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Course Number: Course Title: Palm Beach State College
Palm Beach State College
Course Syllabus – ELearning Online Class
General Class and Course Information
Course Number: POS1041
Course Title: Intro to American Government (AA)
Term/Dates: FALL 2016
Reference Number: 216748
Credit Hours: 3
Days: ONLINE
Time: ONLINE
Room: ONLINE
Course Description: This course provides a detailed study of the origin and development of America's unique
constitutional democracy and its political institutions, highlighting the federal level of government. It will include
information about the U.S. Constitution, Bill of Rights, branches of government, public policy, political ideologies,
interest groups, political parties, elections, mass media and other critical components of the political process.
Distance Learning Class Information
This course is taken completely on the Internet without attending a classroom on campus. Some courses may require
students to take examination(s) in a proctored lab setting. Before you decide to take the course via online delivery, it
is recommended that you:
Visit – http://www.palmbeachstate.edu/elearning/online
to obtain Detailed Facts & Information about
Blackboard Access
 Access to your Online Course is AVAILABLE each term on the FIRST DAY OF CLASSES
 Access to your Online Course will NOT BE AVAILABLE unless the course tuition is FULLY PAID
Blackboard Orientations
 How to Register for the Free Online Orientation Course: ELO1000
 Where/When to Attend On-Campus Orientation
Blackboard Tips & Tutorials
 How to Ensure your Computer is Compatible
 Ensure you Understand Examination and Assignment Rules
 Learn the Functions of Blackboard
Then Proceed To – https://palmbeachstate.blackboard.com
to Login to your Course (not available before the first day of class) using the same
USERNAME and PASSWORD you used to register for classes.
For Additional Information and Notices Visit – http://www.palmbeachstate.edu/elearning
Gordon Rule Class
This class has been designated as a Gordon Rule class for writing. This means that the course has significant writing
requirements. Please see the web page at:
http://www.palmbeachstate.edu/learningoutcomes/Documents/Gordon_Rule_Statement_Student.pdf
Professor’s Information
Name: Shari Maclachlan, Ph.D.
Telephone: 561-868-3337
Faculty Web Page:
http://www.palmbeachstate.edu/faculty/index.asp?id=lyess
Template Date - July 2013
Office Location: SS207 / Lake Worth Campus
Email: [email protected]
Office Hours: Mon/Wed: 8:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.
Tues/Thurs: 8:30 - 9:30 a.m., 10:45 - 11 a.m.,
12:15 - 12:30 p.m., 1:45 - 2 p.m.
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Palm Beach State College
Course Syllabus – ELearning Online Class
Information on REQUIRED Textbooks:
Title
Edition
Authors
Publisher
ISBN
PEARSON
9780133951257 (access code only)
12/E
Karen O’Connor
Larry Sabato and
Alixandra Yanus
REVEL for American Government,
2014 Elections and Updates Edition
OR
9780134600390 (access code with
loose-leaf printed book)
This is an electronic book! You may buy your access code in advance at the College bookstore or buy a subscription
directly online through “TEXTBOOK” in the course menu on the Blackboard course site. The access code is required,
and having the additional looseleaf print-out is recommended, but optional.
When you log in to the Blackboard course site and access this class, you’ll see the TEXTBOOK link in the course menu
on the left side of your screen. Click on the TEXTBOOK link and “Join Course” when you are prompted. If you’ve had a
REVEL e-textbook before, enter your username and password and click “Sign In.” If this is your first REVEL book, click
“Create an Account,” fill out all required information and “Create an Account” again at the bottom of the page.
You will then see this POS1041 class listed in your REVEL account. Click on the picture of the American Government
book. It is here that you may either enter your access code or buy it directly from the publisher.
It is strongly recommended that the student taking this course not be a novice computer user, as it is your responsibility
to learn how to and correctly use the REVEL e-textbook, the Blackboard system and all its functions required for the
class. The online orientation is mandatory and will familiarize you with how to use everything efficiently and effectively.
Course Learning Outcomes: As a result of taking this course, the student will be able to:
- Recognize the significance of the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights, their origins and historical context to the ongoing
process of U.S. society.
- Define political culture and ideology, the political process and the role of political parties, interest groups, elections,
public opinion and the media in the U.S. government system.
- Distinguish the way in which different individuals and groups behave and participate in American politics.
