Technology policy


The use of electronic devices is not only permitted in this course—in many instances, it will be necessary [1. This does not mean that personal ownership of such a device is required for this course. We have access to a number of computer labs on campus, and can arrange to have our class meetings in one of them when needed.]. I do not ordinarily police your gadget use in class, even when those gadgets aren’t needed for a specific class activity. I do, however, ask that you be courteous. Please be sure that your cell phone is set to silent (not vibrate, which can actually be quite loud, especially if the phone happens to be in the same bag as your books), and that your use of any devices does not become a distraction to yourself or others. (Bear in mind that anyone sitting near you can probably see what’s on your computer or tablet screen. Also, remember that multitasking while maintaining focus is really difficult. If you’re texting, shopping, or catching up on personal email, you’re probably missing a lot of what’s going on in class.)

I reserve the right to request that you put your device(s) away if I get the sense that you’re not paying attention or that you’re distracting those around you.


Email is the official means of communication at Saint Mary’s College, and all official communications from the College will be sent to your address. It is therefore essential that you check that address on a regular basis (I would strongly recommend you check it daily during the work week). If you fail to do so, you may miss vital information.

Please use your address for all communications regarding this course. (If you have other email addresses and would like to be able to check them all in one central location, please see me. I can make a few suggestions about ways to do that.)

What you may expect when you email me:

I check my email at least once or twice a day during normal business hours, Monday through Friday, and I will ordinarily respond within 48 hours of receiving a message. If it’s been longer than that and you haven’t received a response, please follow up; it’s possible that the message didn’t get through for some reason.

I do not check my email on Sundays, and only occasionally on Saturdays, so I can’t guarantee that I’ll see any messages sent later than Friday afternoon prior to late Monday morning.