FAQ: Introduction to College Reading and Composition I and II
What are the required texts for ICRC I or ICRC II?
Can I require students to buy texts that aren't required by the department?
No. Instructors can require students to buy or rent only the texts required by the department. You may list any other texts as "optional" on your syllabus, or you can copy and hand out excerpts from any supplemental readings that you wish to assign. Please remember, though, that the majority of the reading that you assign must come from the required texts. Students should be making enough use of the required texts to justify the purchase or rental price paid for them.
Should I give some kind of diagnostic on the first day of class? Is there a standard one?
A diagnostic essay is required in both ICRC I and ICRC II; it should be given on the first day that your class meets in the computer lab. It is a required part of the students' end-of-semester portfolios, therefore it should include the student's G# at the top, but not have the student's name or your name anywhere on it. Instructors should not return the diagnostics to their students until the very end of the term when students are assembling their portfolios. Diagnostics are not to be graded.
Giving a diagnostic can help you get a sense of your students’ ability. If you feel that a student is potentially misplaced, please contact the Chair to arrange a reading of the diagnostic essay, but please know that students in ICRC II cannot be forced to move backwards to ICRC I. It's important, furthermore, if you feel that a student might have difficulty, that you talk to the student in as positive a way as possible, suggesting one-on-one conferencing and visits to the Academic Support Center, for example. What we need to avoid is giving the student a sense that failure is a foregone conclusion.
The department will send an email at the beginning of the semester to all ICRC I and II instructors with the diagnostic essay prompt that you should use for that term.
Do instructors have to give any kind of placement test at the end of the semester?
No. A student’s placement after ICRC I or ICRC II is determined by the grade he or she gets for the course; the student’s course grade is determined by the quality of the portfolio that he or she puts together at the end of the semester. For a detailed explanation of how a student may progress through the department’s composition sequence, please see our Quick Guide to Composition Course Sequencing and the handout “Overview of English Composition Sequence” (.doc).
Should instructors give a final exam during the final exam period?
No. There is no final exam during the final exam period for ICRC I or ICRC II.
What is the X grade? Does it apply to all developmental courses?
The English Department no longer gives the X grade because it does not get factored into the new "term GPA." However, for our departmental purposes, we still want to keep a record of whether a student receives an F due to not submitting a portfolio or due to the poor quality of the portfolio. Therefore, after we determine the student's placement at the ICRC Portfolio Reading Session, we will write "NP" for "No Portfolio" next to the name of any student who did not submit a portfolio in addition to writing an F next to that student's name since that is the grade that he or she will get for the course. The "NP" designation is for our records in case the student goes to the Chair with questions about placement. Students whose portfolios are not strong enough to move up a level will also receive a grade of F.
Should instructors do an exit conference?
An exit conference would benefit students who want to know their placements. Exit conferences are not required.
Updated 4/14/14 by SA