SOP 3723 Syllabus

The following fictional material was written by Richard Thripp for his Teaching Portfolio in the Preparing Tomorrow’s Faculty program at University of Central Florida in fall 2014.

This syllabus was adapted from the syllabus of Lauren Trottier, M.S., and includes elements of her syllabus and the duplication of some phrases, wording, and her assigned readings and topics. The author took this course when she instructed it in the fall 2013 semester at University of Central Florida, Daytona Beach.

Notable differences from Ms. Trottier’s syllabus include the introduction of online quizzes, online discussions, and an in-class participation grade component; changes to the presentation and essay assignments; addition of course outcomes; changes to extra credit opportunities; and a de-emphasis of exams.


Cross-Cultural Psychology – Syllabus
SOP 3723 – 3.0 Credit Hours
Fall 2015

Instructor: Richard Thripp
Classroom: UCF Daytona Beach (Building 140), Room 209
Class Time: Thursday, 9:00 AM – 11:50 PM

Email: Email through Webcourses
Office Hours: Thursdays 12:00 – 1:00 PM or by appointment

Prerequisite: PSY 2012, General Psychology (3.0 credit hours)

Required Text:
Matsumoto, D., & Juang, L. (2013). Culture & Psychology. 5th ed., Cengage Learning.
ISBN: 978-1-111-34493-1

Recommended Text:
Publication manual of the American Psychological Association, 6th ed. (2010). Washington, DC.

Course Description:

Students will learn about the relationship between people and culture in a broad variety of contexts and domains, with a focus on the issues affecting underprivileged groups such as females, ethnic and religious minorities, people with low socioeconomic status, and people with mental or physical handicaps. Students will exit this class having written about important intercultural issues and having given a presentation on a relevant cultural issue that interests them; they will also be able to work competently in groups and be able to articulate key issues affecting cross-cultural communication and solidarity.

Course Outcomes:

By the end of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Understand and articulate diverse cultural, societal, and historical issues;
  2. Think progressively, recognizing and evaluating individual and group differences;
  3. Understand and be able to recall basic cross-cultural theories and concepts;
  4. Express a working knowledge of issues of gender, privilege, religions and customs, and individualist vs. collectivist cultures;
  5. Prepare and give a 10-15 minute in-class presentation regarding a relevant cultural issue, including an analysis of the issue and suggestions for action;
  6. Recognize and appropriately cite empirical, peer-reviewed cultural research in an essay about a cross-cultural issue from class that interests them.

I hope you will share my passion for this cross-cultural issues and develop a more detailed and nuanced understanding of cultural issues through the lectures, discussions, and assignments in this course. This is the type of course that sticks with you, raises your awareness, and can have long-term beneficial effects on you and the people around you. Please enjoy the journey.

Course Requirements:

Exams (2 exams worth 20% each = 40%): There will be a midterm and final exam. Each exam will consist of multiple-choice and short-answer questions. Exams will cover material from the required readings as well as material discussed in class. Everyone is expected to take each exam on its scheduled day, and a study guide will be provided prior to each exam.

In-Class Presentation (15%): Each student will give a 10-15 minute presentation on a cultural issue of his/her choice, including an analysis of the issue and suggestions for action. At least one relevant article from a peer-reviewed journal must be referenced in the presentation. Students must submit their topic and peer-reviewed journal article to the instructor at least 1 week before giving their presentation. Students may choose to include PowerPoint slides, graphics, and videos in their presentation, but no more than 3 minutes of video may be included. Presentations will be given on a rolling basis on the following class days: 09/24/2014, 10/01/2015, 10/08/2015, 10/22/2015, 10/29/2015, and 11/05/2015. Students will be given the opportunity to voice their preference and will be assigned a presentation date during the 09/10/2015 class. Interested students may give a 1-2 minute mini-presentation during the 09/17/2015 class for evaluation and practice.

Critical Thought Paper (15%): Students will write a 3-5 page paper (in APA format) discussing scholarly research on a topic covered in class or in the textbook that interests them. Successful papers must cite at least 3 relevant, peer-reviewed articles from the past 10 years, of which at least 1 must be original research. A title page, abstract page, and references page are required, but are not part of the required 3-5 pages. There will be an online module and in-class discussion about APA style and how to use UCF Library Tools to find journal articles. There will also be an opportunity to submit a draft paper for review (by 11/19/2015). A rubric for grading of the papers will be provided. Papers will be due through Webcourses on 12/03/2015 at 11:59 PM. Papers should be double-spaced with before/after line spacing of 0 pts. Use 12 pt. Times New Roman font with 1-inch margins on all sides. Late papers will be deducted 10 points per day.

Online Discussions (10%): Students will participate in 3 online discussions regarding the application of essential course topics to their day-to-day lives. For each discussion, students will be expected to craft a well-written post of approximately 250 words citing the textbook and/or course materials, as well as make thoughtful replies of approximately 100 words to 2 classmates.

Online Quizzes (5%): During the semester, students will be expected to take a multiple-choice syllabus quiz (2%), as well as a multiple-choice and short-answer quiz on APA style and how to select appropriate research (3%). These quizzes are not expected to be highly difficult, but should help assess your understanding of the topics. Both quizzes will be offered through Webcourses. I may use the results of these quizzes to identify and reach out to at-risk students in the class.

