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Course Policies

These policies take effect from the first day of class, regardless of when you begin attending the course. For example, if the first time you attend class is during the second week of the semester, you will have already been marked absent from two class meetings.


CSUF expects three hours of outside work for each hour spent in the classroom. That means that you should expect to put in 7.5 hours of work each week on average. Plan to budget for 5 hours of reading and writing responses and 2.5 hours for the homework. The work for some weeks might take less time than this, but in weeks when you are working on your final project, expect to put in more time than this. If you find that the reading is taking up more time than that, come meet with me to discuss reading and study strategies.


This class has readings commensorate with other upper division history classes. All of the readings are in the course Zotero library. Six of our weeks are case study weeks. For those classes, you should treat the case study as an additional reading. The remaining weeks are lab weeks. For those weeks, readings will focus on digital practice.


Your lowest participation grade will be dropped.  In practice, this means that you are permitted one absence during the semester, and at your own discretion. There is no excused/unexcused absences policy – each of you gets to decide which class you wish to miss. More than one 0 for participation will impact your final grade. More than four 5 0s for participation will cause you to fail the course. Regardless of your reason for not participating in a class, you will be responsible for the material covered that day.


Late assignments lose 1/3 of a grade per 24 hours. E.g., a B paper submitted the morning after it was due will receive a B-. Assignments handed in more than 72 hours late will receive an F (50%). Assignments not handed in at all will receive a 0.


There is not extra credit, but many assignments have multiple parts, and it is possible to succeed in an assignment even if you miss one part.


I am happy to look at one draft per assignment, but in order to get my comments you must come to meet with me in person. I will look at drafts sent to me by MIDNIGHT ON SUNDAY before the assignment is due, and meet with you during my normal office hours during the week before the assignment is due. You are responsible for scheduling an office hours appointment.


You are expected to master the citation style that is common among historians, and which is documented in the department’s citation guidelines. This style is known as Chicago Style. The Chicago Manual of Style is available online, and in library. It is also the style modeled in A Pocket Guide to Writing History.

As we move into digital scholarship, you will find that there are not clear guidelines for citing in digital formats. We will discuss appropriate citations in class – however, a lack of clear consensus among scholars does not mean you are not required to cite. Rather, you are required to develop your own coherent system for citations.


You are responsible for having all of the readings in class. Except in the case of interactive digital projects, you should have readings in hard copy.


While computers are an essential part of this class, you are not expected to use them for non-class activities. These include, but are not limited to, e-mail, Facebook, Twitter, , Instagram, If you are caught using any of these (or engaging in other distractions) in class, you will receive a 0 for that day.

This also goes for mobile phones. If you have an emergency that requires you to monitor your phone, let me know. If not, your phone should remain in your bag during class.

If you are looking at digital exhibits, plan to bring a laptop or use a computer in room 528.


You must come by office hours to check in during the first few weeks of the term. You are encouraged to come by at other times as well – feel free to discuss concerns or drafts, or to ask questions about things we have covered in class. Please plan to come see me sometime during the first four weeks of class to touch base, say hello and talk over any expectations or anxieties you have about the class. While you can drop into office hours, I encourage you to check to find and reserve a time that works for you. If none of my regularly scheduled office hours fit your schedule, please e-mail to set up an alternate meeting time.

I can be reached by e-mail and Slack during normal business hours (9-5, m-f), and will generally respond to e-mails received during those hours within 24 hours of receipt. I will strive for, but cannot guarantee speedy responses outside of those times.


All course announcements and individual email are sent to your CSUF email accounts. Therefore, you MUST check your CSUF email on a regular basis (at minimum, once a day) for the duration of the course.

Discussions among students, and informal chats with me will happen on the course Slack. Therefore, you must check the Slack on a regular basis (at minimum, once a day) for the duration of the course.