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Essential Objectives

Course Syllabus

Revision Date: 18-Dec-22

Spring 2023 | INT-1050-VG01 - Dimensions of Self & Society

In Person Class

Standard courses meet in person at CCV centers, typically once each week for the duration of the semester.

Location: Bennington
Credits: 3 (45 hours)
Day/Times: Tuesday, 06:00P - 08:45P
Semester Dates: 01-24-2023 to 05-02-2023
Last day to drop without a grade: 02-12-2023 - Refund Policy
Last day to withdraw (W grade): 03-26-2023 - Refund Policy
This course has started, please contact the offering academic center about registration


Elizabeth McHale
View Faculty Credentials
View Faculty Statement
Hiring Coordinator for this course: Collin Lee

Course Description

In this interdisciplinary first-semester seminar, students make the transition to college-level academic culture. This seminar is designed to help students develop the learning skills and habits of success that will support them throughout their college experience and as they consider career pathways. Reading, writing, and discussion (both in class and online) are central to developing an understanding of academic and societal responsibility. Students will start by analyzing personal beliefs and styles of thinking and then begin to look at how others and society view core concepts such as power, dissent, alienation, oppression, and freedom.

Essential Objectives

1. Interpret, analyze, and evaluate a text and its sources.
2. Demonstrate foundational information literacy, research skills, and academic honesty necessary for academic writing.
3. Demonstrate effective oral and written communication skills in both online and classroom settings.
4. Apply effective strategies for building new knowledge and skills through reflection on learning preferences, challenges, and goals.
5. Identify possible career goals and educational pathways.
6. Examine social issues through the lens of the individual and society.
7. Examine personal assumptions and biases, and ethical impacts of decision making and participation in society.
8. Consider issues from multiple perspectives and discuss, debate, and defend ideas with clarity and reason.

Required Technology

More information on general computer and internet recommendations is available on the CCV IT Support page. https://support.ccv.edu/general/computer-recommendations/

Please see CCV's Digital Equity Statement (pg. 45) to learn more about CCV's commitment to supporting all students access the technology they need to successfully finish their courses.

Required Textbooks and Resources

*** This is a low cost ($50 or less) textbook or resource class ***

INT-1050-VG01 Link to Textbooks/Resources Information for this course in eCampus.

The last day to use a Financial Aid Advance to purchase textbooks/books is the 3rd Tuesday of the semester. See your financial aid counselor at your academic center if you have any questions.


This course will rely heavily on experiential learning, which is learning by doing. To this end, general teaching methods may include:

· Course "reading" materials that are presented in a wide variety of formats: articles and essays, informative and thought-provoking videos, audio programs, virtual museums, etc.

· Weekly online activities that will prompt you to engage in meaningful experiences meant to inspire self-reflection and skills-building.

· Fun and challenging projects that grant you the freedom and flexibility to pursue your own interests within clearly defined instructions and expectations that give you the chance to apply your academic learning to your real life.

Discussion Forums

Each week, students will participate in discussions on the texts (which include readings and film clips).

In your original response, provide the following:

1. a demonstration of critical thinking.

2. specific references to the reading.

3. proper English written in complete and coherent sentences.

Plan to revisit the discussion forum to respond to the discussion at least two times after Wednesday, up until Sunday night (midnight). In responding to other students (and me), your posts should contribute to and further the discussion.

In your two weekly responses to others, use 3CsQ:

1. Compliment—Start off positive. Compliment the person on something specific.

2. Comment—Comment on something relevant and meaningful that the person wrote. Be specific! Remember your comment might not always be agreement. You can “politely” disagree.

3. Connection—Connect with something the person wrote. Explain your connection with details giving your audience a clear idea of what you’re talking about.

4. Question—Ask a specific question about something written or the writer. Keep the conversation going.

Evaluation Criteria

20% - Participation in weekly discussion

20% - Career Exploration Project

20% - Presentations

20% - Weekly Assignments

20% - Essays

Students must take responsibility for actively engaging with ideas and peers.

20% Participation in weekly discussions

Students should be submitting initial post and follow ups according to the timeline indicated. Posts must be well written and contribute to or move forward the overall group discussion. Each week students are required to respond first within three days and then respond to two peers with substance before the next class meeting.

Each discussion closes when the next week’s discussion opens.

Sources should only be used when directions allow for it, and sources must always be documented.

20% Career Exploration Project (CCV Focus Activities)

The assignment link will give you a worksheet. However, you must present your findings in essay form. This will take no fewer than four pages.

20% Presentations

Students will complete two oral presentations. In the presentation, the student will “teach” the rest of us about a topic or issue, which will be assigned. Presentations must be at least four minutes.

20% Weekly Assignments (other than essays)

Students will have assignments in addition to discussion and essays. There may be graphic organizers or drawings related to readings and concepts. All assignments will be explained fully in that week's module.

20% Essays

There will be essays over the course of the semester (plus the Career Exploration Project). Each essay assignment will have its own rubric.

