By nature, our course is non-traditional, and our course materials reflect that.  There is a $12 charge to complete a required Clifton Strengths Assessment, but there are no other required books.  All students should be prepared to access linked resources and reading materials on the internet and may choose to print these materials at their own expense.  In addition, we recommend purchasing an Honors College binder from the College of Charleston Barnes and Noble bookstore.  These can be found as “recommended texts” for our assigned course number (HONS 100), and are extremely useful in managing the print version of the portfolio you will create in this course.


Attendance (10%): Attendance is required. Many activities and assignments will be completed during scheduled class periods, and your successful completion of these activities will be largely dependent on your attendance. You are allowed one unexcused absence.  For an absence to be excused, you must file an absence memo with documentation through the Absence Memo Office.  More than one unexcused absence will result in your grade being lowered incrementally: from an A to an A-, for example, or from a B- to a C+. While this attendance policy remains firm, we will be flexible and accommodating in cases where excessive absence is due to unavoidable issues involving COVID-19, personal health, religious participation, or family crises.

Class Engagement (25%): Participation in all aspects of class is essential. You are expected to actively engage in class activities, to contribute meaningfully to discussions, and to display dedication and earnest effort in exploring the class topics and tasks. This is simply what honors students do. Your PF will address any shortcoming in this area with you personally either over e-mail or during one of your consultation meetings. If you fail to address concerns regarding engagement that your PF or one of the faculty members brings up with you, your grade will be lowered incrementally: from an A to an A-, for example, or from a B- to a C+.

Individual Consultations: (10%) In addition to regular class sessions, you will be required to attend four additional meetings outside of regular class sessions with your peer facilitator throughout the semester. While each session will have a particular purpose, there will be ample time to address broader concerns and just to simply with your peer facilitator one-on-one.  These sessions may be conducted in-person or online at your peer facilitator’s discretion and with health and safety in mind.  Please remember to respect your peer facilitator’s time as if it were your own.  All you have to do to earn a good grade on this is arrive on time and ready to chat.

Portfolio (40%): Throughout the semester you will create an electronic portfolio that will set the framework for your academic, professional, and civic accomplishments across your college career. Because the portfolio is a semester-long project, it will go through several revisions in response to things like peer edits, in-class workshops, outside input from Academic Writing instructors and Writing Lab staff, and feedback from PFs and class leaders. Your final portfolio will include the following documents:

  • PACE Navigator:  This document is a comprehensive planning tool that you will use throughout your time in the Honors College.  It allows you to chart out your individual academic plan in addition to noting professional and community engagement plans. We will spend time in class discussing the best methods for long- and short-term planning on the PACE Navigator, and this is a document you should update and share with your Honors advisor for each of your semester advising appointments.
  • Professional Documents:
    • Resume: This is a standard professional document that captures your academic, professional, and community achievements to date.
    • Personal Narrative
  • Honors Engaged
    • Honors Engaged Proposal
    • Honors Engaged Semester Reflection

Honors Engaged  (15%): Honors Engaged is the umbrella first-year community engagement program in which all first-year students participate. Through Honors Engaged, you will learn about best practices in community engagement and receive project-specific training to gain  the skills necessary to carry out your service role. Informal discussion of your Honors Engaged experience and related community engagement concepts will unfold across the semester. Your Honors Engaged grade will be based on your consistent and earnest participation with your assignment, the quality of your formal proposal, and the completion of your midterm self-assessment. See the Honors Engaged website for more details.


Masks covering the nose and mouth will be required for all face-to-face interactions related to this course.  We require this in compliance with broader campus and municipal policies and because we are committed to protecting our community’s public health.  You will not be permitted to attend in-person classes or meetings if you are not wearing a mask.  Please join the BGS Team in making this small sacrifice for the good of us all.


Since we will provide very few hard copies of handouts and because we will need to continue practicing social distancing in the classroom, we encourage you to bring your laptops or tablets to class. Please note: this is not an invitation to access any other websites, read email, check Facebook, or do any work not related to work we’re doing in class on any given day. Additionally, please use professionalism regarding the use of cell phones; get into the practice of turning off your phones and putting them away before each class begins.  Students who do not abide by these expectations jeopardize their Class Engagement grades.


The Honor Code of the College of Charleston specifically forbids:

1. Lying: knowingly furnishing false information, orally or in writing, including but not limited to deceit or efforts to deceive relating to academic work, to information legitimately sought by an official or employee of the College, and to testimony before individuals authorized to inquire or investigate conduct; lying also includes the fraudulent use of identification cards and fabrication of data, endnotes, footnotes and other information related to academic work.

2. Cheating: the actual giving or receiving of unauthorized, dishonest assistance that might give one student an unfair advantage over another in the performance of any assigned, graded academic work, inside or outside of the classroom, and by any means whatsoever, including but not limited to fraud, duress, deception, theft, talking, making signs, gestures, copying, electronic messaging, photography, unauthorized reuse of previously graded work, unauthorized dual submission, unauthorized collaboration and unauthorized use or possession of study aids, memoranda, books, data, or other information. The term cheating includes engaging in any behavior related to graded academic work specifically prohibited by an instructor in the course syllabus or class discussion.

3. Attempted cheating: a willful act designed to accomplish cheating, but falling short of that goal.

4. Stealing: the unauthorized taking or appropriating of property from the College or from another member of the college community. Note also that stealing includes unauthorized copying of and unauthorized access to computer software.

5. Attempted stealing: a willful act designed to accomplish stealing, but falling short of that goal.

6. Plagiarism:

  • 6.1. The verbatim repetition, without acknowledgement, of the writings of another author. All significant phrases, clauses, or passages, taken directly from source material must be enclosed in quotation marks and acknowledged in the text itself and/or in footnotes/endnotes.
  • 6.2. Borrowing without acknowledging the source.
  • 6.3. Paraphrasing the thoughts of another writer without acknowledgement.
  • 6.4. Allowing any other person or organization to prepare work which one then submits as his/her own.

Attempted cheating, attempted stealing, and the knowing possession of stolen property shall be subject to the same punishment as the other offenses. Because the potential penalties for an Honor Code violation are extremely serious, all students should be thoroughly familiar with the above definitions and their consequences.  Students can find the complete Honor Code and all related processes in the Student Handbook at here.

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