- Describe the importance of political and policy-making institutions, the American system of separated power and
checks and balances, and the role of state and local government in a federal system.
- Analyze U.S. national interests and domestic and foreign policy making.
- Apply the practical elements of the course to the working operations of government.
- Develop a greater awareness of the role of the citizen in the American system and become more politically aware and
active in the local and global community.
Full Course Outline - Click on the following link: Course Outlines and enter the course number (no space between the
prefix and the number).
Class Information
Online courses require exceptional self-motivation, organization, discipline, planning and studying time. The meeting of
deadlines and the ability to read and follow instructions carefully and accurately are extremely important. Be sure you
clearly understand all course requirements and policies before deciding whether this class is right for you.
Template Date - July 2013
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Palm Beach State College
Course Syllabus – ELearning Online Class
The textbook, all assignments, tests and instruction guidesheets are ONLINE. The textbook is interactive and contains
reading materials, graphics, videos and practice quizzes that will assist you in learning the material. Your class grade is
based on the points you earn from five orientation assignments, eight discussion board forums, and six (33-question
multiple choice) tests. You may also earn extra credit by submitting one or both optional research projects and by
completing the section (module) practice quizzes and chapter quizzes that are included in the REVEL e -book.
The Blackboard course site contains detailed instructions for all requirements, and most (if not all) of your questions are
answered by the additional information and guidesheets there. There is an instruction sheet for the discussion board
forums and both extra credit papers, and there are chapter study guides inside each Lesson that help you prepare for
the tests. Be sure to familiarize yourself with ALL of the online components and instructions right away.
You are expected to read all of the designated textbook chapters and complete all requirements as assigned and on
time. The course follows a precise timetable to which you must strictly adhere: All deadlines are clearly listed on the
COURSE CALENDAR, beginning on page 4 of this syllabus and throughout the course site. It is YOUR responsibility to meet
the assignment requirements and deadlines, regardless of family and job obligations, illness, computer problems or other
personal matters. Absolutely no individual exceptions are made to the policies and deadlines contained in this syllabus.
While it is expected that the basic course requirements won’t change throughout the term, if it becomes necessary to
change any assignments or due dates as listed, the professor will notify yo u as far in advance as possible, and an
announcement will be posted on the course site.
The study of government is more interesting when understood in the context of the "real world." Since the textbook alone
may not provide you with enough of this practical context, you should follow daily news headlines so that you stay aware
of current events. You should apply your knowledge of current events to the optional research projects and to your
discussion board postings. The ultimate goal of these writing assignments is to integrate current, real-life events with the
information being learned in class, and your grade will be based largely on the connections you make.
This is a college-level class, and we work in an academic environment. You are always expected to maintain proper
decorum and academic standards in the virtual classroom, demonstrating respect for the professor and fellow students.
When you send information to the course site, you must always write in your own words and use complete sentences,
proper language, grammar, punctuation and capitalization. While you are encouraged to express yourself and your
opinions, any email, discussion or assignment that you post to the course site must be professional and academically
sound. Always proofread your work, and never use acronyms, abbreviations or other chat room shortcuts, symbols and
emojis. On the course site, do not use “i” instead of “I” when referring to yourself and never send “shouting”
information or messages written entirely in capital or bold letters. Sending or posting of any inappropriate or abusive
message via any forum is reason for dismissal from the class, and failure to comply with course rules and/or recurring
discipline problems may result in dismissal from the class and/or the college.
Academic Dishonesty Policy and Penalty for Violation:
Each registered student is required to complete his or her own work independently and without the assistance of
others. Collaboration of any kind with anyone is unacceptable and considered che ating. Any information obtained from
an outside source, including the Internet, must be properly cited and referenced, even if it is paraphrased.
Academic dishonesty, including collaboration and plagiarism, will result in a zero for the assignment or exam in which
cheating has occurred. Students who cheat jeopardize their ability to earn a passing grade in this class.
Additional college policy information begins on page 7 of this syllabus.
