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The syllabus is a small place to start bringing students and faculty members back together... If students could be persuaded that we are really interested in their understanding the materials we offer, that we support their efforts to master it, and that we take their intellectual struggles seriously, they might respond by becoming involved in our courses, by trying to live up to our expectations, and by appreciating our concern.

- Rubin, “Professors, Students, and the Syllabus,” Chronicle of Higher Education

Your syllabus is one of THE most important documents you create for your class, serving as an agreement between you and your students. It conveys a first and lasting impression of you and the course you've designed. And it documents and shares your beliefs about teaching. Even very good syllabi have incomplete elements that could bear revision before you next teach the course.

Your syllabus is a living, creative document.

How to Use the Tutorial

One of the true strengths of this tutorial is the number of high quality examples we showcase. Professors from throughout the University and across disciplines have contributed their syllabi in an effort to help you learn from their experience. (For additional examples of syllabi organized by discipline, see the MIT Open CourseWare page: You are free to use any text within these pages, and we hope you'll share your syllabi with us as we continue to enhance this site.

The tutorial is comprised of nine sections which you can access by clicking the links to the left. We have arranged these in a typical sequence that might appear on anyone's syllabus, but we invite you to skip around and find the areas most germaine to your needs and discipline.

Contact Us

If you have any comments or questions about this tutorial, please email us at