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SPAN 1010 Syllabus

Course Syllabus

SPAN 1010 - Beginning Spanish I

3 Credit Hours

Course Information

Course Description:

Spanish 1010 is the first course of the beginning level of Spanish, which is designed to provide college students with a foundation in the following basic skills: speaking, listening, reading, writing and cultural understanding.

The Spanish I course introduces basic vocabulary and grammatical structures. Students will develop listening, reading, writing, and speaking skills through a variety of interactive audio and video activities. Authentic video and audio material will be used as well as online tutorials for grammar lesson explanations. Students will learn cultural aspects of the Spanish-speaking world and will communicate with the instructor and classmates via discussion board and occasionally D2L email.

Course Outcomes:

Upon successful completion of the course the student will be able to:

  • Use correct pronunciation, which, even if not perfect, does not obscure meaning
  • Ask and answer simple questions in Spanish demonstrating understanding of both spoken and written Spanish
  • Communicate using correct grammatical structures and vocabulary in spoken and written Spanish to convey intended meaning
  • Demonstrate ability to listen to spoken Spanish at this level for general meaning and specific information
  • Read and demonstrate understanding of simple Spanish in sentences and paragraphs, dialogs, short news articles, advertisements, itineraries, sayings and other cultural information
  • Write short narratives, descriptions, daily routines, and simple dialogues that reflect cultural themes demonstrating knowledge of structures and vocabulary taught
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the relationship between the practices and perspectives of the cultures studied
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the relationship between the products and perspectives of the cultures studied
  • Acquire information and begin to recognize the distinctive viewpoints that are only available through the study of Spanish and its cultures

The course will prepare students for SPAN 1020 (Intermediate Spanish I).

Prerequisites & Co-requisites:

Students should be able to use a computer and browse the Internet.

Course Topics:

Content - Unidades 1 - 5

Unidad 1Saludos
1.1 ¡Besos y abrazos!
1.2 ¿De dónde eres?  
1.3 ¿Qué estudias?
1.4 Tiempo y fechas    
1.1b Adjective agreement
1.2a Subject pronouns
1.2b Ser
1.2c Forming questions
1.3a Gustar introduction
1.3b Present tense of regular –ar verbs
1.4a Weather expressions
 1.4b Cardinal numbers and dates
1.4c Ordinal numbers
Unidad 2Amigos y familia 
 2.1 Intereses  
 2.2 ¿Cómo eres? 
 2.3 Familia      
 2.4 Me presento  
 2.1a Present tense of regular –er / -ir verbs
2.1b Irregular verbs in the yo form
2.2a Comparisons of inequality
 2.2b Comparisons of equality
2.3a Possessive adjectives
 2.3b Tener and venir
 2.3c Stem-changing verbs
 2.4a Verb + infinitive construction
 2.4b Estar with adjectives of emotion
2.4c Present progressive
Unidad 3Modo de vivir
3.1 Vida Estudiantil
3.2 De modo
3.3 Casa y piso
3.4 Afuera   
3.1a Estar with prepositions of location
3.1b Ir
3.2a Reflexive verbs
3.2b Reciprocal reflexives  
Unidad 4En la calle 
4.1 Las bebidas
4.2 La comida
4.3 Comiendo fuera de casa
4.4 Guía del ocio
4.1a Near future (ir + a +inf.)
4.1b Tú vs. usted
4.2 Soler + infinitive
4.3a Other irregular verbs in the yo form
4.3b Superlatives
4.4 Other verbs that mean ‘to be’ 
Unidad 5Saludos
5.1 El norte
5.2 El sur
5.3 El centro
5.4 E D.F.


5.1a Past participles as adjectives
5.1b Present Perfect







Specific Course Requirements:

Regular access to an Internet-accessible computer to be able to practice listening, reading, and speaking in the target language on a daily basis.

Standard operating system on laptop or desktop computer currently required. Mac OSX or Windows platforms acceptable.

