|Period: Fall 2022 – Winter 2023|
|Instructor: Pierre Desrochers||Office: Davis 3273|
|Lectures: Friday 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM||Lecture rooms: MN 2264 (Fall) MN 2266 (Winter)|
|Phone: (905) 828-5206||E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org|
In-person or video contact hours:
- Office hours are: By appointment.
- If this time is not convenient, please e-mail me to schedule an alternative time.
- E-mail is the primary mode of contact outside of office hours. I do not recommend phoning me at my office.
General information and rules about e-mailing me:
- Please read the course syllabus carefully. Answers about course-specific rules, content and procedures (e.g., how to submit documentation regarding a missed assignment, policies about missed quizzes and tests) are already there.
- Always use your University of Toronto e-mail address (@utoronto.ca) for all course-related communications. E-mails from other domains (e.g., hotmail, Rogers, gmail, yahoo, etc.) may be filtered as spam and will at any rate be ignored.
- You can contact me anytime at email@example.com. I will do my best to answer you promptly during office hours (Monday-Friday 9AM-5PM).
- Always include the course code (e.g., JGE417) as part of your subject line, along with your full name and student number in the body of the e-mail.
- I do not open attachments and will not answer during weekends.
- E-mail should NOT be viewed as an alternative to meeting with the TA or professor during office hours. Nor should e-mail be used as a mechanism to receive private tutorials (especially prior to tests) or to explain material that was covered in missed lectures. Not receiving replies to e-mails from the TA or professor, or not receiving them in time, will not be an acceptable excuse for pleas for extensions to assignment or exam deadlines.
- Students are advised to consult http://www.enough.utoronto.ca/ for information on university policy concerning the appropriate use of information and communication technology.
Questions about departmental and program-related policies and procedures:
- Questions and queries about departmental or program-related rules and procedures should be directed at the Academic Counsellor for Geography/Environment, Darcy McKenzie (firstname.lastname@example.org).
This course provides students with the skills and knowledge required to conduct independent academic research serving as an excellent precursor to graduate studies. Students work on a research project in their area of interest, under the supervision of a faculty member with expertise and research interests in the topic area. Through semi-regular meetings with the course instructor, and in collaboration with the students’ supervisor, students identify potential research questions, acquire methodological skills and research skills appropriate for addressing the research questions, and conduct primary research. Students write up their results in a full-length research report, and present their findings in an open forum to all members of the Department of Geography.
The objectives of this course are to:
- Develop research skills adequate to the addressing of a research question at an advanced level
- Acquire knowledge and skills of methods of data collection and analysis
- Develop and apply critical analytical skills for independent, primary research
- Practice productive, well-organized independent research habits
- Complete research protocols typical of the discipline
- Participate in the pursuit of scholarship through attendance at the Departmental seminar series
- Develop writing and presentation skills appropriate for the communication of advanced academic research
- Produce a thesis incorporating primary research that advances academic knowledge on the topic
The course adopts a seminar format with semi-regular class meetings. The students complete a number of assignments over the course of the year, building up to the final thesis, and the final presentation of each student’s research findings. Throughout the year students make individual 5 minute (PowerPoint) progress presentations in class. Students should meet regularly with their supervisors and should discuss each assignment with their supervisor prior to submission.
The faculty supervisor and the course instructor grade all written work and return assignments with comments to the student. The draft research proposal submission should be graded and returned within one week; all other written assignments within two weeks of submission.
|Draft Research Proposal – Sept. 23||5%|
|Final Research Proposal – Oct. 7||5%|
|Methodology – Nov. 4||10%|
|Literature Review – Nov. 25||15%|
|Results – Feb. 17||10%|
|Discussion – Mar. 3||10%|
|Thesis Draft – Mar. 17||15%|
|Final Thesis Presentation – April 5||10%|
|Final Thesis – April 7||10%|
Late assignments will be subject to a late penalty of 10% per day (including weekends) of the total marks for the assignment. Assignments submitted five calendar days beyond the due date will be assigned a grade of zero. Academic accommodation may be made when an assignment is late for University-accepted, verifiable reasons beyond one’s control; please see the Policies section for additional information.