Template Date – July 2013
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Palm Beach State College
Course Syllabus – ELearning Online Class
Assignments, Tests, Quizzes and Final Exam Schedule, with percentage/points of grade:
COURSE CALENDAR
DEADLINE
ASSIGNMENTS
Complete Mandatory Orientation and Assignments Online in Blackboard
Tuesday, August 30
Access the orientation by clicking on “Lessons” in the course menu. Read all the course
information, requirements and policies and complete five assignments on the course site in
Blackboard before 5 p.m. on August 30 to maintain your access to the class:
Orientation Discussion Forum 1: Student Introductions
Orientation Paragraph Assignment
Orientation Quiz
Access the Revel e-book and “join course”
Blackboard E-mail to Professor
Lesson 1 in Blackboard
Complete Chapter 1: American Government: Roots, Context and Culture
Wednesday, August 31
For this and all chapters, the chapter contents stays available all term, but the completion
deadline is the last date (at 11:55 p.m.) that the e-book’s section (module) and chapter quizzes
may be taken for extra credit.
Friday, September 2
Complete Chapter 2: The Constitution
Thursday, September 1
through
Tuesday, September 6
Discussion Forum 2 on the Constitution
due before 5 p.m. on September 6
Follow the Discussion Board Forums Guidesheet on the Blackboard course site.
Friday, September 9
Complete Chapter 3: The Federal System
Wednesday, September 7
through
Monday, September 12
Discussion Forum 3 on The Federal System (Federalism)
due before 5 p.m. on September 12
Tuesday, September 13
through
Thursday, September 15
First TEST on Chapters 1, 2 and 3
Test #1 will close September 15 at 11:55 p.m.
Monday, September 19
Lesson 2 in Blackboard
Complete Chapter 9: The Judiciary
Begin work on optional (extra credit) Supreme Court research paper.
Wednesday, September 21
Complete Chapter 4: Civil Liberties
Friday, September 23
Complete Chapter 5: Civil Rights
Wednesday, September 21
through
Monday, September 26
Discussion Forum 4 on Civil Liberties, Civil Rights and/or
the Role of the Courts in Constitutional Interpretation
due before 5 p.m. on September 26
Tuesday, September 27
through
Thursday, September 29
Second TEST on Chapters 9, 4 and 5
Test #2 will close September 29 at 11:55 p.m.
OPTIONAL (Extra-Credit) U.S. SUPREME COURT RESEARCH PAPER DUE
Friday, September 30
Follow the detailed guidesheet for this assignment on the Blackboard course site. Papers may
be submitted early but are not accepted after the deadline, which is September 30 at 11:55 p.m.
Monday, October 3
Template Date – July 2013
Lesson 3 in Blackboard
Complete Chapter 10: Public Opinion and Political Socialization
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Palm Beach State College
Course Syllabus – ELearning Online Class
Wednesday, October 5
Complete Chapter 11: Political Parties
Friday, October 7
Complete Chapter 14: The News Media
Wednesday, October 5
through
Monday, October 10
Discussion Forum 5 on Public Opinion, Political Socialization,
Political Parties and/or the News Media
due before 5 p.m. on October 10
Tuesday, October 11
through
Thursday, October 13
Third TEST on Chapters 10, 11 and 14
Test #3 will close October 13 at 11:55 p.m.
Monday, October 17
Lesson 4 in Blackboard
Complete Chapter 12: Elections and Voting
Wednesday, October 19
Complete Chapter 13: The Campaign Process
Friday, October 21
Complete Chapter 15: Interest Groups
Wednesday, October 19
through
Monday, October 24
Discussion Forum 6 on Elections, Campaigns, and/or Voting and/or
the Role of Interest Groups in these processes
due before 5 p.m. on October 24
Tuesday, October 25
through
Thursday, October 27
Fourth TEST on Chapters 12, 13 and 15
Test #4 will close October 27 at 11:55 p.m.
Monday, October 31
Lesson 5 in Blackboard
Complete Chapter 6: Congress
Begin work on optional (extra credit) Current Event essay.
Wednesday, November 2
through
Monday, November 7
Discussion Forum 7 on Congress
due before 5 p.m. on November 7
Wednesday, November 9
Complete Chapter 7: The Presidency
Friday, November 11
Complete Chapter 8: Executive Branch and the Federal Bureaucracy
Wednesday, November 9
through
Monday, November 14
Discussion Forum 8 on the Presidency, Executive Branch and/or Bureaucracy
due before 5 p.m. on November 14
Tuesday, November 15
through
Thursday, November 17
Fifth TEST on Chapters 6, 7 and 8
Test #5 will close November 17 at 11:55 p.m.
