Syllabus Assistance

The syllabus is a complex and ever-changing document. The CTL does not own or mandate any part of it. Instead, we hope to supply as much information around it as possible, including the guidelines from the faculty handbook and from individual colleges, so you can make informed decisions. We also have supplementary resources, such as course design maps, to aid in the development of courses. 

Syllabus Responsibilities according to the Faculty Handbook

"The course syllabus is a very important document constituting an implicit contract between the faculty member and the students.  Each faculty member must provide the students in each class with a course syllabus within the first week of the course.  The syllabus will normally include:

  • a statement of course objectives and requirements;
  • an outline of course topics, including assignments, exams, and paper due dates;
  • a statement of the particular attendance policy for the course;
  • a statement of the methods by which the student will be graded;
  • reference to the University’s policy and procedure on academic honesty in the student handbook;
  • the instructor’s office location, office hours, and telephone extension number. 

Copies of the course syllabus for each course must be given to the department chair at the beginning of each semester.  The department chair will maintain a complete file of syllabi by course for a period of four years.  This file will be available to the dean of the school or college and to the Vice President for Academic Affairs, to faculty members for comparison, to students for reference, to evaluation teams for review, and to the library staff for assisting faculty and students in relating library holdings and services to the University’s curriculum." 

GPEC Syllabus Template

GPEC Syllabus Template (Graduate, updated 8/2019). 

The Graduate and Professional Education Committee developed the above syllabus template in 2017. All elements of this graduate syllabus are required for any GPEC submission in order to evaluate course and program changes. Note that your school may have additional requirements or suggestions. 

Online/Blended Syllabus Template from Digital Learning

Distance Learning Syllabus Template (Updated 8/2018)

This template was developed in part by our instructional designer, Minyan He, to help with the development of online and blended courses that will be purchased by the university. These courses go through a lengthy contractual process and must meet Quality Matters standards. If you are unsure whether this process pertains to one of your courses, then it probably doesn't!


College of Arts and Sciences Syllabus and Checklist

CAS Syllabus Template (updated 1/25/2019)

CAS Checklist (updated 2/07/2019)

This syllabus and checklist was distributed by Dean Jessica Lavariega-Montforti's office in August 2018, and were both updated 1/25/2019. Please note that many of the university policy items have been moved to Blackboard and therefore do not need to be in the syllabus.  If you have any questions about the syllabus or the checklist, please contact Chad Barber, Associate Dean of Undergraduate Education, at or x3873. 

 Course Design Maps 

Course Design Map Full

The Full Course Design Map (CDM) helps instructors align the goals of their program or college, their weekly student learning outcomes (WSLOs), course readings, activities, and assessments. 

Course Design in No Time, A Simplified CDM

This form was inspired by Chavella Pittman’s talk on Teaching in No Time, through the National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity, in combination with our original CDM. It lists the 8 university-wide student learning outcomes (SLOs) and walks you through aligning those with activities and assessments. 

3-Day, One Week Design Map 

This document provides a format for aligning a single week in a class that meets three times a week, and includes space for pre and post work.  

Carnegie Hours

Carnegie Hours, or Credit Hours, are a way of ensuring that a 3-credit course at one university requires a similar amount of time and effort--and therefore has a similar academic weight--as a 3-credit course at another university. Part of WASC accreditation is dedicated to making sure that we are in compliance with these federal standards. 


TotalCarnegie Hours







One (1) Credit Course or Lab





Two (2) Credit Course or Lab





Three (3) Credit Course or Lab





Four (4) Credit Course of Lab





TUG Proposal Syllabus Statement

The Academic Standards Committee created this statement, which has been included in the Syllabus template, in April 2018. 

Carnegie Hours Sample Tables

This document gives more information on Carnegie Hours. It is particularly helpful for faculty teaching in compressed formats, like during the summer, or teaching a different number of credits.  


Student Learning Outcomes

Student learning outcomes, or SLOs, are clearly stated knowledge, skills, attitude, and/or competency goals that students are expected to acquire. They can be at the university level, the program level, the course level, the week level, or individual class or module level. Strong student learning outcomes statements are:

  • Consistent with institutional level and/or program level and course requirements
  • Specific and measurable
  • Tied to the student’s accomplishments, not what the instructor provided

According to the 2015 WASC Report "Cal Lutheran should continue its progress in the assessment of student learning with a consistent practice of including institutional level learning outcomes (ISLOs) and program level outcomes (PLOs) into course syllabi. The team found in interviews that this practice is currently inconsistently applied across courses and programs. This practice raises awareness of the need for tying course level outcomes (CLOs), to PLOs and ISLOs in an intentional and purposeful way, rather than the current practice of “infusing” courses and programs with learning outcomes (CFR 2.3-4, 2.6)."

Student Learning Outcomes

This guide will give you and overview of what SLOs are, and how to write strong ones. Also take a look at the Course Design in No Time handout to help you align those weekly SLOs with the rest of the course content.