Course Banner: English 102 OSC. Dr. Halbert. Summer 2020.

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ENG 102 focuses on writing the college-level research paper and develops each student’s mastery of communication, information literacy, and analytic skills with emphasis placed on research and documentation methods. Students use writing, reading, listening, and observations skills to understand, organize, receive, and convey information.  Using research gleaned from diverse sources, students employ logic, reasoning, and analysis to craft effective essays.


Students must have successfully completed or tested out of REA 017 or REA 018, ESL 011 or ENG 011.


Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:
1. Address a question using an appropriate research strategy
2. Compose a coherent thesis that addresses an audience and purpose appropriate to the writing task
3. Locate and critically evaluate information from written, oral, graphic, mass media, and scholarly sources
4. Access and use information ethically and legally, employing the appropriate format and documentation
5. Integrate research into an argument
6. Draw reasonable conclusions based on research
7. Write well-edited essays that show substantial attention to organization and grammar
To address these skills goals, I have designed the course around a specific theme: horror and the monstrous in art.


My courses are designed to deal with adult issues often centering on controversial cultural and historical conflicts. At times, the class readings, lectures, and discussions may question ideas or beliefs that individual students hold dear. In addition, the language used in the course may range from highly technical jargon to the vernacular, including profanity. Students who wish to avoid such a classroom environment should seek another section of the course.


English 102 will be one of the most challenging courses of your academic career because it moves quickly, requires a wide range of academic skills, and demands more time than the average course. We will complete four major essay cycles consisting of content readings, skills readings, prewriting, drafting, peer revisions, and final drafts. A breakdown of the assignments and relative point values is as follows:

Major Research Paper

300 Points

Final drafts of major papers

200 points

MS Word Formatting Assignment


Annotated bibliographies

50 points

Individual drafts of papers (points given for in-class participation in peer review, not simply completing drafts)

5 points if completed
-5 if not

In-class essay

50 points/essay, 5 points/card

Required emails and posts

1 point if completed
-5 if not

Reading checks

5 points

Formal responses and formal peer reviews

20 points

Formal grammar revisions

50 points

Late to class

-2 points for each occurrence


1 point for each class attended
-5 points for each absence or as otherwise noted on daily assignments; 5th absence means F in course

Missed conference

-10 points

Two-minute presentation

10 points

Your grade is calculated by adding the total points earned and then dividing them by the total points possible. That average will then be plugged into the college's grading scale.

Numerical Grade 

Corresponding letter grade

Percent Equivalent




























Be advised that you must complete all major papers and in-class essays in order to pass the course. Even if your paper is too late to be accepted under the late work policies, it must be completed by the end of the semester. If it is not, then you will automatically fail for the course, regardless of what your point total is.


In order to allow students to benefit from the three-step writing process and to turn in the best possible work for evaluation, students will be permitted to revise the first graded major paper in the course for an entirely new grade provided the assignment/essay was handed in on time and without plagiarism. Late or plagiarized papers are ineligible for revision.
Note: Just turning in a revision does not guarantee you will receive a higher grade. In the event that the revised draft grade is actually lower than the original assignment, you will receive the higher of the two grades; however, a higher revision grade always replaces the original grade, so if you are prepared to work hard, your grade will most likely benefit. See the class web page for more information on the major paper rewrite. Please see the class web page's assignments section for more explicit details.


While I have an office phone, the best way to communicate with me is via email.  I am generally quick to respond, but please be advised that I may take up to 48-hours to respond during the semester (and longer during breaks).  I generally do not answer emails after 5PM because of family obligations, so 1 AM messages the night before a paper is due will normally not get a response before class.  My expectation is that you will check your email each day, particularly between the final class meeting and the posting of grades.  I will not spam the class with non-class related materials, so if you get a message from me, please consider it important and respond if needed.