PLEASE NOTE: The RITMOS Textbook and Interactive ( product operates on both Mac OSX and Windows systems. However, it has not been successfully deployed on all tablet devices. Please plan on using a standard desktop OR laptop computer with Mac OSX or Windows system operating software to access this product.

Textbooks, Supplementary Materials, Hardware and Software Requirements

Required Textbooks:

Please visit the Virtual Bookstore to obtain textbook information for this course. Move your cursor over the "Books" link in the navigation bar and select "Textbooks & Course Materials." Select your Program, Term, Department, and Course; then select "Submit."

Supplementary Materials:

 It is recommended students obtain a headphone set with built in microphone to do the listening and oral components of the course. Your computers built in speaker and microphone may be adequate for recording and listening purposes. Please check.

Hardware and Software Requirements:

Minimum hardware requirements can be found here.

Minimum software requirements can be found here.

Common applications you might need:

Web Resources:

Purdue OWL Online Writing Lab (for APA, MLA, or Chicago style)

The Writing Center Online Writer's Handbook

Student Resources:
  • Technical support information can be found on the TN eCampus Help Desk page.
  • Smarthinking virtual tutoring is available FREE of charge. to access Smarthinking, visit the course homepage and select Smarthinking under Course Resources. You also view sample sessions to see what Smarthinking offers and how it works.
  • Information on other student issues or concerns can be located on the TN eCampus Student Resources page.

Instructor Information

Please see "Instructor Information" in the Getting Started Module for instructor contact information, virtual office hours, and other communication information. You can expect to receive a response from the instructor within 24-48 hours unless notified of extenuating circumstances.

Participation, Assessments, & Grading

Testing Procedures:

There is no proctoring required for any assessments. There is no midterm or final exam.

Grading Procedures:

The grading scale is based on the total number of points of all graded items. Each unidad (module) is worth 240 points. There are five unidades giving a total of 1000 pts.



Grading Scale:
Point Range                                     Assigned Grade 
900-1000 Points                                       A
800-899 Points                                         B
700-799 Points                                         C
600-699 Points                                         D 
under 599 Points                                      F


Everything you need for this course is either within Course Content in D2L or in your Ritmos textbook and App. Success in a language course requires repeated exposure and repeated practice of the language in written and oral form. Reading increases vocabulary recognition. In Course Content in D2L you will find several modules:

Start Here Module contains links to many helpful documents and links to external websites, which you will need to read carefully and/or visit before you start. There is also a link to the “Understanding My Spanish Course” Prueba, which must be taken and passed with 100%.

Great Additional Resources Module contains links to additional external websites, which you may find useful.

UNIDAD (Unit) Modules: There are five unidades (units). At the beginning of each unidad module you will find links to an overview of the unidad assessments, grammar, and topics. Next, you will find a vocabulary list, and extra grammar explanations from YouTube. Finally, there you will find links to all the graded assessments. Note: to help you to navigate through the course you can use the checklist feature, which is located under Course Tools.

Assignments and Projects:

The following web addresses are given by the instructor believing that the information is coming from trusted sources. Any other web connection that may come from the noted addresses is not the instructor's responsibility.

For Exercises:

For updated information go to these newspapers:

For information about Spanish-speaking countries:

For an online Spanish / English dictionary:


This prueba can be taken two (2) times. It covers some of the most important aspects of this course, which you need to know in order to successfully navigate your way through it.


D2L. 10 PTS. This prueba is taken at the beginning and end of the course. This quiz assesses how well students are learning the material and is a tool for the developer to make improvements and/or changes to the course. Students receive 20pts. for taking the quiz and answering all the questions, regardless of how many questions are answered correctly.


RITMOS INTERACTIVE & D2L. EACH TEMA WORTH 10 PTS. Each unidad has four temas. Each tema is divided into smaller parts: A, B, C, D, etc. Once you have completed all the parts for each tema, you will need to save it as a pdf and submit to dropbox. If you have a pc, you must download a PDF convertor software to submit this assignment to dropbox. Each tema takes approximately 2-3 hours to complete.

