Common Course Description for USC 102

This is the “Common Course Description,” your instructor/advisor will provide you with a syllabus for your class for this semester.

USC 102 – Introduction to University Education II Spring 2018

University College Exploratory Studies


Prerequisite: USC 101 or permission of instructor

Corequisite: None

This course does not meet a GEP requirement

In their first year at NC State University, all Exploratory Studies students must take two one-hour, letter-graded courses: Introduction to University Education I (USC 101 in the fall semester) and Introduction to University Education II (USC 102 in the spring semester). Your instructor for this course is your academic advisor, and that arrangement gives you weekly contact with him or her. You also meet individually with your advisor at least twice each semester.

Exploratory Studies advisors and instructors are committed to being prepared for class, to grading fairly, and to being available to help students with their questions and concerns about the course and about advising issues. You should be committed to putting your best effort into your work for this class, including your out-of-class assignments, class discussions and activities, and co-curricular activities.


Learning Outcomes for USC 102

Upon completion of this course, students will

  1. Be able to analyze various components of the academic major and career decision process, drawing on both their personal experience and research; apply these findings to what they currently know about themselves and majors/careers; compare their options; and outline their next steps of action
  2. Know how to conduct a career informational interview
  3. Know how to use the online Pack Planner tool
  4. Understand the University Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) policy
  5. Be more aware of their own attitudes and experiences with respect to diversity


Academic Integrity
Students are required to comply with the university policy on academic integrity in the Code of Student Conduct found at

Your name on any assignment you submit to your USC 101 instructor means that you neither gave nor received unauthorized aid when you completed the assignment.

All academic integrity violations will be sent to Student Conduct. For violations on assignments and activities, at a minimum, you will earn zero points for the assignment; other sanctions are possible, including failing the course. Your textbook contains more information about Academic Integrity.


Supporting Fellow Students in Distress

As members of the NC State Wolfpack community, we each share a personal responsibility to express concern for one another and to ensure that this classroom and the campus as a whole are a good and safe environment for learning. If you are worried about a fellow classmate, you can get them help through the NC State Students of Concern website: Here you can get good info and send in a report about a fellow student you’re concerned about.


Policy on Discrimination

NC State University provides equality of opportunity in education and employment for all students and employees. Accordingly, NC State affirms its commitment to maintain a work environment for all employees and an academic environment for all students that is free from all forms of discrimination. Discrimination based on race, color, religion, creed, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, or sexual orientation is a violation of state and federal law and/or NC State University policy and will not be tolerated. Harassment of any person (either in the form of quid pro quo or creation of a hostile environment) based on race, color, religion, creed, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, or sexual orientation also is a violation of state and federal law and/or NC State University policy and will not be tolerated. Retaliation against any person who complains about discrimination is also prohibited. NC State’s policies and regulations covering discrimination, harassment, and retaliation may be accessed at Any person who feels that he or she has been the subject of prohibited discrimination, harassment, or retaliation should contact the Office for Institutional Equity and Diversity at 919-515-3148.


Students with Disabilities

Reasonable accommodations will be made for students with verifiable disabilities. In order to take advantage of available accommodations, students must register with the Disability Services Office at the Student Health Center, Campus Box 7509, 919-515-7653. For more information on NC State’s policy on working with students with disabilities, please see the Academic Accommodations for Students with Disabilities Regulation (REG02.20.01) at



Students will be required to provide their own transportation if they choose a co-curricular activity that is off campus. However, all co-curricular activities planned for this course will have on-campus options.



You will earn a letter grade (A, B, C, D, or F with plus/minus grading) in USC 102, a one-hour course. Grading will be based on a point system (maximum points = 300). Neither USC 101 nor USC 102 may be taken for credit only (S/U); you must take the course for a letter grade.





