MUSC 440 01: Methods and Materials for Elementary Music

MUSC 440 - Methods and Materials for Elementary Music

2023 Fall Syllabus, Section 01, CRN 2048

Course Information

You are responsible for knowing this material, so please read carefully. Any changes will be announced in a Blackboard Announcement. You will be responsible for any changes. Your continued enrollment in this course is your implicit agreement to abide by the requirements of this class.

Times and Location

T 8am-10:50am in UND Hughes Fine Arts, Rm 258

Instructor Information

Whitney Mayo


Office: HFAC 216

Office Phone: (701) 777-2728

Cell Phone: (254) 317-7561

I prefer to be addressed as Dr. Mayo or Whitney

Course Description

Overview of methods and materials in elementary music for music majors and minors. Includes experiences for the practical application of course content.

Overview of methods and materials in elementary music for music majors and minors. Includes experiences for the practical application of course content.

Co-Requisite: T&L 386: Field Experience (1 credit)

This course is designed to provide students with an overview to teaching elementary music. This includes an understanding of child development, curriculum design, music pedagogy and instruction, classroom management, and assessment. We will discuss equitable practices, including diversity, culturally responsive pedagogy, and universal design for learning. Students will be expected to complete lesson planning activities, peer teach experiences, and various assignments designed to help develop the plan, teach, reflect cycle.

Learning Outcomes

Students will be able to:

  1. Explain the stages and sequences of a child’s musical development, and apply this information in lesson planning, music instruction, and assessment.
  2. Engage students (peers and children) in: pattern instruction, singing, chanting, moving, playing instruments, improvisation, composition, and listening while taking into account the diverse needs of each student (including but not limited to ability, gender, and culture).
  3. Plan developmentally appropriate music curricula, including evaluation of student achievement, with reference to the North Dakota Music Content Standards and National Standards for Music Education.

Students will begin to: 

  1. Identify and take advantage of resources and professional development opportunities.
  2. Build a toolkit of repertoire, activities, and classroom management strategies.
  3. Demonstrate instruction that fulfills curricular objectives and is appropriate and engaging for children.

Students will continue to:

  1. Formulate a coherent, holistic philosophy of music education, to guide instructional decisions and as a tool for advocacy.

Course Materials


Shouldice, H. N. (2021). Weaving it all together: A practical guide to applying Gordon's music learning theory in the elementary general music program. GIA Publications. ISBN: 162277602X

Music notation software, such as Finale or Musescore.

Supplemental Materials (optional)

  • Froseth, James O.  Solfege and rhythm syllable CDs. GIA.
  • Bolton, B. M., Gordon, E. E., Taggart, C. C., & Valerio, W. K. (1993). Experimental Songs and Chants, Book 1.  Chicago:  GIA.
  • Valerio, W., Reynolds, A., Bolton, B., Taggart, C., & Gordon, E.  (1998) Music Play. GIA.
  • Valerio, W., Reynolds, A., Taggart, C., & Salvador K. (2020). Music Play 2. Early Childhood Music Engagement Plans. Guide for Parents, Teachers, Caregivers, and Children. GIA.
  • Valerio, W., Reynolds, A., Bolton, B., Taggart, C., & Gordon, E. (2000). Jump Right In Teacher’s Manual, Grade 1. GIA
  • Gordon, E. (2001). Reference Handbook for Using Learning Sequence Activities. GIA
  • Gordon, E. (1990). Jump Right In Tonal Register Book 1. GIA
  • Gordon, E. (1990). Jump Right In Rhythm Register Book 1. GIA
  • Bluestine, E. (2000). The ways children learn music:  An introduction and practical guide to music learning theory. (Revised Edition).  GIA.
  • Keetman, G. (1970). Elementaria. Schott.

All supplemental materials are available in the Music Library and/or through Dr. Mayo. All readings that are outside of the textbook will be available on Blackboard.

