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My name is Marla DeSoto, and I'm a full time instructor in the English Department.  Here are some helpful links for you to get to know me and contact me.

bullet My schedule with office hours
bulletMy email is marla.desoto@gcmail.maricopa.edu
bullet A campus map to my office in HT2-111. My office phone number is 623-845-3637. There is a voice message machine for you to leave a message if I am not in my office. My home phone number is 623-825-1936.  There is also a message machine if I am not home.
bullet My website.

Course Description

Official Course Description and Competencies
English 101, First Year Composition, emphasizes expository composition and standard English writing skills. Students will plan, write and revise six assignments in the thesis/support format.  Emphasis is placed on the writing process.


Because we want you to succeed, GCC has a course placement procedure for English classes.  All students must take the ASSET test before registering for ENG101. Prerequisites for enrollment in ENG101 are an ASSET English placement test score of 40 or better, or a C' in ENG 071.

bullet Read about the ASSET course placement test
bullet GCC's Course Placement Testing

Student Expectations

To be successful in an online course, a student should be comfortable using a computer, have keyboarding skills, and some experience using a web browser, email, and word processing.  You need to know:

bullet how to use your computer and log on to the internet,
bullet how to browse the web with Internet Explorer,
bullet how to send and read email,
bullet how to use a word processing program and save and retrieve files.

Computer Requirements

A student's home computer should have the following hardware and software:

bullet an up-to-date Macintosh or Windows platform with a reliable internet connection;
bullet current version of Internet Explorer (6) or Netscape (7);
bullet Real Player for hearing audio files (the free version is fine; you need to look for it);
bullet an email program of your choice;
bullet a word processing program of your choice.

Students may use the computers at GCC in the High Tech Centers (hours of operation), but most students enrolling in an online course use their home computer. If your home computer is unavailable for any reason during the semester, you will need to find a substitute computer or use the computers on campus to keep up with your work.

Textbook and Course Materials

No textbook is required for this class.  Your instructor will provide online resources and other materials in place of a textbook. These materials are accessed through the virtual classroom at this location: http://glory.gc.maricopa.edu/~mdesoto/101online/index.htm   Create a Favorites link to this page in Internet Explorer. The virtual classroom is open 7 days a week, 24 hours a day. You can access your course materials and classroom discussions whenever it is convenient for you. 

Student Email

Every student, upon registration, is assigned an email account and has access to other computing services at GCC. Online students must email their instructor to request a username for their GCC student email account.  The initial password is your student ID number (usually your social security number).  As soon as you receive your username, please change your password from your student ID number to something of your own choice at the change your password webpage. Student email addresses are in this format:  username@student.gc.maricopa.edu  

Your instructor and classmates will use your GCC student email address to contact you. Please be sure you can access your GCC student email before the end of the first week of class. If you have enrolled at GCC in the recent past, you have the same email account, username, and password.  If you do not remember your password, you must come to campus and scan your Student ID at one of the Palette Account Stations at the west end of HT1 or HT2. Follow the instructions on the screen. Contact your instructor if you have problems with this.

Your Student ID is required to use the Library, Fitness Center, and High Tech Centers; to attend aerobics classes and Student Life activities; and to pick up payroll checks at the Cashier's Office. A free Student ID card can be obtained at the Enrollment Center (EC) Building after tuition and fees are paid. 

Most students access their GCC student email in one of three ways:

bullet Outlook Express (you need to setup a new email account in Outlook Express using these Instructions for Using Outlook Express).
bullet GCC Student E-mail Web Page at https://student.gc.maricopa.edu/ (a web page where you can read and write GCC student email)
bullet Forward GCC Student Email to another email account so you never have to worry about checking GCC Student Email! This is the most popular option with students who already have an existing email account.

Course Assignments

Students will complete 6 major writing assignments, in addition to other small assignments.  All assignments must be word-processed and submitted via email. All 6 major writing assignments must be completed to receive a grade of C or higher in the course. Students will also receive credit for participation in class discussions and group projects. Extra credit is not available, but you will have ample opportunity to do well.  More information about the assignments is provided in the course web site.  

Written Assignment Grading Criteria Points
Assignment 1 Assessment Rubric for Assignment 1 15
Assignment 2 Assessment Rubric for Assignment 2 15
Assignment 3 Assessment Rubric for Assignment 3 15
Assignment 4 Assessment Rubric for Assignment 4


Assignments 5 & 6 Assessment Rubric for Assignments 5 & 6 30
Peer Review 2, 3, 5, 6 Completed 20
Weekly Discussions Minimum of two postings each week 16
Jump Start Completed 5


All students should become familiar with the English department's criteria for the evaluation of essays.  Essays will be graded and assigned points according to the rubric for each assignment.  Failure to complete an assignment results in 0 points.  Students can check their current grade at any time using MIDAS at http://www.maricopa.edu/midas/.  More information is on the Grades webpage.

Deadlines and Due Dates

Every assignment has a specific date on which it is due.  Because the assignments are sequential and develop progressively more complex writing skills, they must be completed in order and by the deadline.  While a reasonable amount of flexibility is necessary in online courses, it is important to stay on track and turn in assignments on time.  Additionally, class discussions are related to current writing assignments, as are group activities with classmates.  Students need to be current with their assignments to be able to participate and contribute to the class activities.

Attendance and Time Requirements

Class begins on Monday, August 23, 2004.  Although your class doesn't meet on campus, you are required to attend class by logging into your virtual classroom at least 4 to 5 times a week.  You will spend about  8 to 9 hours per week accessing the course materials, reading and writing in the discussion area, and working on assignments, alone or with classmates. [view the college's policies on class attendance


I will work with you as much as is reasonable to avoid your withdrawal from the class. However, there are times and circumstances in which withdrawal is the best option.  As soon as you realize you are having problems meeting the class requirements in a timely manner, please email me at marla.desoto@gcmail.maricopa.edu to discuss the problem.  To withdraw from the class, the student must call 623-845-3333 during registration hours. See the college's policy on withdrawal from specific courses.


Using someone else's words or ideas as if they were your own is plagiarism.  The way to avoid this is to give credit to the author.  Use citations to give credit to the author; you will gain the respect of others, and you will also avoid an automatic F on the paper.  View the Maricopa District's policy on Academic Misconduct, including cheating, plagiarism, and excessive absences.

Student Services

The Student Services website contains information about student resources and activities.

bullet Bookstore (eFollett.com) you do not need a textbook for this course
bullet Campus Maps
bullet Counseling Center offers assistance and courses in personal development, career exploration, anger management, etc.
bullet Career Services assists students with part-time and full-time job placement and career guidance
bulletDisability Services and Resources assists students with reasonable accommodations for persons with documented disabilities.  Students should notify  and their instructors of any special needs.
bullet Enrollment Services access registration and records
bullet Financial Aid loans, scholarships, and grants in aid
bullet Gecko - The Student Server computing services, including email, web page space, and others
bullet International Students services for students from around the world
bullet Registration, Records, Grades
bullet Student Handbook contains college policies.
bullet Student Life leadership programs, student clubs and student government
bullet Veterans Services assists veterans and their dependents in successfully registering and obtaining benefits

The FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) addresses many concerns in more detail.

The course syllabus is subject to change without notice and may vary from this outline to meet the needs of this particular group.


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