Regular class attendance in any college course is essential for success, and USC 102 is no exception. The basic attendance policy for USC 102 follows the University regulation for attendance. Attendance expectations for this course are as follows:

If at the end of the term you have more than two absences, the final course grade will be lowered one letter grade for each additional absence. For example, if you have an “A” in the course but have three absences, then your semester letter grade will be reduced to a “B;” for four absences, the final grade will become a “C;” for five absences a “D,” etc. If you miss a class session, it is your responsibility to obtain information on any class assignments. If you miss in-class work due to an absence you may not be able to earn full credit for the assignment.

There may be exceptions if all absences are excused according to the University policy. Your instructor may allow for make-up work in the case of excused absences. If you have an excused absence it is your responsibility to notify your instructor as soon as possible. The NCSU policy on excused absences, including those for religious observances, is described at the following URL:


Course Text

The textbook for both USC 101 and USC 102 is THE (Transition to Higher Education) Workbook (The 2017-2018 edition is only available at the University Bookstore). The price of the book – $65.75 – includes $24.55 to cover the cost of testing and personalized reports for the Strong Interest Inventory® assessment, and the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® instrument. If you have financial difficulties and cannot afford a textbook, speak with your advisor right away.



Your instructor will provide you a detailed list of assignments with their due dates and point values. Some of your assignments are in THE Workbook, but your instructor will give most of them to you. However, due to the cost of photocopying, your instructor might not give you paper copies of your assignments. Your instructor will explain how you can locate your assignments and will provide them in enough time to complete them. As with any class, students in USC 102 have the responsibility to know how to find their assignments and to ask their instructor about any concerns or questions regarding an assignment. Always keep a copy of the work you turn in for this or for any class, and always save returned work.

Late assignments: your instructor will inform you of his or her policy regarding late work. Late work policies vary by instructor.


Electronically-Hosted Course Components

Students may be required to disclose personally identifiable information to other students in the course, via electronic tools like email or web-postings, where relevant to the course. Examples include online discussions of class topics, and posting of student coursework. All students are expected to respect the privacy of each other by not sharing or using such information outside the course. Electronically-hosted Components: Moodle.


Significant Assignments

Career Informational Interview

This assignment will familiarize you with a particular career and help you see how this career is connected to the majors you are considering. It will also give you a good model for informational interviews and allow you to practice networking and interviewing skills. Information about Career Informational Interviews is available on pages 90-91 of THE Workbook. Note that your instructor will give you additional guidelines.


Resume Assignment

A resume documents your skills and experiences. For this assignment you will create a resume with a professional appearance that you can use for summer jobs, internships, scholarships, and so on. Your instructor will give you additional details about this assignment.


Personal Reflection on Major and Career Decision-Making

The personal reflection is the final project of the spring semester. It gives you an opportunity to reflect on your first year at NC State, highlighting and bringing together what you have done this year to make an informed decision about your future. In it, you will think about your first year experience and the assignments and activities in USC 101 and USC 102, explain where you are in the process of deciding about your major and some possible careers, how you got to this point in your decision making, and what you expect to do next. Your instructor will give you more details.


Exploratory Studies Co-Curricular Events

Learning within the university is not limited to attending class and completing assignments. Many opportunities for learning and discovery occur outside of class. This extended learning is called “co-curricular” learning. You are required to attend the following co-curricular events:


Career Connections

Scheduled for TBA (a Saturday in March of 2018)

This event takes students from the fall Major Exploration Series, where they learned about the many majors available at the University, to an experience where they can learn about careers in different disciplines. Working professionals will provide insight into why they chose their undergraduate major, their career path, and perspectives about their field (employment trends, education and skills needed, etc.)


Exploratory Studies Forum Requirement

You must select one of two options for the Forum Requirement as described below.