Temas can be submitted at the same time or as each one is completed. See An Overview: How to download & navigate Ritmos in course content for more information.


D2L. WORTH 30 POINTS EACH. Go to DROPBOX, read the instructions, and complete the assignment according to these instructions. Type up assignment in a word document and submit via DROPBOX or paste assignment directly into the comment box (although you will still need to attach a document). There is a checklist to help you prepare this assignment. There is also a rubric within DROPBOX, which will show you how this assignment will be graded.

For extra credit, Submit ESCRITURA assignment to Smarthinking. Make changes as necessary based on tutor markup. Attach Smarthinking markup and revised ESCRITURA assignment to dropbox. Note: expect as much as a 72-hour turn around.


D2L. EACH WORTH 40 POINTS. Follow these steps: 1) Go to the ESCRITURA assignment in DROPBOX and read instructor feedback. 2) Go to ORAL dropbox, review the checklist and rubric and make sure you have included everything 3) Using the corrected ESCRITURA (ORAL) assignment, read the assignment aloud, paying attention to speed, tone, intonation, and pronunciation. Either record directly in DROPBOX using the recording tool (you can only record 60 seconds at a time, but you can upload more than one recording) or record using sound recorder or a similar program and upload the Mp3 to DROPBOX. 4) Please play back your recording before you submit it.

For extra credit, submit revised ESCRITURA (ORAL) assignment to Smarthinking. Make changes as necessary based on tutor markup.

Attach Smarthinking markup and revised ESCRITURA (ORAL) assignment to dropbox. Note: expect as much as a 72-hour turn around.


D2L. WORTH 20 POINTS EACH. Go to ASSESSMENTS. The assignment will require you read an article in your textbook based on a cultural topic related to the unit. Take the lectura quiz. This is a multiple-choice quiz. Choose the most correct option based on what you have understood in the reading.


D2L. WORTH 10 POINTS EACH. The assignment will require you to form an explore multiple perspectives on a topic through discussions with your classmates and/or instructor. The student will create an original post in response to the prompt in the discussion forum. Students must explain their opinion. Do not copy and paste your answer from your Vistas Culturales ¡A Pensar! assignment. Posting should be no more than 5 lines. The student must also respond to at least one other classmate’s posting.

Rubric for Cultural Discussions

(0 points)
(1/2 point)
(1 point)
(1 1/2 points)
(2 points)
Did Not
An insufficient posting or copied pasted answer from dropbox
An adequate posting
A quality posting
A superb posting (Topic was addressed, an opinion formed, supported argument)
Did not respondAn insufficient responseAn adequate responseA quality responseA superb response
Did not post nor respondPosted & responded on last dayLate post & responded on last dayLate post or responded on last dayPost & response(s) on time
Did not post nor respondMany grammar/spelling errorsFew grammar/ spelling errorsVery few grammar/spelling  errorsNo spelling/grammar errors


D2L. WORTH 25 POINTS EACH. The assignment will require you to explore multiple perspectives on a topic based on the unidad topic, VISTAS CULTURALES ¡A HABLAR! discussions, and sources (video, audio or article(s) attached to the dropbox. The student will then either 1) record a five minute oral perspectives presentation or 2) write a 500 word perspectives paper. Whether the student records a presentation or writes a paper, they must a) start with a thesis statement (introduction), b) examine two or more perspectives, c) express their own perspective, d) supports each perspective with evidence, and e) finishes with a conclusion. Submit either a video or audio file or a word or PDF file and submit via DROPBOX.


D2L. EACH WORTH 20 POINTS. Located in Discussions, there will be a list of sentences for you to read out. There is also a recording of the sentences being read out by a native speaker. You are graded on completion of the exercise. To submit: 1) compose a new post in the pronunciación forum. 2) scroll down to the attachments at the bottom of the post. 3) click on Record Audio. 4) record yourself reading the sentences out loud. 5) you may attach more than one recording to your post, if needed. 6) attach and then post. The instructor may give feedback about your assignment with comments or suggestions.


