COLLEGE OF SOUTHERN NEVADA
SPRING 2015 SYLLABUS
Instructor: Yelena Bailey-Kirby Office: 246 U (K-Building)
Course Time/Day: See Syllabus Schedule/Deadlines Office Phone: 702-651-5617
Classroom: ONLINE IN CANVAS Office Hours: 3:00-4:00 P.M. (M/W)
E-mail: 11:00 A.M. – 12:30 P.M. (T/TH)
My Website: FEATUREDARTISTNETWORK.COM Creative Writing Club Meetings: 4 p.m.
(1st & 3rd Thurs of each month/E-mail instructor for location.)
(Please contact me at least a day in advance if you want to make an appointment outside of office hours, and I will be more I will be more than happy to help you.)
(Note: This course syllabus and schedule is tentative. Adjustments may be made to the syllabus at my discretion and other guidelines will be announced for specific assignments.)
- COURSE DESCRIPTION: The study of poetry writing methods and forms with concentration on the student’s creative writing.
- COURSE OUTCOMES:
- Students will demonstrate knowledge of language usage in poem construction;
- Students will apply various elements of theme, structure, figurative language, and persona in their own poems;
- Creativity and critical thinking skills will be enhanced through writing in prose and poetry;
- Editing and communication skills will be developed through peer group collaboration and individual written and/or oral presentations.
- TEXT: You will have one textbook for this class: In the Palm of Your Hand: The Poet’s Portable Workshop by Steve Kowit. However, your instructor will supply you with copies of supplemental reading throughout the semester with handouts and/or online links on her website.
Kowit, Steve. In the Palm of Your Hand: The Poet’s Portable Workshop. Gardiner, ME: Tilbury House
Publishers, 2007. Print.
- MATERIALS: A pen, USB/flash drive, loose leaf paper, pocket stapler, pocket dictionary, an active e-mail address, and a binder with four dividers (or a folder on your laptop/computer with four sub-folders within this main folder just for this course on your computer) to help keep you organized. In order to stay organized, you will have the following sections:
- Section one will hold your class syllabus and other helpful material/resources.
- Section two will hold your pre-writing, group work, writing activities, exercises, and workshop material, etc.
- Section three will hold your writing assignment guidelines.
- Section four will hold drafts of your poetry as well as the midterm and final portfolio.
(NOTE: I am required to put the following statement for all courses in my syllabus even an online course: If you want to use a recording device, Nevada State Law prohibits recording classes without the instructor's permission. Moreover, the Board of Regents Handbook supports this law, so if you want to record any class, you need to get my permission before recording any class session.)
- CANVAS – CSN’S LEARNING MANAGEMENT SYSTEM: CSN uses a learning management system called Canvas. Students will log into it to access online courses and course materials. Directions to Log into your courses are as follows:
- Once the spring 2014 semester begins, you will continue to login to the CSN Online Campus as you normally would be going to
- Once logged in, you will see the standard list of all the courses in which you are enrolled. Please go to for more information on CANVAS, including training guides and login info.
- Once you are acquainted with the CANVAS menu and e-mail features, look for “ASSIGNMENTS” for each assignment’s drop box and make sure to submit work in the specific drop box to each assignment.
(Note: An Assignment DROP BOX opens at noon on Fridays and closes on the due date right before class begins. The due dates/times are labeled clearly in Canvas for each Assignment’s drop box, so please make sure to submit your work on time.)
- STUDENT REFUND POLICY: Note the CSN refund policy for course withdrawal below.
100% withdrawal first week of instruction
50% withdrawal before the end of the 2nd week of instruction; and
No refund after the start of the third week or for application or admissions.
More information is available at including information about short-term class refunds.
(NOTE: As of spring 2014, CSN students are no longer able to register after the semester begins. CSN students will be able to register until 11:59 p.m. the day before the semester begins. More info at .)
- STUDENT ACADEMIC WARNING/PROBATION/SUSPENSION POLICY: If students’ cumulative GPA falls to 2.0 or lower after attempting at least 12 credits, they will receive an academic warning, so that they have time to seek help. Continued performance at 2.0 or lower in future semester course work can lead to academic probation or academic suspension. Students on academic suspension will not be able to enroll in classes for a semester. More information is available at
- COUNSELING/ADVISING CHANGES:If you are a new student or have no declared major, you will meet with a CSN success coach for all your advising needs, including course planning and career exploration services. Success coaches are located in student services areas and their contact information is available at If you are a student who has declared a major, CSN has assigned you a counselor who is an expert on your declared major and can help you effectively navigate your program. This counselor’s office is located in the academic school (i.e. the School of Arts & Letters) in which your declared major resides. To find out whom your counselor is and make an appointment, go to or contact the CSN Call Center at 702-651-5555.