Technical Requirements/Assistance

Whether you’re taking courses in the classroom or online, it’s important to have the right technology and equipment.  Visit the UND Technical Requirements webpage for more information. Students are expected to use their official UND email in the course. For technical assistance, please contact UND Technical Support at 701.777.2222. Visit the University Information Technologies (UIT) website for their hours, help documents and other resources.

Minimum Technical Skills Needed

To succeed in this course, you should be able to:

  • Navigate in and use Blackboard functions like submitting an assignment, posting and responding to discussion boards, and locating resources
  • Download and open electronic documents, including using the “track changes” and comment features
  • Navigate shared documents using Google Drive (including docs, sheets, slides, etc) and work collaboratively using the Comments function
  • Create, save, and upload/attach electronic documents
  • Send, receive, and manage email
  • Use search engines (including library databases) to locate and access information.
  • Use notation software to input musical material and export to a PDF

Visit the Knowledge Base for additional support and information about general tech requirements for students, including information about devices, operating systems, software, internet connection, and major-specific tech requirements.

Course Logistics

Access & Log-in Information

This course was developed and will be facilitated utilizing Blackboard. To start the course, please go to: and log in with your NDUS.Identifier (Username and Password). If you do not know your NDUS Identifier or have forgotten your password, please visit Your NDUS Account Webpage on the UIT website.

Course Overview

This 16 week course. Each week will include readings, preparatory activities and assignments to help you prepare for class. We will discuss readings and share teaching examples. The course calendar provides weekly information about assigned readings and activities that should be completed before class.

What Should Students Do First?

Prior to the start of the semester, students should carefully review the syllabus and familiarize themselves with the course calendar and the Blackboard site. Additionally, students should purchase the textbook materials as soon as possible to ensure not missed readings. Be sure to communicate with Melissa Burdick in T&L regarding field experience placements.

Where Do I Find Information in Blackboard?

Our course calendar is located in the “Syllabus and Schedule” tab along the left side course menu in Blackboard. Each week will have a folder in the “Weekly Folders” tab. Weekly assignments, readings, and any additional materials will be housed here. Field experience journals will be submitted to their appropriate assignment tab in “Journals.”

Questions about Coursework?

For coursework questions, including assignments, lectures, and in-class activities, please do the following rather than make an appointment:

  1. Ensure you have carefully reviewed the syllabus, module materials, and any applicable assignment descriptions or rubrics.
  2. 3B4Me. In elementary schools, it’s common to say “three before me” as a way to ask students to check in with each other to ensure shared understanding and to reduce the number of overlapping questions. It means checking with three other students before you go to the teacher. In our class, this would be a good use of a course GroupMe or Discord channel. I ask that you do this because it is likely that your question will help other students (and/or, you will find that another student knows the answer).

For anything else, please visit during office hours or email to set up an individual appointment.


UND cares about your success as a student. For more information, visit the Student Resources Page for additional information. Students can access assistance from the UND Writing Center, Tutoring and Learning Services, Testing Services, and more.

Students also have access to the UND Student Resource Site via Blackboard. It is recommended that you become familiar with the tools and tutorials within Blackboard to better equip you in navigating the course and Educational Technology, including Yuja, VoiceThread, Discussion Boards, Riipen, Smart Thinking, Proctoring, etc.


Always use professional language (no netspeak) in your assignments and emails. Please always be respectful of others, even if you disagree with their ideas or do not get along. Here are a few basic points to remember when communicating in this course:

  • Be scholarly. Use proper language, grammar, and spelling. Explain your thoughts, justify opinions, and credit the ideas of others by citing or linking to scholarly resources. Avoid misinforming others when you are unsure of the answer.  When discussing something and supplying a guess, clearly state that.
  • Be respectful. Respect the privacy of others. Do not share personal or professional information about others unless granted permission. Respect diversity and opinions that differ from their own. Be tactful when you communicate.
  • Be professional. Everyone should strive to give their best impression online. Truthfulness, accuracy, and running a final spell check are appropriate expectations for university students. Writing in a legible font and limiting the use of emoticons is considered professional behavior. Profanity and participation in hostile interactions are unprofessional as well as disruptive.
  • Be polite. Students should address professors and instructors by the appropriate title or requested name. Students should interact online politely, just as they would be expected to do in a physical environment. Sarcasm, rudeness, and writing in all capital letters should be avoided.

