Creating a Syllabus

Below you will find some helpful information and resources to use when creating your syllabus.

Polk State College Procedure
Polk State College Procedure 1001 contains guidelines for communicating course information to students. The procedure clearly outlines the elements instructors are required to include in their syllabus.

Procedure 1001
Contains all guidelines related to communicating course information to students including the list of required syllabus elements.

Syllabus Checklist
Contains required syllabus elements as indicated in Procedure 1001 formatted as a handy checklist.

Learning-Centered Syllabus
Faculty are encouraged to develop and utilize a learning-centered syllabus. Judith Grunert O’Brien, author of The Course Syllabus: A Learning-Centered Approach, describes the learning-centered syllabus this way:

“A learning-centered syllabus includes more, rather than less, information. It provides students with the resources of a course manual, with each component crafted to promote their learning” (Grunert O’Brien, 2008, p. 22).

A learning-centered syllabus includes all of the information that a student needs in order to be successful in a particular course. Faculty should begin their syllabus creation by asking, “What would I need to know if this were my first college class?” The learning-centered syllabus is comprehensive in nature. It not only includes information about course policies and assignments, but also about resources that the student can use to be successful in college in general.

Additional Information
Below are a few links that provide additional information about developing course syllabi.

Classroom Realities by Shari Wilson
Featured on
This article details one college professor’s journey to create the perfect syllabus.

Designing a Learning-Centered Syllabus
Center for Teaching and Learning at the University of Delaware
This site contains a variety of resources about learning-centered syllabi. It also provides resources to help faculty think about the function and purpose of their course syllabus.

Learning-Centered Syllabi Workshop
Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning at the University of Iowa
This site provides information about the purposes and benefits of using a learning-centered syllabus. It also provides a comprehensive list of what faculty should consider including in their syllabus.

Accessible Syllabus
This site, supported by the Tulane Center for Engaged Learning and Teaching, provides practical strategies for making your syllabus engaging, effective, and accessible.

Grunert O’Brien, J. (2008). The course syllabus: A learning-centered approach. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.