Dr. Roger Clark   FALL 2017  

Section 004 (32764): Tues./ Thurs. 2:30-4:20 in Room S 2680

Section 050 (33480): Wed. 6:30-9:20 in Room S 2680


Office Hours (Room S 2806E)

Wednesday: 5:30-6:20 drop in. 

Tuesday and Thursday: 5:30-6:20 by appointment. I may also be able to meet at other times during those days.  

Email: clarkr@douglascollege.ca or ryoclark@gmail.com (I check this one more often). Please make sure to identify yourself by 1) your first and last name, 2) the course name -- Poetry -- and 3) the day and time of the class. For example: "Robin Smith, Poetry, Monday night." I teach about 120 students per term and don’t always have my class lists with me.

Course Description

We'll examine four novels, all of which feature journeys into dangerous places. We'll explore the themes of cross-cultural conflict, war, love, and meaning. We'll also compare some of the novels to their film versions. You'll be required to attend class, to participate in class discussion and group work, write two essays (take-home) and four in-class commentaries (for the mid-term and final exams).

Course Materials

Brian Moore, Black Robe

Graham Greene, The Quiet American

Christopher Koch, The Year of Living Dangerously

Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse-Five


20 %:  Essay # 1

20 %:  Mid-term exam (2 commentaries)             

25 %:  Essay # 2

25 %:  Final exam (2 commentaries)

10 %:  Participation

A+ = 95-100% = flawless or nearly flawless  A = 90-94%  =  exceptional  A- = 85-99% = excellent

B+ = 80-84% = extremely good  B = 75-79% = very good  B- = 70-74% = good

C+ = 65-69% = competent  C  = 60-65% = barely competent  C- = 55-59% = flawed

P = 50-54% = seriously flawed  F =  0-49% = unacceptable, fail

Assignments and Essays

There will be no re-writes or make-up assignments.

 Computer or printer problems won’t be accepted as valid reasons for missing or incomplete work. Always back up your latest copy. Since computers and printers can malfunction, complete your work at least a day in advance. Keep copies of earlier drafts.

 If you can’t physically hand me a paper when it’s due, put it in the LLPA assignment drop-box next to 2600. If you’re sick (or an emergency prevents you from coming to class), send me the essay by email. You must also (afterwards) give me a hard copy that’s exactly the same as the emailed version. I’ll mark the hard copy. If the hard copy differs from the original, I’ll count the hard copy as late.

 Except in very exceptional circumstances, I won’t mark emailed assignments or essays.  

Participation and Attendance

The participation mark reflects the degree to which you’re prepared for class and the degree to which you engage in classroom discussion in a constructive manner.


Attendance is mandatory. For a three-hour class, I’ll dock 5% of your final course mark for the second and for subsequent undocumented absences. For a two-hour class I’ll dock 2.5% for the third and for subsequent undocumented absences. By undocumented absence I mean an absence for which you offer no valid reason (accident, emergency, illness, etc.) and/or for which you have no verification (note from doctor, coach, parent, etc.). 

If you don’t attend at least 70% of the class (for whatever reason) you can’t get credit for the course. You’ll receive a “UN” grade -- an unofficial withdrawal.

If you have a job that conflicts with the class, get time-release commitments from your employer or drop the class. Don’t expect me to let you skip classes, come late, or leave early. If you repeatedly arrive late or leave early, you’ll be marked absent on those occasions.

After term ends I can give you mark breakdowns, and we can set up an appointment to discuss your mark, yet I won’t discuss your mark in detail over email.

Academic Integrity

Whenever you use a specific source for a marked assignment, you must document it. You don’t need to document what’s common knowledge (for example, that AIDS stands for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome), but you must document any wording or information that has a specific source (for example, a specific statement made about AIDS, a statistic on infection rates, etc.). Using the work of another student, or collaborating on the details of a final draft (apart from the two peer edits), is considered plagiarism.

Plagiarism will result in a 0% for the paper, and may also result in additional measures decided by the College according to its Academic Integrity Policy -- www.douglas college.ca/~/media/1B20B254925B41DD9F93C5B7CAF16700.ashx.   

The College library has handouts on citations, and their website has plenty of detailed information on citing and sourcing. The OWL site at Purdue University (http://owl.english.purdue.edu/) is also an excellent resource for MLA and APA documentation. It has a helpful section, “Using Research.”

Classroom Etiquette

While I want students to feel free to discuss almost anything in class, please put up your hand if you have a question or comment, and please try to be diplomatic when responding to the ideas of other students

Electronic Devices

- Don’t use cellphones, tablets, or computers during class (except when I ask you to look at a text in either hard copy or electronic form). Take notes by hand (you may need handwriting practice for the mid-term and final exams, anyway).

 - Please make phone calls in the hallway. If you’re expecting an important call or message, or if you’re an emergency contact, please tell me about it before class.

- Students who need to use laptops to take notes must have a letter from the Centre for Students with Disabilities.

Side Conversations. Please give your undivided attention while someone’s talking. Side conversations can be distracting to other students and are especially distracting to teachers. The occasional brief comment to your neighbour is fine, but any sort of sustained conversation will lower your participation mark. 


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