For more information, read the Top 12 Be-Attitudes of Netiquette for Academicians.


Outside of class, our primary mode of communication will be email. Students are expected to check their UND emails daily (excluding weekends) and should promptly respond to class-related emails. Professional communication is expected (no netspeak or text-like communication).

As the instructor, I will also check my email frequently and work to respond within one-two business days. Please note that I will not check/respond to emails after 8 pm CST during the week and may not respond during weekends. I will share assignment feedback via email within one week following the assignment and will communicate when those timelines may be varied due to holidays, conference travel, or other circumstances.


Many resources will be available on Blackboard. Most assignments will be submitted via Blackboard (those assignments outside of Blackboard will be communicated in class and in writing). Download and review materials. Announcements may also be made via Blackboard. Please make sure you have easy access to this and check it regularly.

Teaching Video Recording

You are encouraged to record your teaching in class and in schools for the purposes of reflection, per schools’ policies. Videos with children will not be stored on the internet or emailed. If you share a video of your teaching or view the video of a peer who has taught children, files should be shared via USB drive or another secure format. Videos containing children should be deleted after the semester has ended. Teaching videos will not be distributed publicly under any circumstances.

Technology and Video Conferencing

In this class, we will have a technology policy that is designed to support your attention to one another and the course material.  We will spend the majority of our time engaged in activities that depend upon you being present and attentive to one another and the course content we will study. We are all challenged these days by the ways in which our digital devices—including laptops, tablets, phones, and watches—can steal our attention away from our immediate surroundings. Technology should be used for educational purposes only during scheduled class times.

In the event of virtual class meetings, we will utilize Zoom. When interacting with peers online or through video conferencing, it is important to consider your environment and interact professionally. Students should follow the Code of Student Life while interacting virtually or in person.

Sharing personal experiences and opinions is an important part of the learning process. In the seminar-based environment of this course, all our online interactions will be recorded and made available to students in the course. The purpose of these recordings is to enhance learning for all students. If your peers make personal statements in this course, consider those comments in the context of our learning goals, and do not share them with people outside the course. If you have questions or concerns about any recordings, please contact me.


This course is made up of a series of assignments and assessments to assist you in achieving the course learning objectives/outcomes. We will approach the course content using an ungrading approach, which I discuss in the Grading section.


Course activities will fit into one of four categories: Plan, Teach, Reflect, and Resource Development. These categories are modeled after a philosophical approach to teaching and incorporating an eye toward your future classrooms.

All assignment and presentation due dates are noted on Blackboard and the Course Calendar document.


  • Activity Planning: You will build up your lesson planning skills throughout the semester by completing various activity components. These activity plans should be typed and written so that someone other than you can teach the activity as you have designed (sufficient detail, clear sequencing, etc.).
  • Lesson Planning: You will design lessons for kindergarten, second grade, and fifth grade toward the end of the semester. These lesson plans will include considerations for objectives, standards, materials, activity procedure, UDL considerations, and assessment. Dr. Mayo will provide extensive feedback on the lesson plans, and (provided they are submitted on time) they can be revised and included as part of the final instructional plan.
  • Final Instructional Plan: As a culminating component of our course, students will create a final instructional plan, including six (6) total lesson plans. These plans will feature two (2) sequential lessons for kindergarten, second grade, and fifth grade. Specific assignment guidelines will be provided on Blackboard.
  • Understanding by Design Lesson and Supplemental Materials: As part of the licensure requirements, you will design and reflect upon a unit of instruction using the Understanding by Design Lesson template. While your individual lesson plans will outline instruction for one class, the UbD plan will describe your approach to teaching a specific concept. We will discuss this project in depth in class, and additional information will be provided on Blackboard.