As per the University Grading Practices Policy, please note that after the methods of evaluation have been made known, the instructor may not change them or their relative weight without the consent of at least a simple majority of the students enrolled in the course. Any changes shall be reported to the division or the department.
Research proposal – Draft submission due September 23, final submission due October 7
Submit as an email attachment to the course instructor and your supervisor by 9:00 AM on the due date. All students should work closely with their supervisor in developing the research proposal. A supervisor should return the draft to the student with comments, critique, and editorial corrections within one week. The final submission should respond to the comments received on the draft submission.
The purpose of the proposal is to articulate your research topic and to provide a timeline for your research. The proposal should be single-space, and no more than one page in length (not including references and research timeline) and should contain the following items:
- Title for your research project
- Description of the project in detail, using clear, plain language (50-150 words)
- Background information to position your research within the disciplinary context, including literature citations (150-250 words)
- Concise statement of the main research objective(s) and a specific research question(s) and/or hypothesis (75-150 words)
- A description of methods/methodology/procedures for the proposed research (50-100 words)
- A description of the main significance or contribution of the proposed research to the field of study (50-100 words)
- References of at least five published academic works relevant to the proposed research (on a separate page)
- Timeline for the research with specific deadlines/deliverables specified in tabular form (on a separate page)
Methodology – due November 4
Discuss the methodology you will use for your research, explain why this methodology is appropriate, and identify limitations and the potential impact on research outcomes. Situate your methodology within an academic context (through reference to studies that employ a similar methodology and academic discussions on methodological approaches).
All student research activities that involve the use of human subjects must comply with the Tri-Campus Policy Statement for Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans (TCPS), and must be reviewed by the local Ethics Review Committee (ERC). Students engaged in research using human subjects (interviews, surveys, questionnaires, focus groups etc.) must obtain ethics approval prior to beginning your research. Submit the completed ethics review form (including all attachments) as an appendix to your methodology. Click here to download the required forms and for submission information to obtain ethics approval.
Literature Review – due November 25
Students complete a literature review of a minimum of 10 pages double-spaced. The review should summarize and discuss main findings of previous research AND identify gaps or limitations within the current body of literature. This will assist in justifying the research question. Class meeting on September 16 and 23 will provide practical guidance on conducting library searches and writing a literature review. It is expected that the supervisor will return the graded literature review by December 16, 2022.
Results – due February 17
Discuss the most important results and provide the supporting evidence. Articulate the relevance of these results to your research project.
Discussion – due March 3
A discussion that situates your research in the context of the current academic literature as articulated in your literature review. Explain the significance of your results and comment on the contributions of your research to the field. A few pages in length (no more or no less than what is relevant. Think of a section in an academic paper.
Thesis – The draft submission due March 17, the final version is due on April 7
Submit both documents digitally by email attachment to the course instructor and the thesis supervisor. The format, organization and length of the thesis should be determined in consultation with the thesis supervisor. It is expected that the draft submission be a complete thesis; it will be graded accordingly. The final submission should incorporate comments received on the draft submission. It is expected that the supervisor will return the graded draft submission by March 31, 2022.
Thesis Presentation – April 5
Each student must prepare and deliver 12 – minute PowerPoint (or equivalent) presentation summarizing the thesis research at a conference-style seminar open to all members of the Department and the University at large.
- Students attend and actively engage in all scheduled course meetings. For many of the course meetings, there are individual short (5 minute) PowerPoint (or equivalent) presentations related to an upcoming written assignment or research progress. Class members will discuss and provide feedback on each presentation. (see the schedule below)
- Each student must attend at least 4 of the Department of Geography seminars (Csillag seminar series, Graduate Student Research Presentations), held on Wednesdays from 12:00pm-1:00pm. The schedule will be posted to the course Quercus site.
