School of Humanities and Cultural Studies

Conduct In Writing Classes


All versions of ENG 1100 and 2100 require extensive class involvement in the form of daily writings, workshops, discussions, and lectures. Absence from one class does not excuse you from being fully prepared for the next class. If you cannot attend a class, you are responsible for any work you have missed. It is not up to the instructor to make sure you receive missed handouts, know due dates, or understand what needs to be done. Be aware that many instructors do not accept late work. While instructors set their own attendance policies, keep in mind the following:

  • Missing class will affect your final grade. Many instructors allow a few absences, but missing more classes will usually result in penalties ranging from a letter grade reduction to automatic failure.
  • You can be counted absent even if you are in class. Failing to follow the procedures for recording attendance or coming to class with assignments incomplete can result in being counted absent. Showing up is not enough and does not guarantee a passing grade.
  • Even in sections with no attendance policy, it is important that you do not miss class. Due to the highly interactive nature of workshops, missing class not only hurts your work but the work of your fellow classmates.
  • If you will miss class due to scheduled athletic events, you must submit a note from the Athletic Department to your instructor listing the dates you will miss. You will not be penalized for these absences, but you are still bound by the instructor’s policy for all other absences. Failure to submit an approved note at the start of the quarter will result in your absences being handled according to the class attendance policy.

Appropriate Conduct in Writing Classes

Writing courses are usually set up as workshops, which writer and teacher Donald Murray defines as “a community where writers help each other develop their own meanings and their own voices. It is also a community where apprentices and masters work side by side in the practice of their craft” (A Writer Teaches Writing [Boston: Houghton, 1985], 187). As in any community, certain sorts of behavior are counterproductive.

In general, behaviors that interfere with the work of the class or that of the instructor will not be tolerated. These include, but are not limited to, the following: persistent refusal to participate in class activities; persistent disruption of the class; intimidation of the instructor or fellow students, in or out of class; or other behaviors defined as unacceptable in “Student Code of Conduct” in the Wright State University Student Handbook.

An instructor who finds that a student’s behavior is interfering with her or his work or the work of the class has the authority of the English Department and the Writing Programs Committee to take the following actions:

  1. Notify Student Verbally
    The instructor should discuss the problem, as he or she perceives it, with the student. If the behavior ceases, no further action will be warranted.
  2. Temporarily Remove Student from Class
    If the behavior occurs again, the instructor may insist that the student leave the class or conference and be counted as absent for that day; such absences will count against the total allowed by the instructor’s stated policy. After such action, the instructor will write a letter to the Director of Writing Programs outlining the nature of the problem with specific incidents, dates of occurrence, and instructor actions. Copies will be sent to the Vice President of Student Affairs, to the student’s advisor, to the Chair of the English Department, and to the student, using the student’s campus mail address or email address. This letter will serve as a second warning to the student.
  3. Remove Student from Class Permanently
    If the behavior occurs yet again, the instructor may again insist that the student leave the class or conference. The instructor must immediately contact the Director of Writing Programs. Once the instructor has outlined the nature of the problem, the director will send a letter to the student at the student’s campus mail address or email address describing the nature of the problem and requesting the student to meet with the director to present his or her view of the problem. If the director concurs with the instructor’s assessment of the problem, or if the student chooses not to appear at the meeting, the director will withdraw the student from the course. The director may also refer the student to the Office of Community Standards and Student Conduct for further disciplinary action.


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