WORTH 10 POINTS. You must participate in the In English and En Español forums for each unidad. There is a minimum of 10 posts per unidad. Participation is graded on the frequency of your posts as well as the content. The Spanish forum is a great place to practice the unidad grammar and vocabulary. The English forum is a great place to connect with your classmates, get help and support, ask questions, and find answers to queries.

Important: Posting "Thank you!", "Me too.", "I agree." etc. etc. will not count towards your overall number of postings. Your postings must add value to the discussion board forum! It is recommended that students check the discussion board frequently. All general questions should be posted in the discussion board (students can email individual issues). For unidad 01, the preséntense forum will count towards your participation for unidad 01.

Rubric for English & Spanish Discussions

Superior posting - 10 pointsThe student has posted ten (10) or more times total over the unidad.
Excellent posting - 9 points

The student has posted nine (9) times total over the unidad.

Good posting - 8 pointsThe student has posted eight (8) times total over the unidad.
Adequate posting - 7 pointsThe student has posted seven (7) times total over the unidad.
Needs improvement - 1 - 6 pointsThe student has posted six (6) times or fewer over the unidad.
Did not post - 0 pointsThe student didn't post within the unidad deadlines

Graded Assessments

Graded Assignments

1 prueba de "Understanding My Spanish Course" @ pts5 points
2 pruebas de comprensión @ 20 pts each20 points
20 TAREAS @ 10 pts each200 points
5 Oral @ 40 pts each200 points
5 Escritura @ 30 pts each150 points
5 Lectura @ 20 pts each100 points
5 Vistas Culturales: a pensar @ 25 pts each125 points
5 Vistas Culturales: a hablar 10 pts each50 points
5 Participación @ 10 pts each50 points
5 Pronunciación @ 20 pts each100 points
Total1000 points


Class Participation:

Students must participate on a regular basis. Students who regularly participate and engage in the class generally receive higher grades, feel less isolated, experience less stress, and enjoy the class more.

Learning a language requires consistent practice, 30 to 45 minutes of daily study is far more effective than a long study session once a week or the day before an assignment is due. The daily study period must include oral and listening practice to develop the students' Spanish speaking and listening skills, which is an important component of the course. Note: organize your time-this class may move more quickly than you anticipate. 

Late Policy:

An online course is NOT easier NOR does it require less time than a traditional face-to-face course. There are a lot of deadlines, with which you must keep up. You must keep a close eye on due dates, which come up very quickly. The Calendar document located in course content includes the deadlines for all assignments as well as units start and end dates. Within these deadlines, students must organize their time appropriately in order to learn the material, practice using the material and submit/complete the assignments on time. 

Online Machine Translation:

Online machine translators, such as iTranslate and Google Translate, are often used by students to complete assignments. There are many reasons to use them, but lack of time is not one of them. Many instructors view online machine translators negatively and view their use as cheating and or plagiarizing. If students enter the whole assignment into a translator, it is cheating, the same way using an essay or parts of an essay from the Internet and passing it off as your own work is cheating.

For this course, you can use Google Translate, which has at best around a 80% accuracy rate (at least a 20% error rate). To reduce the error rate, you must use this aid mindfully. To learn how to avoid some of the pitfalls of poor use watch the following video. Do not rely on Google Translate to do the work for you. It can be used as a pre-writing, editing, revising, and checking tool quite effectively. Because the penalties for incorrect use and poor use are high, when you complete your escritura and oral, make sure you:

  • look at the instructions for the assignment and follow them
  • include all the items on the checklist in your assignment
  • only use the tenses indicted in the checklist. If you use any tense that is not listed in the checklist you will incur a penalty. For example: when it says present tense only! the use of any other tense will result in a penalty for every occurrence.
  • vocabulary should come from the textbook. Other vocabulary can be used, but be sure you check new vocabulary for meaning first.
  • check your English grammar and vocabulary!

Tip: If you want to say something complicated, don't! Break your complex idea into simple short sentences.

Any questions about online translation, ask your instructor!