Tuesday, November 22
Lesson 6 in Blackboard
Complete Chapter 16: Domestic Policy
Monday, November 28
Complete Chapter 17: Economic Policy
Friday, December 2
Complete Chapter 18: Foreign and Defense Policy
Wednesday, November 30
through
Monday, December 5
Discussion Forum 9 on Domestic, Economic, Foreign and/or Defense Policy
due before 5 p.m. on December 5
Tuesday, December 6
through
Thursday, December 8
Sixth TEST on Chapters 16, 17 and 18
Test #6 will close December 8 at 11:55 p.m.
OPTIONAL (Extra-Credit) CURRENT EVENT ESSAY DUE
Friday, December 9
Template Date – July 2013
Follow the detailed guidesheet for this assignment on the Blackboard course site. Papers may
be submitted early but are not accepted after the deadline, which is December 9 at 11:55 p.m.
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Palm Beach State College
Course Syllabus – ELearning Online Class
Grading:
Each course requirement has a point value. Not counting extra credit, there is a maximum of 825 points possible:
Five Orientation Assignments (5 points each) = 25 points
Eight Discussion Board Forums (25 points each) = 200 points
Six Tests (100 points each) = 600 points
TOTAL = 825 points
For extra credit: Take the section (module) quizzes and chapter quizzes in the Revel e -book. You will earn 1 point for every 5
section (module) quizzes and 2 points for every chapter quiz you complete on time.
If you complete an extra-credit research assignment, you may earn a maximum of 35 points on each one
toward your overall total, depending on the quality of your work.
Once an assignment or test is graded, the results will post to your personal gradebook (under My Grades in the
Blackboard course menu). Test grades won’t post immediately, but AFTER the test’s available period has ended.
Grading Scale:
Letter Grade
A
B
C
D
F
P
N
S
U
Points
825 - 739
738 - 656
655 - 574
573 - 491
490 and below
-----------------------------
Percentage (if applicable)
100 - 90%
89 - 80%
79 - 70%
69 - 60%
59% and below
-----------------------------
Class Policies
Attendance: Professors are required to take attendance.
Students should log onto the Blackboard course site as often as possible, but at least twice per week. Always read all
posted ANNOUNCEMENTS and follow the course calendar on this syllabus. You should use the features that allow you to
send notifications to your phone and/or personal e-mail, and a Blackboard app is also available.
Electronic Device Use and Email Policy:
Contact the professor through the Blackboard email on the course site. The professor checks the course site daily,
including weekends and holidays, and will respond to your inquiries quickly. If you have sent a message and have not
received a reply within 24 hours, please resend your message.
Late Assignment Policy:
Late work is not accepted for credit. All work is to be submitted on time according to the course calendar on this
syllabus. In addition, each assignment is to be completed in its designated area of the Blackboard course site, and no
assignments are accepted via any other forum, including email.
Template Date – July 2013
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Palm Beach State College
Course Syllabus – ELearning Online Class
Make-up Exam Policy:
No assignments are accepted after the set deadlines, regardless of the reason. The re are absolutely no exceptions to this
policy. Plan for the possibility of last-minute emergencies by completing your work early during each assignment’s
available period.
Withdrawal Policy:
If you want to withdraw, it is your responsibility to follow college procedure for doing so before the deadline, which is
Friday, November 4. The professor does not withdraw students from the class at their request but reserves the right to
withdraw students for non-attendance.
College Policies and Web Information
Academic Dishonesty
Academic dishonesty includes the following actions, as well as other similar conduct aimed at making false representation wit h
respect to the student's academic performance:
(1) Cheating on an exam, (2) Collaborating with others on work to be presented, i f contrary to the stated rules of the course,
(3) Submitting, if contrary to the rules of the course, work previously submitted in another course, (4) Knowingly and intentionally
assisting another student in any of the above actions, including assistance i n an arrangement whereby work, classroom
performance, examination, or other activity is submitted or performed by a person other that the student under whose name the
work is submitted or performed, (5) Plagiarism.
Please refer to the Palm Beach State College Student Handbook (www.palmbeachstate.edu/current for link to the student
handbook).
Classroom Etiquette and Student Behavior Guidelines
Students will demonstrate respect for professors and fell ow students. Behavior that is disruptive to a positive learning environment
reported by the professor will result in a warning on the first instance; the second instance might result in expulsion from the course
or campus.