Each student will attend all of the final thesis presentations by their fellow students
Consult the following readings for assistance in developing your research proposal, writing your thesis and preparing your final presentation.
Bryman, A. and Bell, E. 2016. Social Research Methods (Canadian Edition). Toronto: Oxford University Press
Hay, I., and Giles, P.2014. Communicating in Geography and the Environmental Sciences. Toronto: Oxford University Press
- Chapter 2: Finding, Evaluating and Using Sources
- Chapter 4: Writing a Research Report
- Chapter 5: Writing an Annotated Bibliography, Summary, or Review
- Chapter 6: Referencing and Language Matters
- Chapter 8: Communicating with Graphs and Tables
- Chapter 9 Communicating with Maps
- Chapter 10: Preparing and Delivering an Oral Presentation
O’Leary, Z. 2010. The essential Guide to Doing your Research Project. Los Angeles: Sage
- Chapter 4: Developing Your Research Question
- Chapter 6: Working with Literature
- Chapter 15: The Challenge of Writing UP
Parsons, T. and Knight, P.G. 2015. How To Do your Dissertation in Geography and Related Disciplines. New York: Routledge.
Read all literature that is pertinent to developing your research proposal, literature review and final thesis.
Note: Dates are bolded if a meeting is scheduled.
Work due is in red if it counts towards your final mark.
|September 9||Course Introduction||2-minute informal summary of project|
|September 16||Guest lecturer: Andrew Nicholson (UTM Library, Coordinator, GIS & Research Data Services). This lecture will take place at the UTM Library Classroom, HMALC 190 (lower level of the building)|
|September 23||Literature Review Writing Work||Draft Research Proposal Due (+ informal PP presentation)|
|September 30||No formal meeting is planned|
|October 7||No formal meeting is planned||Final research proposal due|
|October 14||Reading Week|
|October 21||No formal meeting is planned|
|October 27||No formal meeting is planned|
|November 4||Discussion of Research Process||Methodology assignment due (+ informal PP presentation)|
|November 11||No formal meeting is planned|
|November 18||No formal meeting is planned|
|November 25||No formal meeting is planned||Literature Review Due|
|December 2||Progress Meeting||PowerPoint: Thesis Progress-to-Date|
|December 9||No formal meeting is planned|
|Dec 21-Jan 8||SEMESTER BREAK|
|January 6||No formal meeting is planned|
|January 13||No formal meeting is planned|
|January 20||Progress Meeting||Discussion of Thesis format and PowerPoint: Thesis Progress-to-Date|
|January 27||No formal meeting is planned|
|February 3||Optional Thesis Workshop|
|February 10||No formal meeting is planned|
|February 17||No formal meeting is planned||Results|
|Feb 20-24||Family Day and Reading Week|
|March 3||Discussion / Progress Meeting||Discussion Paper + PowerPoint: Thesis Progress-to-Date|
|March 10||No formal meeting is planned|
|March 17||No formal meeting is planned||Thesis Draft|
|March 24||Presentation Practice Session||Presentation Draft|
|March 31||Presentation Practice Session||Presentation Draft|
|April 5||Final Presentation of Research Findings|
DV 3214, 12 -2 pm (You should aim for a 12-14 minute presentation).
|April 7||Final Thesis|
Use of ChatGPT / Generative AIStudents may choose to use generative artificial intelligence tools as they work through the assignments in this course; this use must be documented in an appendix for each assignment. The documentation should include what tool(s) were used, how they were used, and how the results from the AI were incorporated into the submitted work. Failure to provide an appendix in this case will be penalized.
Student Technology Requirements and Connection ToolsStudents are expected to review and be in compliance with the University’s requirements for online learning (https://www.viceprovoststudents.utoronto.ca/tech-requirements-online-learning/). More resources are available on the UTM Library’s Learn Anywhere website (https://utm.library.utoronto.ca/students/quercus/learn-anywhere). Zoom may be used in the delivery of components of this course. Students are required to register for a UTM Zoom account (https://utoronto.zoom.us) prior to the first lecture. Only authenticated users can join the zoom meetings; please follow the instructions to ensure that your account is authenticated.
