Here are the assignments that contribute to your grade, with their frequencies and percentage of the final grade:
Strictly speaking, there is no curve, so you are not competing against your fellow students. I encourage you to study together and learn from each other! However, if grades don't turn out as I expect, then I'll consider whether an assignment was more difficult than I intended and adjust the grades accordingly (usually by making a hard problem extra credit).
Here are the letter grades at SCC:
|A+:||at least 95%;|
|A:||at least 90% but less than 95%;|
|B+:||at least 85% but less than 90%;|
|B:||at least 80% but less than 85%;|
|C+:||at least 75% but less than 80%;|
|C:||at least 70% but less than 75%;|
|D+:||at least 65% but less than 70%;|
|D:||at least 60% but less than 65;|
|F:||less than 60%.|
At SCC, a C is the minimum grade necessary to qualify for a later course, which is usually also what you will need to transfer a prerequisite; for meeting transfer admission requirements, you usually only need a D. However, sometimes you may still need a C for admission, and sometimes you may need a C+ or (very rarely) even a B for either purpose; talk to an advisor if you don't know what you need. Of course, you should try for an A+!
Sometimes you will be required to show some of your work; make sure that you read and follow the instructions! To get as much credit as possible, it's good to explain your answers as clearly as you can, even when the instructions don't specifically ask you to. If you can convince me that you know what you're doing, then you'll get some credit. But if it looks as if you pulled an answer out of thin air (or the back of the book), then you won't get credit. I also suggest that you cross out (and not erase) any significant amount of work that you decide is incorrect, in case you later want to look at it after all.
I will assign homework almost every day, covering material that I lectured on that day, and due the next class day (unless otherwise stated). However, only some problems will actually be graded for correctness; during class on the day that the homework is due, you will have the opportunity to work in small groups to discuss your answers to those problems and rewrite them if you wish.
As you do your homework before class, I encourage you to talk with your fellow students; you can also talk to other people and look at other books. However, when you write up your homework during class, you should only communicate with the people in your group (or me), and you should all understand as much as possible what you turn in. When making the final write-up, you may use calculators (but not communication devices such as cell phones) and any notes that you wrote yourself (including, of course, any homework that you wrote up before class); you may also use your textbook, but only to reread the problem.
The small groups will be assigned differently every day. You may all sign the same paper, or you may turn in separate papers; either way, please write up a fresh paper with your answers. No one can be forced to sign on to a paper that they disagree with, nor can anyone be prevented from signing on to any paper from their group. Most of your homework grade will come from these group papers, but one third will come from your own paper prepared before class, which will only be checked for completeness (and 90% complete rounds up to full credit). You can turn this in up to one class day late with no penalty, in case you can't complete it until after the in-class questions.
If you miss class, then you can turn in your homework later, but you may be graded on different problems; once the homework has been graded and returned, you may not be able to get full credit (or indeed any credit) for late homework. I encourage you to contact me as soon as possible if you miss class or expect to. Late homework will only get full credit for completeness if you leave me a message before the next class day after it was due.
For the specific assigned problems, see the homework list.
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