In-Class Participation (15%): There will be many opportunities for discussion and participation regarding various topics in the class. These activities will help you synthesize concepts in the course and discuss them with your instructor and peers. They will largely be graded on attendance and participation, so most students who attend class consistently should get 100% in this section.

Missed Assignments or Exams:

Participation is expected in this class and missing class may result in loss of participation points. Excused absences are allowed under documented extenuating circumstances and in such cases, the student will be given opportunities to make up points or submit an assignment late. However, it is not acceptable to miss an exam without prior notice (except in emergency circumstances). Please manage your time well and complete your assignments early if possible. While I will provide my lecture notes and some in-class materials online, you are fully responsible for the content covered in missed classes.

Studying for Exams and Getting Help:

Exam questions will require demonstration of topical knowledge and broad conceptual understanding of in-class lectures. There is a lot of material in this class and you should be prepared to devote 6-9 hours per week for review and study, in addition to class time. Please contact me if you are having any difficulties (sooner rather than later). I would be glad to make suggestions and address your concerns in-person or by email—my goal is to help you learn.

Student Disability Access:

The University of Central Florida is committed to providing reasonable accommodations for all persons with disabilities. This syllabus is available in alternate formats upon request. Students who need accommodations must be registered with Student Disability Services, Ferrell Commons Room 185, phone (407) 823-2371, TTY/TDD only phone (407) 823-2116, before requesting accommodations from the professor.

Grading Procedures:

Final grades will be calculated according to the following scale:
A = 90%-100%, B = 80%-89%, C = 70%-79%, D = 60%-69%, F = 59% or less.

Plus or minus grades will not be given. Fractional grades will be rounded to the nearest integer (i.e., 89.4% will become 89% = B, 89.5% will become 90% = A). In borderline cases I may opt to round in the students’ favor—if so, this will be done on a class-wide basis.

Extra Credit:

Up to 10% of additional credit on the final grade can be earned through extra credit. Firstly, students will be able to write up to (2) 1-page (double-spaced) opinion pieces from a list of 5 topics that will be provided on 10/22/2015. Each opinion piece will be worth up to 2.5 points toward your final grade. Secondly, students will be able to earn up to 5 points toward their final grades in an in-class, collaborative quiz on 11/12/2015. Students will be permitted to work in groups of 2 or 3 for this quiz. Please discuss and select your group partners before class. This extra credit quiz will also help prepare you for the final exam.

Academic Honesty Policy:

Integrity and scholarship are guiding values at UCF—cheating and plagiarizing are not congruent with these values and will result in serious sanctions. Students in this class are expected to act in accordance with the Policy on Academic Dishonesty for the University of Central Florida and the Department of Psychology. Sanctions for academic dishonesty may range from a reduced grade on an assignment to a failing grade in the entire course. Please know and understand UCF’s Rules of Conduct.

Personal Conduct Standard:

Because discussion and participation is a vital part of this course and will involve contentious and sensitive topics, it is very important that students respect the views and opinions of others. Should a student choose to disclose sensitive or personal information in a group activity or class discussion, out of respect for their privacy, such statements should not be shared elsewhere.

Course Schedule:

Date Reading Activities, Assignments, and Due Dates*
08/27/2015 Chapter 1 In-class orientation (no grades this week—before UCF Add deadline)

Fun stuff—introductions, role plays, videos (not graded)

09/03/2015 Chapters 2 AND 3 Syllabus quiz due (online)

In-class activities (graded on participation)

09/10/2015 Chapter 4 Online discussion #1 due

Students choose which week to give their in-class presentation

09/17/2015 Chapter 5 In-class activities (graded on participation)

Students may present 1-2 minutes in-class for evaluation/practice

09/24/2015 Chapter 6 Online module/quiz due for APA style and how to find/select research

Student presentations begin (week 1)

10/01/2015 Chapter 7 In-class discussion of APA module, brainstorming topics for final paper

Student presentations, week 2

Midterm study guide distributed; guided discussion

10/08/2015 Chapter 8 Online discussion #2 due

Student presentations, week 3

Review for midterm, answer questions from students

10/15/2015 Chapter 9 Midterm exam 9:00 – 10:30 AM (Chapters 1-8)
10/22/2015 Chapter 10 In-class activities (graded on participation)

Student presentations, week 4

10/29/2015 Chapter 11 In-class activities (graded on participation)

Student presentations, week 5

11/05/2015 Chapter 12 Online discussion #3 due

Student presentations end (week 6)

11/12/2015 Chapter 13 Final exam study guide distributed; discussion/questions about paper

In-class collaborative extra credit quiz

11/19/2015 Chapter 14 Deadline to submit draft paper for instructor review

Guided discussion to assess for synthesis of course concepts

11/26/2014 NONE NO CLASS – THANKSGIVING
12/03/2015 Chapter 15 Final paper due, extra credit assignments due

Review for final, answer questions from students

12/10/2015 Final exam 9:00 – 11:50 AM (Chapters 9-15)

* This schedule is tentative. Any changes will be announced in-class or by Webcourses email.

This syllabus was adapted from the syllabus of Lauren Trottier, M.S., and includes elements of her syllabus and the duplication of some phrases, wording, and her assigned readings and topics. The author took this course when she instructed it in the fall 2013 semester at University of Central Florida, Daytona Beach.


Other pages in Richard Thripp’s Teaching Portfolio:

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