Privacy and Use of Course Materials Notifications(Please note that this policy statement does not apply for this course) This course, including your participation, will be recorded on video and will be available to students in the course for viewing remotely and after each session. Course videos and materials belong to your instructor, the University, and/or other sources depending on the specific facts of each situation, and are protected by copyright. Do not download, copy, or share any course or student materials or videos without the explicit permission of the instructor. For questions about recording and use of videos in which you appear please contact your instructor.
Communications PolicyStudents are encouraged to be available during posted office hour(s). Correspondence by email or requesting a meeting outside of the scheduled office hour(s) is also acceptable. In all email correspondence regarding this course, please note the following:
- Always use your University of Toronto email address (…@mail.utoronto.ca) for all course-related communications.
- Include the course code as part of your subject line, and include your full name and student number in the body of the email
- Check the course Quercus site before emailing a question, to make sure that it has not already been answered
Snow daysIf a snow day is declared, all classes are cancelled, whether online or in-person. Campus closures are posted on the Campus Status page. Instructors may not schedule additional “make-up” class meetings beyond the class hours already in the UTM Timetable.
Missed Term WorkLate assignments will be subject to a late penalty of 10% per day (including weekends) of the total marks for the assignment. Assignments submitted five calendar days beyond the due date will be assigned a grade of zero. Term Work – Accommodations
- Accommodations due to late registration into the course will NOT be approved.
- In courses with final exams, there will be no re-writes or make-ups for term tests/quizzes missed for University-accepted, verifiable reasons. Instead, the final exam will be re-weighted by the value of the term test/quiz.
- For in-class or online quiz/test, students CANNOT petition to re-write a quiz/test once it has begun. If you are feeling ill, please do not start the online or in-class test and seek medical attention immediately.
- Extension requests are not permitted for open-book, take home tests. Extensions are built into the time provided for the test.
- Assignments cannot be re-weighted to the final exam.
- For extension requests, maximum extension (where/when possible) is ONE week.
- Extension requests must be made IN ADVANCE of the assignment due date.
- Assignments handed in AFTER the work has been returned to the class cannot be marked for credit.
- Students are responsible in ensuring strong reliable internet connection. Special consideration requests due to poor internet connection (ie. unable to complete online quiz / unable to submit assignment before deadline) will not be accepted.
- Students are expected to back up their work at all times. As such, extension requests due to computer issues (stolen, crashed, damaged etc.) will not be considered.
- Extension requests will NOT be approved for Group Assignments
- It is every student’s responsibility to ensure that their online submission is submitted successfully by the due date. Accommodations will not be made for unsuccessful submissions due to, but not limited to: i) the system timing out ii) submitting the incorrect document(s) iii) poor internet connection / no internet connection etc.
- Holidays and pre-purchased plane tickets, family plans, your friend’s wedding, lack of preparation, or too many other tests/assignments are not acceptable excuses for missing a quiz, a test, an item of term work, or requesting an extension of time. Such requests will be denied.
- For extensions of time beyond the examination period you must submit a petition through the Office of the Registrar. https://www.utm.utoronto.ca/registrar/forms
- You must submit an online Special Consideration Request using the following link: https://utmapp.utm.utoronto.ca/SpecialRequest within 24 hours. Note: The system only supports Microsoft Internet Explorer and Firefox for the time being.
- Students registered with Accessibility Services are also required to submit an online Special Consideration Request using the following link: https://utmapp.utm.utoronto.ca/SpecialRequest
- Email your course instructor.
