COM401:Writing for the Web
Corner Web

Course Information

Instructor:                  Dr. Joseph C. Schaub
Class Meetings:         Tues. 1:40pm--2:55pm, Gibbons 428
                                  also, Gibbons 212 (Mac Lab, ML)
Credits:                      3 (lecture)
Office:                       Gibbons 429
Phone:                       (410) 532-5598
Office Hours:             Weds. 9:30am—10:30am, and by appointment
Required Text:            Martha Sammons, The Internet Writer’s Handbook (TIWH)
                                                Blackboard Readings (BB)

Course Description: In this course we will explore techniques for making the transition from writing for traditional mass media to writing for on-line media.  We will combine a theoretical investigation of the fundamental differences between web and print-based presentations with practical exercises in the design of websites.  Our course work will culminate in the production of a web-based writing project.

Learning Objectives
  • To understand the differences between print and web-based writing
  • To explore the communication possibilities the Internet offers
  • To identify and evaluate the techniques for successful on-line writing
  • To use computer technology as a communication tool

Course Work:
ATTENDANCE/PARTICIPATION: Please be prepared to actively participate in every class.  We are covering a lot of material, and any lapse in attendance or participation will quickly become a problem.  You will need to take notes, ask questions, offer comments, and generally show your involvement. 

TESTS: There will be two tests (primarily objective format), which will draw from readings, discussions, handouts, and notes.

BLOG: Each student will be asked to contribute to the School’s Student Blog, which should be available when the new website goes up (10/1/07).  I would like each student to choose a week when she will be responsible for writing the blog entry.  Other students will post comments during the week.  We will have a training session on “Blogger,” and I will give more details about expectations as October approaches.

WEB PROJECT: By the end of the semester, each student will create a web-site for showcasing her writing.  The type of site the student designs will depend largely on the goals of the writing, the audience for whom it is written, and the student’s creativity.

FINAL: Scheduled for Monday, December 10, 1:30pm – 4:30pm.  We will present our Final Projects in the Mac Lab on this day.

Class Policies

Attendance: I will take attendance at the beginning of each class.  When I call your name please let me know you are here.  After two unexcused absences, your grade will begin to suffer.  An excused absence usually involves an emergency or crisis of some kind. If you must miss a class, contact a classmate to find out what you have missed.  If her notes are unclear, come see me.

Class Meetings: This class would ordinarily meet 3 times a week, however, it is assumed that much of our work will take place on-line.  Therefore we are meeting twice a week so that students will be able to spend 1 hour (at least) working on-line on assignments that will carry over from our class time.  Generally these will involve reviewing and commenting on the Blackboard Presentations.

Readings: Reading assignments are listed on the date they are due.  Please have reading assignments completed in time for the scheduled class.

Grades: No grades can be disclosed prior to the date when the registrar officially sends them out.

Cell Phones: Please turn off all cell phones during class time.


Learning Differences: 
Students who are in need of special accommodations because of a documented learning disability or physical disability must submit the appropriate documentation to the office of the Vice President for Student Development.  Once approved, the accommodation plan will be developed.  It is the student’s responsibility to share the accommodation plan with the instructor of the course prior to the test date for tests or other assignments.


Honor Code: 
In accordance w/ CND policies, please affix the following statement on all papers, exams, and quizzes: “I will hereby affirm that I have neither given nor received help on this exam, paper or assignment.” (Signature)

The above statement indicates that all work turned in by the student is the student’s own original work.  Plagiarism of any kind will not be tolerated and will be dealt with according to policies outlined in the CND Student Handbook 

            Attendance & Participation             15%
            Blackboard Presentation            20%
            Tests                                       25%
Web Project                        40%

The Communication Arts Department grading scale will be in effect.
A            =            93--100
B+            =            88--92
B            =            82--87
C+            =            77--81
C            =            70--76
D            =            60--69
F            =            Below 60