropriate and effective organizing methods for message.
•Identify communication goals.
•Use summary statement(s) in appropriate contexts.
•Outline the key points and sub-points of their spoken message.
•Accomplish their communication goals.
• Select the most appropriate and effective medium for communicating.

4. Identify the information as evidence to support views.
•Assess the credibility of evidence.
•Identify patterns of reasoning and judge the validity of arguments.
•Analyze the information and inferences in order to draw conclusions.

5. Identify and engage with local, national, or global trends or ideologies, and analyze their impact on individual or collective decision-making Students will be assessed on ability to:
• Identify and adapt to changes in audience characteristics.
• Incorporate language that captures and maintains audience interest in message.
• Identify and manage misunderstandings.
• Demonstrate situational credibility.
• Demonstrate competence and comfort with information.
• Recognize time constraints of a communication situation and know how to operate within them.
• Manage multiple communication goals effectively.
• Adapt messages to the demands of the situation/context.

6. Articulate and assess ethical views and their underlying premises. Students will be assessed on ability to:
• Demonstrate an awareness of personal, ideological, and emotional biases.
• Demonstrate awareness that each person has a unique perspective.
• Demonstrate awareness that one’s knowledge, experience, and emotions affect listening.
• Use verbal and nonverbal behaviors that demonstrate willingness to listen to messages when variables such as setting, speaker, or topic may not be conducive to listening.
• Identify instances of bias and prejudice in a spoken message.
• Specify how bias and prejudice may affect the impact of a spoken message.

7. Identify and apply the fundamental concepts and methods of a discipline or interdisciplinary field exploring the relationship between the individual and society, including, but not limited to, anthropology, communications, cultural studies, history, journalism, philosophy, political science, psychology, etc. • Students will be able to show how communication is used to:
• Manage and resolve group conflicts effectively.
• Approach and engage in conversation with new people in new settings with confidence.
• Negotiate effectively.
• Allow others to express different views and attempt to understand them.
• Effectively express ideas while respecting others’ rights.
• Convey empathy.
• Understand and value differences in communication styles.
• Exhibit open-mindedness about and receptive of another’s point of view.
• Motivate others to participate and work effectively as a team.
• Understand and implement different methods of building group consensus.
• Set and manage realistic agendas.

Statement on Missed Assignments
Do to the numerous deadlines in this course, late assignments will not be accepted under any circumstance. No exceptions, whatsoever. For assignments you miss, you will receive a grade of zero (F).

A student may be absent without penalty for 10% of the number of scheduled class meetings during the semester. A total of 10% of absences from any class is permitted, no matter what the excuse. Absence from class is defined as any time the student’s physical body is not inside the assigned classroom (whether from non-attendance, lateness, sleeping during classes, taking unauthorized breaks, or leaving early).

• This class meets 1 time/week: Allowable absence is ONLY 1.5 CLASSES.
3 late entries to class is equivalent to ONE ABSENCE. Lateness is defined as any student not present during roll call, which takes place during the first few minutes of each class.
Each absence after the allowable 1.5 absences will result in a single letter grade reduction of your final grade. This means that if you have a C for your final grade (for example), a single absence beyond the allowable amount will bring your final grade down to a D, and so on!
• Please note that sleeping or putting your head down on your desk means that you are not present for that class, and you will be asked to leave and marked absent for that day. The same goes for unauthorized use of electronic devices such as texting.

The policy on absences and lateness, stated above, will be strictly enforced. No exceptions will be made. The professor will keep accurate, detailed records of all lates and absences from class, and may assign a WU grade (withdrew unofficially) to any student who exceeds that limit. A student is required to take the responsibility of keeping track of his/her own absence from class. It is not the Professor’s responsibility to bring your lates or absences to your attention. When it exceeds four hours, you should make an appointment to discuss the problem with me.

Academic Integrity at City Tech
“Students and all others who work with information, ideas, texts, images, music, inventions, and other intellectual property owe their audience and sources accuracy and honesty in using, crediting, and citing sources. As a community of intellectual and professional workers, the College recognizes its responsibility for providing instruction in information literacy and academic integrity, offering models of good practice, and responding vigilantly and appropriately to infractions of academic integrity. Accordingly, academic dishonesty is prohibited in The City University of New York and at New York City College of Technology and is punishable by penalties, including failing grades, suspension, and expulsion.” (NYCCT Academic Integrity Policy).

Plagiarism will not be tolerated. Any information you find on the web or at the library or in books must be cited in 3 places: In a Works Cited section, in-text, and out loud while you are giving your presentation. Any form of plagiarism, intentional or otherwise, will earn you a grade of F for that assignment. Further offenses will result in a grade of F in the course and you will be reported to the City Tech Office of Student Affairs.

You are expected to turn in original work of high standard. Work will be graded on given criteria as well as on spelling, grammar, and formatting. You are expected to have read assigned material before coming to class and be prepared with some discussion questions. You may be asked to give an Impromptu Speech on the assigned material during class, and the Professor may also ask you questions about the assigned reading during class. Please plan ahead. Professional standards require that all assignments must be submitted by the deadline in order to receive credit. No exceptions will be made.

It is expected that students in this class will conduct themselves with good sense, courtesy, and dignity in all course-related activities. A level of formality is required for this class above and beyond your everyday conduct. This includes your behavior towards other students and the professor. The following behaviors during class will result in each offender being marked absent for that day.
• Texting
• Falling asleep (or appearing to be asleep) during class
• Talking while the Professor is trying to get your attention
• Holding side conversations when somebody else is speaking
• Bathroom breaks longer than 10 minutes
• Slouching, eye-rolling and ‘dirty looks’
• Any other form of behavior that I decide is inappropriate or disruptive

You are required to take notes during lectures. Bathroom breaks lasting longer than 10 minutes will require explanation after class, otherwise you will be marked late or absent for the day.

CELL PHONES, TEXT MESSAGING, MUSIC DEVICES, or other forms of communication technology are prohibited in the classroom. Please show respect by turning off all technology and removing earphones etc. before entering the classroom. I understand that some people take notes on a laptop or tablet, but I encourage you to take notes by hand and transfer them to your device after class if needed. This is to help you avoid the temptation of using your laptop or tablet for other reasons during class. I walk around the room and glance at your screens and I can tell when you are using it for another purpose. If you have an emergency, politely excuse yourself from the room to use the phone.

Suggested attire:
Looking neat and presentable can give us confidence and improve our self-esteem. Please wear to class what you would wear to an interview. “Business casual attire” is preferred.  Please avoid shorts, gym clothes, old sneakers, caps or hats, headphones, t-shirts, ripped jeans, clothing with logos.

Reasonable Accommodation:
I am committed to providing reasonable accommodation to students with disabilities. Any student who has a disability that may prevent him or her from fully demonstrating his or her abilities should contact me personally so we can discuss accommodations necessary to ensure full participation and to maximize educational opportunities. For more information contact The Center for Student Accessibility in Namm Hall N-108 or call the Program Manager John Reid Currie at (718)260-5143

Works Cited
Sifferlin, A. (2013). The Most Stressed-Out Generation? Young Adults. Time Magazine. Retrieved from:
Gilson, D. (2011). Overworked America: 12 Charts That Will Make Your Blood Boil. Mother Jones. July/August. Retrieved from: