Syllabus for SPA-101



Elementary Spanish I is designed for students with little or no knowledge of the Spanish language. It focuses on the development of the four basic language skills: listening, speaking, reading, and writing. In addition, students will develop an appreciation of the Hispanic culture throughout this course through readings, forum discussions, and a group cultural project.



After completing this course, you should be able to:

CO1        Introduce yourself and exchange personal information such as name, age, nationality, and profession.

CO2        Describe yourself and others giving information about personality, appearance, and family relationships.

CO3        Ask and answer questions on topics such as everyday activities, daily routine, meals, interests, and hobbies.

CO4         Ask and answer where one is are going; ask and give directions; describe cities and towns.

CO5        Ask for and give the time; ask and answer what one does in their free time.

CO6        Compare and contrast people and things.

CO7        Explain and discuss Hispanic countries, culture, and people

CO8        Read and comprehend elementary Spanish materials written for a second language learner.


You will need the following materials to do the work of the course. Follow the instructions in order to purchase the access card and eBook.

Access card for McGraw-Hill Connect with Conéctate

eBook with Workbook/Lab Manual (WBLM), LearnSmart, and Connect access card.

ISBN-13: 978-0077604059

The purchase of the Connect access card includes access to the Conéctate eBook. You can purchase the access card by following these instructions:

Instructions for Buying a Connect Access Card through Moodle 


If you’d like to purchase your access card early (before you have access to Moodle), you can visit McGraw-Hill’s site and select the 24-month digital format:

Note: If you choose to purchase the Connect access card directly from McGraw-Hill’s website, you will only have access to the eBook; you will not have access to your section’s Connect site and assignments until you have access to Moodle. Do not try to register for any Connect sections until you have access to Moodle.

Once you purchase your card, you will have to create an account with McGraw-Hill. When you have access to Moodle, click on the McGraw-Hill Connect plugin and use your McGraw-Hill account information to login.

Supplementary Materials


Elementary Spanish I is a three-credit, online course consisting of five modules. Modules include an overview, topics, learning objectives, study materials, and activities. Module titles are listed below.


For your formal work in the course, you are required to participate in online discussion forums, complete written assignments, complete a variety of online practice exercises (via McGraw-Hill Connect), take three proctored examinations, and complete a final project. See below for details.

Effective language courses require consistent reinforcement; and thus, this course includes a number of sequential assignments and exercises. It is extremely important that you consistently consult the Course Calendar for assignment due dates and exam dates.

Discussion Forums

Elementary Spanish I requires you to participate in online class discussions. In addition to an ungraded Introductions Forum in Week 1, you are required to participate in five graded online discussions.

Communication with the mentor and among fellow students is a critical component of online learning. Participation in online discussions involves two distinct activities: an initial response to a posted question (discussion thread) and at least two subsequent comments on classmates' responses. Meaningful participation is relevant to the content, adds value, and advances the discussion. Comments such as "I agree" and "ditto" are not considered value-adding participation. Therefore, when you agree or disagree with a classmate, the reading, or your mentor, state and support your agreement or disagreement. You will be evaluated on the quality and quantity of your participation. Responses and comments should be properly proofread and edited, professional, and respectful.

For posting guidelines and help with discussion forums, please see the Student Handbook located within the General Information page of the course website.

Connect Assignments

Throughout this course, you will be given assignments using the online learning tool, Connect, from McGraw-Hill. This website provides a variety of interactive activities, exercises, and assessments that pair with your textbook. It is extremely important that you refer to the Course Calendar for due dates for these activities.

You can access this section’s Connect course by clicking on the MH Connect Plugin in Moodle.

Note: Some of the assignments require the use of Java, which is not available through Google Chrome. In order to complete Connect assignments, it’s recommended that you use Firefox and make sure that you have the latest edition of Java downloaded.

Written Assignments

You are required to complete five written assignments. The written assignments are on a variety of topics associated with the course modules. These exercises provide you with an opportunity to practice writing in Spanish. It is important that if you are to use an online dictionary to aide you in your writing, you are using a trustworthy source and not an online translator. See the online Scalar book for a list of recommended dictionaries.

Wiki Assignment

In Module 2, you will create a wiki in Moodle in order to collaborate with your classmates and practice new vocabulary presented throughout the unit. A wiki is an online space that enables you to add content to shared pages and respond to others using the comments feature at the bottom of each page. A class wiki has been set up for this course and can be found in Moodle.

Oral Examinations

You are required to take two Spanish oral examinations in which you will respond to a prompt speaking in Spanish. The exam will assess your ability to have a conversation by giving and asking for information. You will complete this exam in an Edison Live! meeting with your mentor.

Written Examinations

You are required to take three proctored online examinations. Each exam requires that you use the University's Online Proctor Service (OPS). Please refer to the Examinations and Proctors section of the Online Student Handbook (see General Information area of the course website) for further information about scheduling and taking online exams and for all exam policies and procedures. You are strongly advised to schedule your exam within the first week of the semester.

Online exams are administered through the course website. Consult the Course Calendar for the official dates of exam weeks.