- ACORN Absence Declaration Tool: Use of this new online declaration does not require supporting documentation and should be used in addition to the missed term work policy outlined in the course syllabus. Students can use this absence declaration tool only once per term. When using this tool, students should expect to receive reasonable academic consideration from their instructor without the need to present additional supporting documentation. In addition, Instructors may exclude one test or quiz from the one-time absence declaration, in which case the student would be required to provide supporting documentation. To submit a request: https://www.utm.utoronto.ca/registrar/utm-absence
Equity Statement and Academic RightsThe University of Toronto is committed to equity and respect for diversity. All members of the learning environment in this course should strive to create an atmosphere of mutual respect. As a course instructor, I will neither condone nor tolerate behaviour that undermines the dignity or self-esteem of any individual in this course and wish to be alerted to any attempt to create an intimidating or hostile environment. It is our collective responsibility to create a space that is inclusive and welcomes discussion. Discrimination, harassment and hate speech will not be tolerated. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns you may contact the UTM Equity and Diversity officer at email@example.com or the University of Toronto Mississauga Students’ Union Vice President Equity at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Department of Geography, Geomatics, and Environment at the University of Toronto Mississauga strives to uphold a commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusiveness which requires that we:
- address the complexity of our disciplines’ histories, and
- hold ourselves and others to account in order to challenge how we, as individuals and as part of larger institutions, continue to perpetuate inequity and injustice as we seek to create a more equitable and inclusive future.
Academic RightsYou, as a student at UTM, have the right to:
- Receive a syllabus by the first day of class.
- Rely upon a syllabus once a course is started. An instructor may only change marks’ assignments by following the University Assessment and Grading Practices Policy provision 1.3.
- Refuse to use plagiarism detection tool (you must be offered an alternative form of submission).
- Have access to your instructor for consultation during a course or follow up with the department chair if the instructor is unavailable.
- Ask the person who marked your term work for a re-evaluation if you feel it was not fairly graded. You have up to one month from the date of return of the item to inquire about the mark. If you are not satisfied with a re-evaluation, you may appeal to the instructor in charge of the course if the instructor did not mark the work. If your work is remarked, you must accept the resulting mark. You may only appeal a mark beyond the instructor if the term work was worth at least 20% of the course mark.
- Receive at least one significant mark (15% for H courses, 25% for Y courses) before the last day you can drop a course for H courses, and the last day of classes in the first week of January for Y courses taught in the Fall/Winter terms.
- Submit handwritten essays so long as they are neatly written.
- Have no assignment worth 100% of your final grade.
- Not have a term test worth 25% or more in the last two weeks of class.
- Retain intellectual property rights to your research.
- Receive all your assignments once graded.
- View your final exams. To see a final exam, you must submit an online Exam Reproduction Request within 6 months of the exam. There is a small non-refundable fee.
- Privacy of your final grades.
- Arrange for representation from Downtown Legal Services (DLS), a representative from the UTM Students’ Union (UTMSU), and/or other forms of support if you are charged with an academic offence.
Academic Integrity/Honesty or Academic OffensesIt is your responsibility as a student at the University of Toronto to familiarize yourself with, and adhere to, both the Code of Student Conduct and the Code of Behaviour on Academic Matters. This means, first and foremost, that you should read them carefully.
- The Code of Student Conduct is available from the U of T Mississauga website (Registrar > Academic Calendar > Codes and Policies) or in your print version of the Academic Calendar.
- The Code of Behaviour on Academic Matters is available from the U of T Mississauga website (Registrar > Academic Calendar > Codes and Policies) or in your print version of the Academic Calendar.
- Accessing unauthorized resources (search engines, chat rooms, Reddit, etc.) for assessments.
- Using technological aids (e.g. software) beyond what is listed as permitted in an assessment.
- Posting test, essay, or exam questions to message boards or social media.
- Creating, accessing, and sharing assessment questions and answers in virtual “course groups.”
- Working collaboratively, in-person or online, with others on assessments that are expected to be completed individually.
University Plagiarism Detection Tool Conditions of Use Statement“Normally, students will be required to submit their course essays to the University’s plagiarism detection tool for a review of textual similarity and detection of possible plagiarism. In doing so, students will allow their essays to be included as source documents in the tool’s reference database, where they will be used solely for the purpose of detecting plagiarism. The terms that apply to the University’s use of this tool are described on the Centre for Teaching Support & Innovation web site (https://uoft.me/pdt-faq).”
