English 103 Course Overview:

English 103 is a three-unit course that fulfills the General Education Requirement for English Writing (A-2). In CI's New G.E. Goals and Outcomes, the course is aligned with Outcome 4.2 (Written Communication). As stated in the University Catalog, a minimum grade of C- is required to successfully fulfill the G.E. requirements for English Writing.

Class Activities

Be prepared to do something when you come to class. This class is not lecture based, but activity based. Most class sessions will consist of multiple activities, some involving the whole class, other times group work, and often individual work. All of these activities will help you become a better thinker and writer, which is critical to your future success. If you don’t attend class or are not prepared for class, you miss out on your opportunity to improve in the skills you need for your future.

Clifton Justice.JPG

Dr. Clifton Justice

Welcome! As you settle into our class, please understand that regular and effective communication between you and me is essential to your success as a learner. Remember, I am not with you throughout most of your learning experience and, therefore, will be unaware of many of your challenges and struggles unless you bring them to my attention. As a university student, you must take accountability for your learning and understand how to effectively communicate with me. I look forward to learning with you!

Course Goals

1. Critical Thinking: Students will achieve the following:

  • an ability to analyze written work;
  • an ability to frame conclusions from a range of information;
  • an ability to predict outcomes based on known information.

2. Communication Skills: Students will achieve the following:

  • an ability to more clearly and more effectively write academic papers;
  • an ability to effectively and convincingly verbalize their ideas;
  • an ability to work collaboratively in group processes.

3. Research Skills: Students will gain the following:

  • a familiarity with CI library resources;
  • a familiarity with major data bases;
  • a proficiency with basic computing skills;
  • an ability to discern valid research conclusions;
  • ability to design, conduct and defend a research project.

4. Self Development: Students will develop

an ability to cogently reflect on roles of learning on personal and intellectual growth.

Communication Policy

Email: clifton.justice@csuci.edu
Cell Phone: 818/458/3682
Office: BT 1139 but office hours are held in Broome 2680
Office Hours: Tuesday - Thursday, 8:30 - 9 @ Broome 2680

  • Alternate appointment times, including virtual appointments, can be arranged by contacting the professor.
  • Email is the preferred and quickest way to reach me, but I may be reached through my phone, if it is an emergency.
  • I agree to respond to your inquiries within 24 hours during the week (Mon-Fri). I take breaks on the weekend. :) While I may respond quickly on the weekend too, it is not guaranteed.
  • If you don't hear from me within 24 hours, assume I didn't receive your message (issues do occur with technology!) and contact me again.

Principles of Learning

  • You will learn only as much, or little, as you choose to learn.
  • Each of you has a unique learning style, so not every assignment will appeal to everyone--but the variety should provide you with a chance to show what you're capable of doing.
  • The more often you collaborate with your classmates--in discussion, in study groups, on papers--the richer the experience will be for you.
  • Writing, you will discover, is always a collaborative process.
  • You will teach yourself more than I teach you.
  • You will learn more from each other than you do from me.
  • All of you are capable of succeeding in this class; my job is to help you succeed.


  • Students begin work immediately on college-level research and writing;
  • Students move quickly from study of their own processes to the development of finished products;
  • Students complete two writing projects, involving research and documentation of sources, as well as additional assignments;
  • Students work on multiple writing projects at the same time.


  • Laptop computer/Tablet;
  • Writing and reading assignments, both in and out of class;
  • Collaborative work with other students;
  • Documentation of sources. This class uses MLA documentation;
  • Campus email.
  • Internet access.


  • All readings are available through the professor's CIKeys site; you will not need to purchase any books.
  • Additionally, readings for projects are linked on project pages.
  • Reading the class material is critical to your success in this class.
  • Each week read the weekly agenda and perform the activities/writing for that week.

Technical Support

  • If you run into technical problems in this course, you should try the following:
  • Clear your browser’s cache.
  • Try a different browser (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari or Chrome).
  • Shut down and restart your computer.
  • Contact the University Help desk helpdesk@csuci.edu or 805/437/8552.



  • All students are expected to abide by the University Policy on Class Attendance. This important policy includes the statement that students “are expected to attend class regularly” and outlines student responsibilities in communicating with the instructor in the event of an absence. Students must notify instructors, in advance whenever reasonably possible, about any missed classes. According to the catalog, "It is the responsibility of the student to give advance notification, contact the instructor … [and] submit assignments on time.”
  • Missing more than two weeks of class will prohibit you from submitting a final portfolio, which will result in your failing the course. For extenuating circumstances related to a medical condition or disability, please refer to the Disabilities Statement.
  • Two weeks of class = two class meetings for courses that meet once a week.
  • During the first three weeks of the semester, faculty may drop students for “failure to attend class without having made prior arrangements with the instructor.” I will enforce this policy.
  • It is imperative that you arrive to class on time and plan to stay for the duration of the class period. Repeatedly arriving late or leaving class early will be counted as unexcused absences.
  • First-year university students are susceptible to many viruses. If you have a prolonged illness that prohibits you from being in contact with others, the most important single thing you can do to maintain good standing in the class is to communicate with your professor.