Written Exams 1 and 2

Written Exams 1 and 2 will consist of objective questions (multiple choice, matching, etc.) and some fill-in-the-blank questions. You will have one hour to complete each exam. For a list of key concepts that may appear on your exams, refer to the study guides available in the Examinations section of the course website.

Written Exam 3

Written Exam 3 will consist of objective questions (multiple choice, matching, etc.), fill-in-the-blank, and a writing section. You will have one hour to complete this exam. For a list of key concepts that may appear on your exam, refer to the study guide available in the Examinations section of the course website.

Statement about Cheating

You are on your honor not to cheat during the exam. Cheating means:

If there is evidence that you have cheated or plagiarized in your exam, the exam will be declared invalid, and you will fail the course.

Final Cultural Project: Student-Led Teaching of the Culture of the Spanish Speaking World

The Final Project for this course consists of a PowerPoint Presentation in English on a Spanish-speaking country. You will work in groups to research a country and then present it to your classmates during an Edison Live! conference session. Consult the Course Calendar for due dates and the Final Project Guidelines in Moodle for more information regarding the Final Project.


Your grade in the course will be determined as follows:


All activities will receive a numerical grade of 0–100. You will receive a score of 0 for any work not submitted. Your final grade in the course will be a letter grade. Letter grade equivalents for numerical grades are as follows:






























Below 60

To receive credit for the course, you must earn a letter grade of C or better (for an area of study course) or D or better (for a course not in your area of study), based on the weighted average of all assigned course work (e.g., exams, assignments, discussion postings).


First Steps to Success

To succeed in this course, take the following first steps:

Study Tips

Consider the following study tips for success:


Thomas Edison State University is committed to maintaining academic quality, excellence, and honesty. The University expects all members of its community to share the commitment to academic integrity, an essential component of a quality academic experience.

Students at Thomas Edison State University are expected to exhibit the highest level of academic citizenship. In particular, students are expected to read and follow all policies, procedures, and program information guidelines contained in publications; pursue their learning goals with honesty and integrity; demonstrate that they are progressing satisfactorily and in a timely fashion by meeting course deadlines and following outlined procedures; observe a code of mutual respect in dealing with mentors, staff, and other students; behave in a manner consistent with the standards and codes of the profession in which they are practicing; keep official records updated regarding changes in name, address, telephone number, or e-mail address; and meet financial obligations in a timely manner. Students not practicing good academic citizenship may be subject to disciplinary action including suspension, dismissal, or financial holds on records.

All members of the University community are responsible for reviewing the Academic Code of Conduct Policy in the University Catalog and online at

Academic Dishonesty

Thomas Edison State University expects all of its students to approach their education with academic integrity—the pursuit of scholarly activity free from fraud and deception. All mentors and administrative staff members at the University insist on strict standards of academic honesty in all courses. Academic dishonesty undermines this objective. Academic dishonesty can take the following forms:


Thomas Edison State University is committed to helping students understand the seriousness of plagiarism, which is defined as using the work and ideas of others without proper citation. The University takes a strong stance against plagiarism, and students found to be plagiarizing are subject to discipline under the academic code of conduct policy.

If you copy phrases, sentences, paragraphs, or whole documents word-for-word—or if you paraphrase by changing a word here and there—without identifying the author, or without identifying it as a direct quote, then you are plagiarizing. Please keep in mind that this type of identification applies to Internet sources as well as to print-based sources. Copying and pasting from the Internet, without using quotation marks and without acknowledging sources, constitutes plagiarism. (For information about how to cite Internet sources, see Online Student Handbook > Academic Standards > Citing Sources.)

Accidentally copying the words and ideas of another writer does not excuse the charge of plagiarism. It is easy to jot down notes and ideas from many sources and then write your own paper without knowing which words are your own and which are someone else’s. It is more difficult to keep track of each and every source. However, the conscientious writer who wishes to avoid plagiarizing never fails to keep careful track of sources.

Always be aware that if you write without acknowledging the sources of your ideas, you run the risk of being charged with plagiarism.

Clearly, plagiarism, no matter the degree of intent to deceive, defeats the purpose of education. If you plagiarize deliberately, you are not educating yourself, and you are wasting your time on courses meant to improve your skills. If you plagiarize through carelessness, you are deceiving yourself.

For examples of unintentional plagiarism, advice on when to quote and when to paraphrase, and information about writing assistance and originality report checking, click the links provided below.

Examples of Unintentional Plagiarism

When to Quote and When to Paraphrase

Writing Assistance at Smarthinking

Originality Report Checking at Turnitin

Disciplinary Process for Plagiarism

Acts of both intentional and unintentional plagiarism violate the Academic Code of Conduct.

If an incident of plagiarism is an isolated minor oversight or an obvious result of ignorance of proper citation requirements, the mentor may handle the matter as a learning exercise. Appropriate consequences may include the completion of tutorials, assignment rewrites, or any other reasonable learning tool in addition to a lower grade for the assignment or course. The mentor will notify the student and appropriate dean of the consequence by e-mail.

If the plagiarism appears intentional and/or is more than an isolated incident, the mentor will refer the matter to the appropriate dean, who will gather information about the violation(s) from the mentor and student, as necessary. The dean will review the matter and notify the student in writing of the specifics of the charge and the sanction to be imposed.

Possible sanctions include:

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