Grading Policy

Your Grade will be based on your work during laboratory (see details of this below)(30%), examinations (best three of four) (30%), quizzes (best five) (20%), the course final exam / exit exam (15%) and class participation & homework (5%). You must score at least 17/30 on the exit exam to receive a C or better in the course.

Details of Laboratory Grading
ComponentPercentage
Laboratory is worth 30% of the overall grade in this course. The breakdown of the laboratory grade is as follows:
Laboratory Notebook50%
Laboratory Activites (models)10%
Formal Laboratory Report20%
Laboratory Performance20%
Grading Scale
Letter GradePercentage
A90%
B80%
C70%
D60%
Fbelow 60%
I*Incomplete
ADW**Administrative Withdrawal
NSW***No Show Withdrawal

*I (Incomplete) is a non-grade received by students who have actively pursued the course and are doing passing work at the end of the course, but who have not completed the course's final examination and/or other specific course assignments.

**ADW (Administrative Withdrawal) is given to any student who is not actively pursuing the course objectives will be administratively withdrawn from the course at mid-term. An ADW will be given if a student does not complete at least 70% of all assignments; homework, exams, laboratories, quizzes due prior to mid-term by the mid-term date. Since make up work is NOT permitted this means that attendance is extremely important and excessive absences will most likely result in an ADW.

***NSW (No Show Withdrawal) is given to any student who misses the first two classes and does not discuss with me the circumstances of these absenses will be given an NSW after the second class. A student who attends the first class and then fails to attend the next two classes and fails to discuss with me the circumstances of these absences will be given an NSW. Any student who misses more than half of the classes in the first two weeks of the term will also be given an NSW if we do not discuss the circumstances of these absences. In my discussion with you I will determine if it is feasible for you to sucessfully pursue the course objectives under whatever circumstances are causing you to miss class. Your success is very important to me and I know, from years of experience, that your success depends on your commitment and ability to attend the class and participate in all activities.

General Policies

Please read the general policies carefully. Failure to follow these policies will be reflected in the class participation portion of your grade.

Active Pursuit

Active Pursuit is defined as consistent attendance, communication with the instructor in person or by email about any absences, compliance with all policies, completion of assignments on time, commuincation with the instructor about any difficulties completing assignments on time, participating in class, taking quizzes and exams and performing laboratory experiments as assigned. Any student who misses two consecutive classes is at risk for being considered as not actively pursuing the class. The best strategy to handle any unforseen circumstances is to communicate as soon as possible with the instructor.

Make-Up Policy

Make-Up work is not permitted under any circumstances. This includes but is not limited to hospitalization, deaths in the family, illness, family emergencies. Life happens to everyone. This is why some quizzes and one exam are dropped from your grade with no penalties.

If circumstances arise that prevent you from actively participating in all aspects of this course please let me know. There is no substitute for attending classes regularly and on time. Please choose someone else in the class that will be able to exchange notes with you in the event either of you misses class. You are responsible for all missed announcements, assignments and class work. Please do not use the phrase "I didn't know" to excuse any missed work. Check the website often. Announcements and assignments are posted and updated regularly.

Success in the Laboratory

Laboratory Work: You are expected to maintain a detailed laboratory notebook with observations, data, analysis and discussion of each demonstration and experiment. All data entries should be made in ink NOT pencil while you are in class. You will also be required to write a formal laboratory report for one of the experiments.

Preparation: Laboratory handouts are on the website. You will need to print copies of these for yourself. Please prepare for laboratory work ahead of time by carefully reading all instructions and taking notes in your laboratory notebook.

Atire: Please do NOT wear sandals or shorts to class. We carry out demonstrations and laboratory activities frequently. Some of my past students have elected to carry a second pair of shoes so that they could wear sandals for the rest of the day. That's fine. This rule is for your safety and you will NOT be permitted to carry out laboratory activities if you are not properly dressed.

Methods of Assessment

During the first week of class students are given a knowledge probe assessment to determine how well they are prepared to take the course and their current knowledge of major course concepts. Throughout the course students will participate in a variety of assessment activities, quick questions on index cards, problem recognition tasks, opinion polls, skill drills, and common misconceptions assessment.

Academic Integrity

There will be no tolerance for violations of academic integrity (e.g. plagiarism, cheating of any kind). Any violation will result in an "F" for the course.