  • All work that students submit as their own work must, in fact, be their own work.
  • If your writing presents ideas or information from other sources, it must clearly indicate the source, whether it is in the form of a quote or a paraphrase.
  • Word-for-word language taken from other sources—books, papers, web sites, interviews, conversations, etc.—must be placed in quotation marks and the source identified.
  • Paraphrased material must be cited.
  • In accordance with the CSU Channel Islands Honor Code policy, students who knowingly plagiarize ideas or language will fail the course.
  • You are encouraged to consult with the instructor if you have questions about what might constitute an act of plagiarism or cheating.


Classroom Conduct

Respect for the rights of others seeking to learn and for the general goals of academic freedom must be maintained. Differences of viewpoint or concerns should be expressed in terms that show respect even in dissent. Student conduct that disrupts the learning process will not be tolerated.

Completing Assignments

  • Each week you must complete the homework activities listed on the weekly agenda.
  • All homework/draft assignments must be submitted electronically in CI Docs.
  • All homework/drafts are due 24 hours prior to our class meeting. For example, if your class meets Tuesday at 9 AM, your homework is due Monday at 9 AM.
  • Late homework assignments will negatively impact your grade, including the possibility of failing the course.

Disabilities Statement

If you are a qualified student with a disability who will require reasonable accommodations in this course, please register with Disability Resource Programs located in the Educational Access Center, Bell Tower 1541, or call 805/437/3331 for assistance with developing a plan to address your academic needs. Faculty, students and Disability Resource Programs will work together regarding classroom accommodations. Any requests for course modification, including those related to assignments and/or deadlines, shall be addressed through this process. Students should discuss any approved accommodations with faculty. All requests for accommodations require appropriate advance notice to avoid a delay in services.

Online Etiquette

  • The technologies we will work with in this class are amazing tools but can also present frustrations from time time. Please maintain a sense of humor and patience when working with these tools. Learning to deal gracefully with the unexpected is a valuable skill you can gain in this course.
  • Phones should be stowed away during F2F meetings unless we are using phones as a tool in our activities. Your full attention will help us make the most of our time together.
  • Please refrain from texting, social media, and other distracting activities when others are taking the time to work with you.
  • You will be using a computer, laptop, or tablet when we are meeting face to face. Just be sure to avoid the habit of drifting over to Facebook, Minecraft, or Instagram, etc. during those times.
  • Always ask for help when you need it, and please assist others when possible. You will be amazed by what you can learn when you help teach someone else.
  • Sharing our thoughts and ideas online requires trust of our fellow community members. Please treat the contributions of others with respect.

University Writing and Multiliteracy Center

Successful writers get feedback from other writers. And while feedback from a professor can be helpful, it can also be intimidating. Peer tutors are available to meet with you in the University Writing Center, Broome Library 2675. Writing and Multiliteracy Center tutors receive special training in order to help you work on your papers at any stage in the writing process. Call 805/437/8409 for appointments or click the link below.


Basic Needs Security

Any student who faces challenges securing their food or housing and believes this may affect their performance in the course is urged to contact CI Student Emergency Intervention & Basic Needs Program for support. Furthermore, please notify the professor if you are comfortable in doing so. Doing so will enable him to provide any resources that he may possess.


Midterm Portfolio

If your professor approves of your course work, you will submit an electronic portfolio consisting of one essay during Week 6.

Required length: 1000+ words or 4 full pages, double-spaced.

The midterm portfolio, accounting for 20% of your grade, will be evaluated by the composition team (other writing instructors) using the rubric below.WRITING CRITERIA IN THE FIRST YEAR WRITING PROGRAM AT CI.

Final Portfolio

If your professor approves of your course work, you will submit an electronic portfolio consisting of one essay during Week 14.

Required length: 1,500+ words or 6 full pages, double-spaced.

The final portfolio, accounting for 40% of your grade, will be evaluated by the composition team (other writing instructors) using the rubric below.WRITING CRITERIA IN THE FIRST YEAR WRITING PROGRAM AT CI.

Additional Coursework

Two (2) evaluations of your additional coursework will take place during the semester. These will coincide with the midterm and final portfolio evaluations.

Midterm evaluation will be worth 15% of your final grade; final evaluation will be worth 25% of your final grade.

For these evaluations, I will holistically assess your written work, ability to meet deadlines, participate in class discussions and individual conferences, and your ability to stay on task when working independently during class.

Final Grades

Final grades for the course will be A through F; at the discretion of your professor, plusses may be added to grades A – D, and minuses may be added to A – D.

Information contained in this syllabus, other than that mandated by the University, may be subject to change with advance notice, as deemed appropriate by the instructor

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