Computer Competency Component
Each student will, to the satisfaction of the professor, demonstrate a fundamental understanding of basic computer operations
through various professor-determined exercises and/or assignments.
Disability Support Services
Students with disabilities are advised, in compliance with federal and state laws, that accommodations and services are available
through the office of Disability Support Services (DSS). It is the student's responsibility to contact Disabled Student Serv ices Advisors
and to submit appropriate documentation prior to receiving services. Please see the website at www.palmbeachstate.edu/current
for web address for Disability Support Services.
Eating, Drinking and Smoking
Eating and drinking are confined to areas designated on the campus . Smoking is not permitted in any College building and only in
areas designated at each campus.
Final Course Grade Appeal
The evaluation of academic work is the responsibility of the faculty member/instructor. The method for assigning the final course
grade is established by the faculty member/instructor. Per Board Rule 6Hx-18-3.191, faculty/instructors shall communicate the
grading policy of the course to their students in writing. If this policy changes during the term, students should be notified of any
changes in writing. The method to determine final course grades must be given to students in a course syllabus at the beginning of
the class. Should a student have a question about a final course grade, please follow the procedures as outlined in the student
handbook: www.palmbeachstate.edu/current.
Mid-Term Grade Reporting
Within one week after the close of the mid-term grading period, mid-term grades will be made available to all students for each
class by either written notification or individual conference.
Student Responsibility Policy
When a student attends the College, s/he becomes subject to its jurisdiction. Students are expected to conduct themselves in a
responsible manner, in all areas of campus life. By enrolling, they pledge to obey the rules and regulations of the College and are
responsible for observing all College policies and procedures as published in the student hand book, the College catalog and other
Template Date – July 2013
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Palm Beach State College
Course Syllabus – ELearning Online Class
College publications. The student will be responsible for preparing for class, participating in class, and completing assign ments on
time.
Palm Beach State Websites of Interest
Please see this web page (www.palmbeachstate.edu/current) for a list of web addresses for students.
Withdrawal Policy for Individual Courses
The last day to withdraw from a College course with a "W" grade in this course is Friday, November 4. It is the responsibility of the
student to use the PantherWeb system or visit a campus Registrar’s office to withdraw. An official withdrawal entitles the student
to a grade of "W" in the class.
Distance Learning Requirements
Computer Systems
Your computer system resources must be compatible with the Learning Management System (LMS) used to deliver/manage course
content. System Check (analysis) is provided on the course login page at https://palmbeachstate.blackboard.com. Your computer
needs to be configured per recommended settings. Failure to do so generally results in test submission and other participativ e
action errors. These types of errors are generally not accepted as an excus e for missed submissions.
SLC Computer Lab
If students do not have access to a computer at home, the SLC Computer Lab at a Palm Beach State campus can be used to comple te
course assignments. Visit the SLC Computer Lab webpage at http://www.palmbeachstate.edu/slc for location and hours.
Student Computer & Learning Management System Skills
Students need to possess basic web-browsing skills and need to learn the functions of the Learning Management System (LMS).
Online video tutorials are provided for all major LMS functions and can be accessed from the online classroom or directly at
http://www.palmbeachstate.edu/elearning/resources
Course Login
Courses become accessible on the first day of class and tuition must be fully paid to obtain access. If this is your first PBSC online
course, review the Course Access Facts & Information at http://www.palmbeachstate.edu/elearning/online before attempting to
login to your course -- information on how to change your password and solving other login related issues is provided on this p age.
Login Page: https://palmbeachstate.blackboard.com
Username: Your PBSC Student ID
Password: Your PBSC Password (must be 6 characters)
Online Textbook Purchase
The textbook(s) can be purchased at the PBSC Campus Bookstore or online at http://www.efollett.com.
Online Course Assistance
For assistance, contact your:
o Professor -- with Course Instructional Content (assignment/test availability dates, course instructions, etc.) issues.
o Student Helpdesk -- with Username/Password & General Access issues. Call 561-868-4000.
o Blackboard Administrator -- for Course Availability issues. Email [email protected]
Department Contact Information
Name: Susan Caldwell
Telephone: 561-868-3339
Job Title: Associate Dean
Template Date – July 2013
Office Location: SS 101.1
Email: [email protected]
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