  • Teaching Videos: Early in the semester, you will complete two teaching videos: one demonstrating solfege and hand signs while singing and the other practicing early childhood music activities. These teaching samples can be done individually or with a small group and will be video recorded and submitted to Dr. Mayo. These assignments help you practice leading an activity and singing in a safe space in preparation for our peer teaching activities.
  •  Peer Teaching: You will peer teach in class regularly. These experiences are described in the assignment descriptions posted to Blackboard and include teaching a rote song and chant, a creative movement activity, a play party or folk dance, an Orff arrangement, and an activity from your final project. Assessment supports (rubrics/rating scales) for peer teaching will be available on Blackboard to help you prepare. No make-up without documented evidence of dire circumstances.
  • Final Peer Teach: During our final “exam” period, you will teach a portion of your final instructional plan. This cannot be made up. Details about this assignment will be available on Blackboard.

There will also be informal opportunities to lead activities, such as a hello song, during class. While these opportunities are not assignments, students are encouraged to take advantage of the teaching experiences within this course.


  • Reading Responses: During the semester, you will complete a selection of required weekly readings. You will complete a reading response for six (6) of the reading sets. For these weeks, you’ll read both the required reading and the italicized selection (available on Blackboard). The italicized readings are optioned (but encouraged) for the weeks you choose not to write a response. The reading response prompt is available on Blackboard. Reading responses are due before the start of class on the date the readings are assigned.
  • Peer Teach Reflections: After each peer teach experience, you will write a reflection based on your experience and the examples of your peers. These reflections are designed to encourage you to think critically (positive and constructive) about your teaching practice and consider your strengths and areas of improvement. These reflections will be due within 48 hours of your peer teaching experience.
  • Field Experience Journals: Field Experience (T&L 386) is a co-requisite for this course. For each field visit, you will complete a journal response based on the prompt provided. You will complete these reflections using Google Drive along with documentation of your field experience hours in Watermark. More information will be available on Watermark and Blackboard.
  • Meta-Reflection: Read over your reflection entries in order from the beginning of the semester. Look for evidence of how you have grown or what you have learned over the semester. Reflect on your progress in a 4-5 page paper. Use quotes from your reading responses, observation reports, progress letters, and peer teaching reflections to support your assertions (and cite them like this: “Reflection Entry, 2/15/2021”). Questions you might consider include (but are not limited to): Are you developing the competencies that are the objectives of this course? What will you take away from the combination of this class and field experience? What do you still need to work on? What questions or concerns do you still have (or do you now have as a result of your experiences)? How will your experiences in this class inform your teaching of older students if you plan to teach at the high school level? Detailed instructions will be posted to Blackboard.

Resource Development

  • Virtual Resource Folder: Students will compile a VIRTUAL resource binder comprised of songs, melodies, and chants; listening activities; lesson plans; technological resources; assessment information; and resources for including all learners that utilize inclusive practices related to (dis)ability, language, gender, and location, among others. Further information about this project will be available on Blackboard.
  • Special Topics Paper: Students will complete a paper (3–4 pages) alone or with a partner (your choice) on a topic that has implications for serving all learners in elementary general music education. Students are encouraged to select topics such as teaching elementary general music in urban (or rural) settings, diversity of home language, gender, religion, race (etc.), music for special learners, or another relevant topic to the field. Students will meet with Dr. Mayo to approve their topic ahead of time. At least six cited resources are necessary, two of which must come from music education journals (one practical, one research). One draft is due before the final. Students will present their work in class.
  • Resource Shares: During the semester, you will be asked to share resources that you’ve found for your classroom, including (but not limited to) examples of children’s literature and classroom technology. These resources can also be used in the virtual resource folder.