Revision Policy: All formal writing assignments may be revised for a higher grade if they receive a grade of C or lower. If you do a revision, remember to

· Turn in the original with the revision

· Consider using Tutor.com (available through Canvas)

· Make substantial improvements to the original

· Extend the ideas in the original

Important Note About Evaluation Criteria: I will make every effort to help you not only succeed in this class but also to excel. If something doesn’t make sense, if you are ever feeling overwhelmed by this class or events in your life, or if you are unable to log in and meet your deadlines for a particular week, contact me via email. Never hesitate to email if you need help.

You must complete all the formal writing assignments to pass this class. Let me know if you have any questions.

Grading Criteria

CCV Letter Grades as outlined in the Evaluation System Policy are assigned according to the following chart:

A Less than 9893
A-Less than 9390
B+Less than 9088
B Less than 8883
B-Less than 8380
C+Less than 8078
C Less than 7873
C-Less than 7370
D+Less than 7068
D Less than 6863
D-Less than 6360
FLess than 60 
NPLess than 600

Weekly Schedule

Week/ModuleTopic  Readings  Assignments


Introduction to the Course

Habits of Success

Metacognition, Learning Styles, and Multiple Intelligences


Bloom's Taxonomy of Knowledge

Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs

Short film: Butterfly Circus


Discussion: Introduce Yourself

Discussion: "Claiming Your Education"

Write letter to instructor.



Liberated Education vs. Banking Method (Freire)


Pedagogy of the Oppressed, Paulo Freire, chapter 2

"Indian Education" by Sherman Alexie


First essay: Educational Autobiography



What is Truth? How do we know what we know?


Plato's "Allegory of the Cave"


Build a three-dimensional model of a personal cave

Watch the Matrix and generate a graphic organizer



Career Planning

Universal Human Rights


The UN Declaration of Human Rights

"Focus" activities on CCV.edu


Discussion on Human Rights

Career Exploration Project



Racism and Bias

Construction of Whiteness


"Shining the Light on White" (vpr.org)


Reflection on bias

One-week bias cleanse



Mental Health


"The Yellow Wallpaper" by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

"The Madness Equation" by Mary Spalding


Definition essay: what is mental health to you?



The Covid-19 Pandemic


Media Analysis Activity



Introduction to Steppenwolf by Hermann Hesse


Steppenwolf, parts 1 and 2

Europe in the 1920s


Discussion: Surrealism Art Gallery



The Self and Multiple Identities


Steppenwolf, part 3


Discussion: Theories of Self



The Search for Meaning

Carl Jung and his influence on Hermann Hesse


Steppenwolf, parts 4 and 5

Articles about Carl Jung's ideas


Discussion: Myers-Briggs Type Indicator



The Alter Ego



Steppenwolf, part 6



Essay on individuation



Humor and the complex nature of laughter in Steppenwolf


Don Quixote

Steppenwolf, part 7 and 8



Introduction to the Lyric Essay (final assignment, due last class)





Steppenwolf, part 9

Magic Butterfly


Final essay: The Lyric Essay, due last class



The Magic Theater--adapting a theatrical activity

Take Aways from the Novel



Sample Lyric Essays


Finalize the Lyric Essay



Take aways from the semester

Virtual Magic Theater



Various sample lyric essays


Attendance Policy

Regular attendance and participation in classes are essential for success in and are completion requirements for courses at CCV. A student's failure to meet attendance requirements as specified in course descriptions will normally result in a non-satisfactory grade.

  • In general, missing more than 20% of a course due to absences, lateness or early departures may jeopardize a student's ability to earn a satisfactory final grade.
  • Attending an on-ground or synchronous course means a student appeared in the live classroom for at least a meaningful portion of a given class meeting. Attending an online course means a student posted a discussion forum response, completed a quiz or attempted some other academically required activity. Simply viewing a course item or module does not count as attendance.
  • Meeting the minimum attendance requirement for a course does not mean a student has satisfied the academic requirements for participation, which require students to go above and beyond simply attending a portion of the class. Faculty members will individually determine what constitutes participation in each course they teach and explain in their course descriptions how participation factors into a student's final grade.

Accessibility Services for Students with Disabilities:

CCV strives to mitigate barriers to course access for students with documented disabilities. To request accommodations, please
  1. Provide disability documentation to the Accessibility Coordinator at your academic center. https://ccv.edu/discover-resources/students-with-disabilities/
  2. Request an appointment to meet with accessibility coordinator to discuss your request and create an accommodation plan.
  3. Once created, students will share the accommodation plan with faculty. Please note, faculty cannot make disability accommodations outside of this process.

Academic Integrity

CCV has a commitment to honesty and excellence in academic work and expects the same from all students. Academic dishonesty, or cheating, can occur whenever you present -as your own work- something that you did not do. You can also be guilty of cheating if you help someone else cheat. Being unaware of what constitutes academic dishonesty (such as knowing what plagiarism is) does not absolve a student of the responsibility to be honest in his/her academic work. Academic dishonesty is taken very seriously and may lead to dismissal from the College.