Each student is responsible for checking his or her email accounts at least every other day during the semester.  During the last week of class, reading day, and the entire final exam period (until Dr. Halbert announces that final grades have been posted), students should check their email every day in order to make sure there are no issues or concerns about your grade that need to addressed.  Failure to check your email may negatively affect your grade because messages about the class generally are generally important information about assignments.


All College Policies must be followed and are a binding part of this syllabus. Of particular note are the Student Code of Conduct (which deals largely with behavior) and the Student Academic Code of Ethics (which deals academic honesty issues). You are also responsible for the Acceptable Use of Technology policy.


Plagiarism constitutes a serious breach of academic honesty and will not be tolerated. Unless I deem an act of plagiarism or cheating an honest mistake, I routinely assign students an "F" in the course for any act of academic dishonesty without the option of withdrawing from the course. Especially egregious acts will receive an "FX" with an additional notation of academic misconduct on the student's transcript. Please note that submitting work from another class as original work for this course constitutes academic dishonesty. For a full discussion of the Academic Honesty policies, please the Student Academic Code of Ethics policy.


In the interest of due process, the College provides an appeal process for a student who believes that a recorded final grade does not accurately reflect his/her academic performance in a course due to issuance of an arbitrary grade, inconsistent grading practice, or mechanical error. The policy and procedure is found at


The purpose of the Student Code of Conduct is to guide students to understand their responsibilities in regard to appropriate behavior and respect for others in the college community. The policy addresses classroom disruptions and removal from the classroom for behavioral issues.  It also provides the standards for ensuring the College provides due process to students through the judicial process. Please see the Student Code of Conduct policies and procedures for more information.


Montgomery County Community College (MCCC) welcomes qualified students with disabilities and endorses the principles of nondiscrimination and reasonable accommodation as described in Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (504) and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA). To see if you are eligible for services and reasonable accommodations in this course please review the policy on the Disabilities web site at


Regular attendance and punctuality are expected. Students may miss four class meetings and remain in the course. The fifth absence will result in either a required withdrawal from the course (before the June 9, 2022,deadline) or an automatic F in the course (after the June 9, 2022,deadline for withdrawal without a signature).  At the start of the semester, each student will receive 12 points of extra credit for attendance.  Points lost for tardiness or absences will initially be taken from this pool of points, giving students the flexibility to miss two classes without injury to their grades.  Each absence will subtract five points from a student's total points scored for the semester. Each late arrival will subtract two points from the total points scored. A point will be awarded for each class attended. If a student knows he or she will miss a class, that student should alert Dr. Halbert beforehand. Under special circumstances (usually involving a documented medical emergency or a death in the family), you may request permission to remain enrolled in the course if your absences have exceeded four, but such circumstances are rare. Attendance will be taken by sign-in sheet at the start of class: students arriving after the sign-in sheet will be marked tardy. If you arrive late, please wait until the end of class to sign the sheet. Failure to sign the sheet at all constitutes an absence. Students who leave class early must ask for permission prior to the start of class; if you leave without permission before I dismisses the class, you will be marked absent for the whole period. Good manners suggest that if you know you will miss a class meeting, you will contact me and let me know.


In the event of inclement weather or other emergency, MCCC will send a text to students who have registered for Montco’s text messaging alert. In the event that I have to cancel a class, I will email the class and post a message on Blackboard (assuming I have power at home to access the Internet). I strongly urge each of you to set up Montco’s text messaging alert on your mobile phones as well: the College will send an alert of campus-wide closings.


Students are encouraged to consult with their instructor and/or an academic advisor when initiating a Course Withdrawal. The instructor’s permission must be requested and received if requesting a withdrawal after 60% and before 75% of the course is completed. After 75% of the course is completed, students may apply for an Excused Withdrawal due to medical, catastrophic, or other circumstances beyond the student’s control. Specific dates of deadlines for this semester can be found at

Should you wish to withdraw from the course, the deadline to withdraw without my signature is June 9, 2022. If you do not formally withdrawal, you will receive an F for the course even if you stop attending. After June 9, 2022, I will not sign any withdrawal requests unless you have a documented emergency. If I have not returned the first paper by this date, I will extend the deadline until one week after that paper is returned.
The absolute last day to get my signature is June 16, 2022.  After that, all requests to withdrawal must be made directly to the Dean of Arts and Humanities.