- ATTENDANCE: Attendance is mandatory, so you are only permitted THREE absences when a class meets once a week before you automatically fail the course when you exceed this amount of absences for a classroom setting that meets on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday. However, with an online course, the standards are similar to a ground class except we are not meeting physically in a classroom setting. For example, if you have not been logging into Canvas each week, and have already missed more than three weeks, have fallen behind in your work because you have failed to post on the online discussion thread and/or have not submitted work in the drop box during those absences, you can automatically fail the course because there is no make-up of work.
Keeping this in mind for the online class, the drop box will open every Friday at noon and close every Wednesday at noon, and likewise, the online discussion thread will also open on Friday’s at noon and close every Wednesday at noon.
- It would benefit you and your peers if you posted your response on the online thread’s discussion between Friday and Sunday, so you give everyone a chance between the weekend and Wednesday to respond to your posting. If you wait until Wednesday until the last minute before noon, the timer will shut the discussion thread, and no one will have a chance to provide their response as the requirement for participation.
- As you can see, you have several days to submit your work, so be aware, weekly assignments like poems are always due by Wednesday, but you can always submit it early as soon as the drop box opens on Friday.
- In addition, you must provide workshop feedback for your peer’s poems. For instance, if students submit their poem on Wednesday, January 28th, you will need to go to the drop box when it reopens on Friday, January 20th; read the peers’ poems assigned to your team; and post your typed workshop feedback in the comment box or attached your feedback as a Word document to your peer by the following week on Wednesday, February 4th by noon.
- Do not be late or you will receive an automatic late grade of (F/55%) or zero if you do not submit it at all! It is important to log into Canvas every week and stay on track with the schedule/deadlines.
When you are going to be “absent” or, in other words, cannot login to submit work because you are ill, hospitalized, and/or out of town for a funeral, you should e-mail the instructor at or leave a message on her voice-mail at 702-651-5617, so you don’t fall behind on assignments or receiving important notes. It is your responsibility to get in contact with your instructor when you have an emergency that prevents you from submitting work in the drop box every week and/or posting on the online thread every week. Do not make excuses, but try to communicate at least within twenty-four hours of your “absence” because it is crucial to keep communication open in an online course. Also, if you have a valid excuse for “missing”this online course, you need written proof, such as a doctor’s note, or there are no make-ups of assignments. Otherwise, excessive absences may result in withdrawal or failure of the course.
You are permitted up to THREE absences for the entire semester, but once you exceed these THREE absences, you are subject to failing the course (Grade: F).
Excessive absences may lead to failure of the course; however, if a medical emergency is supported by written proof from a doctor/hospital, a student will be permitted to make-up a poem, for instance, but you are still counted absent, and not excused for missing class. If you need to be absent for most of the semester, you should withdraw from the course and take it when you can attend class and submit work on time.
Although you are allowed to have up to THREE absences, your work must still be submitted as an e-mail attachment on due dates with an explanation to your instructor about your absence or dropped off in her mailbox in 246 (K-building) with a brief note on the due date unless it’s a medical emergency and you are making other arrangements with your instructor. Hence, you must submit your work on due dates if your absence isn’t supported by a doctor’s note because there are no make-ups of quizzes, journals, and other writing assignments when you miss class.
Extensions are only given to students who have medical emergencies. If a student requests an extension, it must be due to a major medical emergency (i.e. surgery, hospitalization, etc). Otherwise, students will not be given extensions for other reasons because they procrastinated or other excuses. You are adults now, so you need to stay on schedule, be responsible, and stay organized if you want to succeed in this course. You need to make the choice and commitment to have a strong work ethic because the course does have a great deal of reading and writing assignments.
If you know that you will be absent because you are taking a personal day off (by taking a family vacation, getting married and going on your honeymoon, celebrating your birthday, changing your work schedule/shift, court date, etc.), you need to alert me as soon as possible in writing via e-mail and you must submit the assignment beforehand. There are no extensions for these personal days/events because they ARE NOT a medical emergency or death in the family. If you want to avoid being penalized on assignments, then you need to let me know in advance, so I can record/document it and schedule a time for you to take a quiz early or submit a poem early because your instructor will not allow you to submit it late for a personal day or just because you changed your work schedule.