Course Ground Rules

The following two statements (1., 2.) were derived from the TBR System-wide Student Rules document, released January 2012:


Read the document in its entirety here.

1. Standards of Conduct:

  • Students are required to adhere to the same professional, legal and ethical standards of conduct online as on campus. In addition, students should conform to generally accepted standards of "netiquette" while sending e-mail, posting comments to the discussion board, and while participating in other means of communicating online. Specifically, students should refrain from inappropriate and/or offensive language, comments and actions.

2. Review the TN eCampus Academic Integrity/Academic Honesty Policy:

  • In their academic activities, students are expected to maintain high standards of honesty and integrity. Academic dishonesty is prohibited.

Such conduct includes, but is not limited to:

  • an attempt by one or more students to use unauthorized information in the taking of an exam
  • to submit as one's own work, themes, reports, drawings, laboratory notes, computer programs, or other products prepared by another person,
  • or to knowingly assist another student in obtaining or using unauthorized materials.

Plagiarism, cheating, and other forms of academic dishonesty are prohibited.

Students guilty of academic misconduct, either directly or indirectly through participation or assistance, are subject to disciplinary action through the regular procedures of the student’s home institution.  Refer to the student handbook provided by your home institution to review the student conduct policy.

In addition to other possible disciplinary sanctions that may be imposed, the instructor has the authority to assign an "F" or zero for an activity or to assign an "F" for the course.

Other Course Rules:

Students are expected to:

  • Participate in all aspects of the course
  • Communicate with other students
  • Learn how to navigate in Brightspace
  • Keep abreast of course announcements
  • Use the assigned course management (Brightspace) email address rather than a personal email address
  • Address technical problems immediately:
  • Observe course netiquette at all times.

Guidelines for Communications


  • Always include a subject line.
  • Remember without facial expressions some comments may be taken the wrong way. Be careful in wording your emails. Use of emoticons might be helpful in some cases.
  • Use standard fonts.
  • Do not send large attachments without permission.
  • Special formatting such as centering, audio messages, tables, html, etc. should be avoided unless necessary to complete an assignment or other communication.
  • Respect the privacy of other class members


  • Review the discussion threads thoroughly before entering the discussion. Be a lurker then a discussant.
  • Try to maintain threads by using the "Reply" button rather starting a new topic.
  • Do not make insulting or inflammatory statements to other members of the discussion group. Be respectful of other’s ideas.
  • Be patient and read the comments of other group members thoroughly before entering your remarks.
  • Be cooperative with group leaders in completing assigned tasks.
  • Be positive and constructive in group discussions.
  • Respond in a thoughtful and timely manner.


The Tennessee Virtual Library is available to all students enrolled in TN eCampus programs and courses. Links to library materials (such as electronic journals, databases, interlibrary loans, digital reserves, dictionaries, encyclopedias, maps, and librarian support) and Internet resources needed by learners to complete online assignments and as background reading will be included within the course modules. To access the Virtual Library, go to the course homepage and select the Virtual Library link under Course Resources.

Students with Disabilities

Qualified students with disabilities will be provided reasonable and necessary academic accommodations if determined eligible by the appropriate disability services staff at their home institution. Prior to granting disability accommodations in this course, the instructor must receive written verification of a student's eligibility for specific accommodations from the disability services staff at the home institution. It is the student's responsibility to initiate contact with their home institution's disability services staff and to follow the established procedures for having the accommodation notice sent to the instructor.

Syllabus Changes

The instructor reserves the right to make changes as necessary to this syllabus. If changes are necessitated during the term of the course, the instructor will immediately notify students of such changes both by individual email communication and posting both notification and nature of change(s) on the course bulletin board.


The information contained in this syllabus is for general information purposes only. While we endeavor to keep this information up-to-date and accurate, there may be some discrepancies between this syllabus and the one found in your online course. The syllabus of record is the one found in your online course. Please make sure you read the syllabus in your course at the beginning of the semester. Questions regarding course content should be directed to your instructor.

Last Revised on August 28, 2017