The Student Withdraw for Military Deployment or Reassignment policy and procedure is available on the College website.

Applications for an "Incomplete" will only be entertained in cases of documented medical emergencies, incarceration, or military call-ups. Audits will not be permitted unless you start the course as an audit student and can convince me that you are willing to do all that work for no grade.


For each major paper, we will write at least two drafts.  Each draft needs to be uploaded to the Discussion Board in Blackboard with the paper both copied and pasted AND attached as a file.  One purpose of this upload is to create a backup file of your paper should your computer/storage device crash.  You will always need to bring a printout of the current draft to class. The other is so that you can read the works of others to see other approaches to the same writing task you are facing.  While stealing the words or ideas of others in the class will result in a plagiarism charge, stealing someone’s style or rhetorical moves isn’t: most strong writers at some point have looked at the works of others as guides on how to write.


For each paper, you will have a one-on-one conference with Dr. Halbert. The instructions for signing up for a conference are in the Assignments section of the class web page. For each conference, you should post a revised draft of a complete draft of your paper to the discussion board in the “Paper #X Conference Draft” forum prior to the start of the conference.  Conferences will be held online in the Virtual Classroom: after you sign up, look for an individual “room” in the Virtual Classroom with your name on it. Please be on time for your conference. Also, be prepared to wait: although I make the best effort possible to stay on schedule, sometimes conferences prior to yours can run long, and I may be as 15 minutes late if several conferences run long before yours. Your patience is appreciated. Under limited circumstances, I can schedule a face-to-face conference, but I will require you to wear a mask in my office because of my family’s health needs.


When the final draft of a major paper is due, you will need to do the following:


All work is due at the beginning of class on the day listed for the syllabus unless otherwise noted. I hate late work from students: it complicates my ability to grade or simply keep track of your work. More importantly, it devalues the efforts of your classmates who work very hard to meet their deadlines. To discourage late work, I have the following policy:

Late work will kill your grade, so don't do it. If you know ahead of time that you will not be able to complete a task, contact me for an extension. I reserve the right to make an exception to the late policy in the case of an extreme (and documentable) emergency, but that almost never happens.


Tutorial Services: Free subject-area tutoring, academic workshops, and study skills specialists are available at Blue Bell Campus’s Tutorial Services in College Hall 180, across from the Cafeteria. Tutorial Services helps students develop learning strategies based on their unique learning styles with the goal of creating successful students and independent learners.  Contact them at 215-641-6452 or log into the portal and find us online: Tutorial Services hours and services. Please note that Tutorial Services houses the Writing Center where faculty-tutors are more than happy to assist with revising papers.


As the semester unfolds, Dr. Halbert may have to adjust the syllabus due to unforeseen circumstances. Such changes will be announced in class and via Blackboard: once they are announced on Blackboard, students must update their personal copies of the syllabus/daily assignments and are to be held to the new syllabus due dates. Dr. Halbert will make every effort to not change major assignments (papers, tests, in-class essays, etc.) even when changes are needed out of respect for those folks who plan ahead, but he reserves the right to do so if no other options are available.


Any student who has difficulty accessing resources to meet their basic needs i.e. safety, food and/or stable housing and believes this may affect their performance in the course, is urged to contact


As adults, students and the instructor should know to do the following in class:


We have all had to deal with Covid19 issues since the pandemic started in 2022. If you have a Covid exposure or test positive for Covid, you need to do the following:


I enjoy teaching Composition courses: I believe they can be the most empowering classes a person can take in college because the skills you learn can help you in virtually every part of your life. I took this job to help people discover their potential: as long as you are willing to do the work, I will do everything in my power to help you not only pass the course, but to be the best writer you can be.