Course Outline Guidelines

Faculty of Applied Health Sciences

Course Outline Guidelines

The following guideline is offered to assist faculty in the generation of their course outlines. Items identified by italics and those with the reference (FHB) are required according to the Brock University Faculty Handbook. Other items are offered as options that others have found successful.

1. Instructor information

  • Instructor’s name, office hours and contact information (e-mail, tel. extension)
  • Name, office hours and contact information for additional instructional and course support personnel (e.g., Coordinator, TAs, etc.)

2. Course information, materials, dates:

  • Course calendar description
  • Location of lecture, labs/seminars
  • Course prerequisites and/or co-requisites
  • Course goals/ objectives (These goals should be expressible in terms of knowledge, understanding, capability or accomplishment and not in terms of natural talent or intelligence.(FHB: 10.2.1)
  • Course text, supplemental text and/or required and supplemental reading list
  • Date for withdrawal without academic penalty (FHB: 10.1.3 F)
  • Date by which students will receive notification of 15% of their final grade in the course (FHB: 10.1.3 F). Note: this date must be one week before the withdrawal date. (FHB: 10.1.3. E)
  • Dates when topics will be discussed in lectures
  • Dates, readings and topics to be discussed at each seminar, tutorial, lab, etc.
  • Lab fees, if applicable
  • Course technology (e.g., WEB CT), if applicable
  • Definition of academic misconduct and penalties (see statement below)
  • Statement of whether a computerized plagiarism detection system will be used (FHB: 10.1.3 G). It will be assumed that students who remain in the course, having been informed of the use of such systems, will have agreed to their use. (FHB: 10.4)

*If a student declares a principled objection to participate in the use of such systems, the instructor must provide students with a reasonable offline alternative to using the system such as, but not limited to:

  • Require a short reflection paper
  • Require a draft bibliography prior to submission of the final work
  • Require the cover page and first cited page of each reference source to be photocopied and submitted with the final paper; and/or
  • Require the submission of specified rough notes and drafts. (FHB: 10.4)

Detail regarding the submission process and format of the assignment to be submitted electronically.

3. Course assessment and evaluation:

  • All assignments required for the course. (e.g., examinations, seminar and classroom participation, papers, lab and studio activities, peer evaluation and any other normal class assignments, tests, and the nature of the proposed manner in which evaluation will be carried out. For each course, the grading scheme will reflect a reasonable diversity of these methods as appropriate for the subject matter. (FHB: 10.1.1; 10.1.3 A)
  • When peer evaluation is used, that component cannot count for more that 25% of the final grade. (FHB: 10.1.2)
  • Relationship between attendance and grades (i.e. participation). (FHB: 10.1.3 A)
  • Distribution of grades among assignments, examinations, etc. (See FHB: 10.1.3 for system of numeric grades)
  • Due dates for assignments. Note: Due dates for assignments must not be scheduled after the last day of final examinations for the term. (FHB: 10.1.3 B)
  • Penalty for late submission of assignments, if any. (FHB: 10.1.3 C)
  • Directions for handing in assignments after hours.
  • Final exams are required in all courses numbered 1(alpha)00-1(alpha)99. (FHB: 9.2.1)
  • Progress (mid-term) examinations are required in all full credit courses numbered 1(alpha)00 to 1(alpha)99. They shall be administered at the mid-point of the academic session. (Identify the location of the midterm if the location is different from the assigned lecture room)
  • Exams may be scheduled during the regular class period, during the formally scheduled examination period, or in a special examination period scheduled in the academic timetable and not conflicting with regular class periods or other examinations. (FHB: 9.1.10)
  • No student may be required to write an examination or test in a time period which conflicts with any of his/her classes (FHB 9.1.10)
  • Class tests and examinations worth more than 5% may be offered in the final two weeks of each term only under extreme, extenuating circumstances and with permission of the Dean. (FHB: 9.1.10)
  • Laboratory tests worth no more than 20% of a student’s final grade may be scheduled, during a student’s regularly timetabled laboratory period, in the last week of a term.

*Suggested statement to be included in every course outline:
Academic integrity is a core value of the academic mission of Brock University, defined as the pursuit of knowledge and scholarship through the provision of academic programs and a learning environment of the highest quality. It is in the interest of the University's academic mission that every student adheres to the highest standards of scholarly integrity. As such, academic dishonesty is taken very seriously and will not be tolerated.
Academic dishonesty, defined as academic misconduct, consists of misrepresentation by deception or by other fraudulent means and can result in serious consequences, e.g., lower grade or failure on the assignment or examination, failure in the course, suspension from the University for a definite period, notation on the student’s official transcript, or withholding or rescinding a Brock University degree or certificate.
It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic misconduct. For information on the various kinds of academic dishonesty please refer to the current Brock University Undergraduate Calendar. (

The following illustrates only four examples of academic dishonesty:

  • Plagiarism; defined as presenting work done (in whole or part) by someone else as if it were one’s own, or for which other credit has been obtained e.g., using direct quotations or large sections of paraphrased material without acknowledgement.
  • Improper collaboration, e.g., copying from another student, or making information available to other students knowing that this is to be submitted as the borrower’s own work.
  • Impersonation, copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.
  • Obtaining medical or other certificates under false pretenses

(If applicable) In this course, we will be using a software package designed to reveal plagiarism. Students will be required to submit their work electronically [and in hard copy] so that it can be checked for academic dishonesty. If a student declares a principled objection to participate in the use of such s system, [the instructor] will provide the student with a reasonable offline alternative [e.g. submission of rough notes and drafts of the assignment, a draft bibliography and/or evidence of the use of sources and references, etc].

Anna H. Lathrop, Ed.D
Associate Dean, Undergraduate Affairs
Faculty of Applied Health Sciences (revised, 2006)

The following sources are acknowledged as references in the preparation of this guideline:
D. Siegel, 2005, “Check-list of information to be included on the course outline, 2005”, Faculty of Social Sciences, Brock University
Jill Grose, “Checklist of Effective Course Design components”, Centre for Teaching, Learning and Educational Technologies, Brock University
McMaster University, Academic Integrity, Language for Course Outlines
Brock University, Faculty Handbook
Brock University, 2006/07 Undergraduate Calendar

Course OUtline