Moreover, students cannot take liberties to miss more than one class period for a funeral. You may take one day to mourn or attend a funeral if it local in Nevada. However, if the funeral is out of state, you are permitted up to three days to attend the wake and funeral, but if you need to be absent for several weeks in a row, and it results in missing most of the semester as well as assignments/quizzes because the death has taken its toll on you, you will need to withdraw from the course and speak to a CSN counselor.
Finally, you need written proof like a death certificate, obituary announcement in the newspaper, and/or funeral program, etc. Too many students have been dishonest about the death of a family member, so you need written proof, and you will be allowed to make-up the work for this one day. It doesn’t give you permission or an excuse to not submit work or be late for the rest of the semester. You should submit the work by the next class meeting if you missed the day to attend the funeral and stay on track with the assignments.
- E-MAILING INSTRUCTOR/LEAVING HER A VOICE-MAIL: It is important that you contact your instructor if you have a question or will be absent. Foremost, you should be clear by identifying your first and last name as well as the English course/section in an e-mail and/or voice-mail message. Also, you need to leave a phone number with area code, so the instructor can return your call, especially if you have an emergency situation, or in case, the e-mail bounces back. Finally, you should briefly explain your situation or any questions that you have. It is your responsibility to contact the instructor and keep the communication open.
For example, if you have a death in the family or a medical emergency, you should not disappear for several weeks and then make excuses for falling behind. Instead, you (or in case, you are hospitalized or can’t call yourself, a family member/friend) should contact the instructor immediately and make arrangements for the days/weeks that you will be absent, so the instructor can work with you and accommodate you under the circumstances. Do not make excuses that you couldn’t contact me because I can be reached by phone, e-mail, or in person if someone wants to stop by my office. It’s as simple as the following examples.
SUBJECT: Missing class today
I will need to miss class today because I have a doctor’s appointment, so I have attached today’s journal assignment with this e-mail, and I will provide you with a note from the doctor during our next class. Please let me know that you have received the attachment.
ENG 220 on Wed at 6:00 p.m.
Cell: (000) 555-5555
Example Leaving a Voice-mail:
Hi Professor! This Is Mary Smith in the ENG 220 on Wednesdays at 6:00 p.m., and I will need to miss class today because I have a doctor’s appointment. If I’ve missed any work, please call me at (555) 555-5555. Thank you!
(NOTE: Your instructor will try to contact you via e-mail or phone within forty-eight hours of receiving your message during weekdays [Mon-Fri] between the hours of 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.; however, your instructor does not access the internet on weekends. Hence, if you write or phone her on the weekend [Sat-Sun], she will respond to you on Monday.)
- PARTICIPATION: You must participate in and contribute to classroom workshops, discussions, and other assigned activities online or in a classroom setting. In the case of a borderline grade, participation may be a determining factor. To attend class and merely be physically present does not constitute participation, or to access your online Canvas weekly but not post in the discussion thread or provide feedback for workshops, does not constitute participation. You should be actively participating by critically thinking, analyzing, and interpreting the reading and then verbally responding to classroom and/or online discussions or other exercises.
(Note: For a classroom setting, please raise your hand when you want to speak; do not blurt out answers or interrupt classmates when they are speaking; and show others the same respect that you deserve to have when you are speaking. Furthermore, when the instructor is giving directions or speaking, students should be listening and not chatting with their neighbor. It is rude and disrespectful to your instructor as well as to your peers who may be writing down directions, specific requirements of an assignment, or answers to their queries. Otherwise, for the online courses, you should still show your peers respect when posting a response to an online thread.)
- STUDENT CONDUCT: CSN is committed to maintaining a positive learning environment for its students and a positive working environment for its faculty and staff. Disruptive or abusive conduct will not be tolerated at CSN, and the faculty will follow the procedures for dealing with disruptive and abusive conduct. Therefore, students should familiarize themselves with the CSN policy and procedure on student conduct by reading the following links:
Your instructor intends to treat you with respect and fairness, and if you leave your manners at home, you will be asked to meet with the instructor in person to adjust your behavior if you want to remain in the course because your behavior has been disruptive and inconsiderate. She expects you to bring your manners and treat everyone with respect online or in a ground classroom. Moreover, if a student continues to be disruptive or be disrespectful with repeat offenses, you can be removed from the class and sent to meet with my Department Chair. We will discuss some core values during the first week and establish an environment of mutual respect for everyone.