How to Query or Challenge a MarkPlease note that, according to UTM policy, you have one month from the date an item is returned to you, during which time you may query the mark or submit the item for remarking. Contact the Course Instructor in person or by email (@utoronto.ca) for all queries about course marks, or if you wish to challenge a mark. Absolutely no item will be remarked after the one-month period has passed. Material submitted for remarking must be accompanied by a brief written explanation detailing your reasons for dissatisfaction with the original mark (such as an addition error, or something you think the marker may have missed). The item may be returned first to the TA who originally marked it. If you are still dissatisfied, it may be passed on to the Course Instructor for reconsideration. If a remarking is granted by an instructor, the student must accept the resulting mark as the new mark, whether it goes up or down or remains the same.
AccessibilityStudents with diverse learning styles and needs are welcome in our courses. In particular, if you have a disability/health consideration that may require accommodations, please approach UTM’s Accessibility Services as soon as possible. Accessibility staff (located in room 2037B, Davis Building) are available by appointment to assess specific needs, provide referrals, and arrange appropriate accommodations. Please call 905-569-4699 or email email@example.com. The sooner you let UTM’s Accessibility Services know your needs, the quicker they can assist you in achieving your learning goals.
Policy on Religious ObservancesAs noted in the Policy on Scheduling of Classes and Examinations and Other Accommodations for Religious Observances, the following provisions are included:
- “It is the policy of the University of Toronto to arrange reasonable accommodation of the needs of students who observe religious holy days other than those already accommodated by ordinary scheduling and statutory holidays.
- Students have a responsibility to alert members of the teaching staff in a timely fashion to upcoming religious observances and anticipated absences. Instructors will make every reasonable effort to avoid scheduling tests, examinations or other compulsory activities at these times. If compulsory activities are unavoidable, every reasonable opportunity should be given to these students to make up work that they miss, particularly in courses involving laboratory work. When the scheduling of tests or examinations cannot be avoided, students should be informed of the procedure to be followed to arrange to write at an alternate time.
- It is most important that no student be seriously disadvantaged because of her or his religious observances. However, in the scheduling of academic and other activities, it is also important to ensure that the accommodation of one group does not seriously disadvantage other groups within the University community.”
- With respect to minimum advance notice, the Policy provides that “Students have a responsibility to alert members of the teaching staff in a timely fashion to upcoming religious observances and anticipated absences.” Since students would normally be aware of upcoming religious observances as well as examination schedules in advance, a minimum of three weeks advance notice will be considered sufficient.
- More information and some dates of potential relevance for the U of T community are available at viceprovoststudents.utoronto.ca/publicationsandpolicies/guidelines/religiousobservances.htm.
- As with any academic accommodation request, students must submit an on-line Special Consideration Request @ https://utmapp.utm.utoronto.ca/SpecialRequest
RGASC StatementThe Robert Gillespie Academic Skills Centre (RGASC) is located in Room 3251 on the third floor of the Maanjiwe nendamowinan Building. The RGASC offers individual consultations, workshops (many CCR-accredited), and a wide range of programs to help students identify and develop the academic skills they need for success in their studies. Visit the RGASC website to explore their online resources, book an in-person or online appointment, or learn about other programming such as Writing Retreats, the Program for Accessing Research Training (PART), Mathematics and Numeracy Support, and dedicated resources for English Language Learners.
UTM Library’s StatementThe University of Toronto Libraries connect students with the world-class collections needed to successfully conduct research and complete assignments. At the UTM Library, located within the Hazel McCallion Academic Learning Centre, students will find dedicated support for their courses:
- Reference and Research Help via in-person drop-in and the Ask a Librarian virtual chat service
- Research guides developed by subject expert liaison librarians, plus individual consultations on request
- Workshops on navigating databases, finding relevant articles, using software, citing correctly, and more