1.    Individualized Forum Contract

In order to provide a more in-depth experience, students are encouraged to submit their own individualized plan of involvement for the spring semester. Examples include:

  • Joining and becoming an active member in a student organization
  • Volunteering weekly for an organization
  • Attending a university-sponsored workshop series

These are only examples, so feel free to design your own experience. Your proposal should incorporate the spirit of the Forum Series and must be approved by your instructor. Your proposal should also explain clearly how your plan covers either Diversity/Global Knowledge or Educational/Career Enrichment. You must submit your contract and receive approval from your instructor by their specified deadline.


2.    Forum Event Attendance and Reflection

The purpose of Forum events is for students to engage in the NC State and Raleigh community, as well as investigate and explore their interests. Students in USC 102 are required to attend three Forum events each semester, one of those events must be an Educational event and one must be a Diversity event. Educational events are designed to provide greater information about an educational or career field. Diversity events will introduce you to areas of diversity and global knowledge, helping you understand the world and your place in it. You will also consider differences in culture, identity, and community at NC State. Educational and Diversity events are identified on the Forum calendar posted at: Other events on the calendar may be identified as “student choice” events. These can be wellness oriented, arts events or even events that don’t clearly fit into one of our designated categories.

Important: If you wish to attend an event that is not on the Forum calendar, you MUST get approval from your instructor in advance.


To receive credit for attending a Forum event, you must submit a Forum report via your class Moodle.

  • A Forum report must be a thoughtful reflection on the event that answers all of the questions asked about the event.
  • Each forum is 20 points, for a total of 60 points for the Forum series each semester.
  • If you are a member of the University Scholars program, you are eligible to submit a Forum report for the events you attend as requirements for that program.
  • Be sure you know your instructor’s due date for Forum report deadlines.
  • If you have to buy a ticket for an event, you are responsible for that cost.


Superforum Events

During the semester Exploratory Studies may designate a “Superforum Event” that focuses on an issue that is significant to the NC State community or to the larger community outside the University. In the past, Superforum Events included a panel and discussion on the causes and consequences of the 9/11 attacks and an interactive workshop on diversity. A Superforum Event can fulfill one of your three required Forum events. Because the topics are so significant, you can earn additional credit (25 points instead of 20 points) for attending the event and submitting a thoughtful report. However, even if you attend a Superforum, you are still required to attend 3 events during the semester.


Time Blocks for Exploratory Studies Forum Events

If you are not fulfilling the Contract option for your Forum requirement, you must attend and report on three forum events within three forum time blocks. Your instructor will give due dates for attending each of the three events and due dates for turning in the reports. Check the syllabus and schedule for your section of USC 102.



Incomplete Grades

If an extended deadline is not authorized by the instructor or department, an unfinished incomplete grade will automatically change to an F after either (a) the end of the next regular semester in which the student is enrolled (not including summer sessions), or (b) the end of 12 months if the student is not enrolled, whichever is shorter. Incompletes that change to F will count as an attempted course on transcripts. It is the student’s responsibility to initiate the request for an incomplete grade. The full university policy on incomplete grades is located at


Graded Items

Assignments and ActivitiesPoint Value
Pack PlannerVariable
Career Connections40 minimum
Career Informational Interview40 minimum
Personal Reflection30 minimum
Forum-Student Choice20
Additional assignments, vary by instructorVariable


Course Grading Scale

A grades B grades C grades D grades F grades
291 ≤  A+ ≤ 300 261 ≤ B+ < 270 231 ≤ C+ < 240 200 ≤ D+ < 210 0 ≤ F < 180
279 ≤ A < 291 249 ≤ B < 261 219 ≤ C < 231 189 ≤ D < 200
270 ≤ A- < 279 240 ≤ B- < 249 210 ≤ C- < 219 180 ≤ D- < 189


You may find that you do not have exactly the same assignments as students in another section of USC 102, and similar assignments may have different point values in different sections of the course. However, all assignments and activities are designed to help you make a smooth transition from high school to college, learn how to succeed academically, learn about yourself, and explore majors and careers.


Course Schedule

Your instructor will provide a projected schedule of reading assignments & projected schedule of any homework due dates, quizzes, and tests.