This course will focus on qualitative, not quantitative assessments, as this is the type of assessment I want you to employ within your teaching and with your future students. We will discuss this at length during class, both with reference to your work and education more broadly. While you will receive a final grade at the semester's end, as university policy requires, I will not be grading individual assignments. Rather, I will ask questions and comment that engage your work (and invite you to do so as well) instead of simply evaluating it. You will be reflecting, carefully and often, on your work and the work of your peers. You will be actively involved in deciding your final grade for this course, and this process will occur throughout the semester. The intention here is to help you focus on working more organically and allow you the space to work creatively and in ways that make the most sense toward your goals, as opposed to working as you think you are expected to.

Please note that you are expected to complete assignments on time and to the best of your ability to reap the full benefits of the learning experiences in this course. Deadlines and completion will factor into our collaborative discussions regarding your in-progress and final grade in the course. I have included the university grading scale below as a guide, and it will serve as the criteria by which we determine your final course grade.

If for any reason this process causes more anxiety than it alleviates, feel free to see me to discuss your progress in the course to date. If you are in any way worried about your grade, your best strategy should be to join the discussions, do the readings, complete the assignments, and participate fully in class. You should consider this course a “busywork-free zone.” If for some reason an assignment does not feel productive, we can discuss it to find ways to modify, remix, or repurpose the instructions.

For more information about upgrading, please see

Blum, S. D. (Ed.) (2020). Ungrading: Why rating students undermines learning (and what to do instead). West Virginia University Press.

Feldman, J. (2019). Grading for equity: What it is, why it matters, and how it can transform schools and classrooms. Corwin.

University Grading Scale

4 - Marked Excellence

3 - Superior

2 - Average

1 - Passing but low

0 - Failure

Course Evaluation

Near the end of the semester, you will be asked to complete an online course evaluation form (SELFI). Your feedback on the course is extremely valuable to me. I read my students’ comments carefully and use them to improve the course the next time I teach it.

  • When the time comes, please let me know which aspects of the course helped you learn—and which aspects might be modified to help future students learn more effectively. 
  • Please note that the course evaluations are anonymous and that I won’t see the results until after the grades for the course are submitted, allowing you to provide honest and constructive feedback. 
  • Throughout the semester, if you have concerns or feedback, please reach out to schedule a time to discuss.

Course Policies

Credit Load

This 400-level course carries a 3-hour credit load. As such, students should expect to spend at least 6 hours each week outside of class preparing, which includes reading, practicing, and completing assignments. Some weeks will require more time outside of class than others, and actual time spent may vary depending on previous experience and knowledge.


This is a highly interactive class, and there is no replacement for experiences during class time. Attendance (including on-time arrival) is an expected component in this course. While attendance is not a graded component, students are expected to communicate absences with Dr. Mayo in advance. Excessive absences may lead to a conversation about expected outcomes and/or a lowered final grade at the instructor’s discretion.

In the event of an absence, students are responsible for completing all assignments by the posted deadlines (unless previous arrangements have been made) and staying caught up on what was missed. Please be aware that there is always more flexibility before an absence/deadline than after.

Participation, Preparation, & Professionalism

Your presence in class and on-time arrival is required to participate and demonstrate your preparation and professionalism.


There will be a variety of activities (e.g., moving, singing, playing, listening, creating) in each class. Please be prepared to engage actively in all aspects (in mind, body, and dress) and support peers. Dress comfortably, as we will often be moving or sitting on the floor.


Review and complete necessary readings/assignments/practice before class. Review and practice teaching activities before your scheduled teaching days. The plan-teach-reflect cycle is a crucial part of effective teaching and is modeled and emphasized throughout every aspect of this course. It is also advised that computers be brought to each class meeting.


Completing work (including field experiences) on time, thorough preparation, appropriate dress and language, courteous communication, and maintaining privacy reflects professionalism. Stay caught up on class activities and assignments by reviewing the syllabus at least once per week and checking the announcements on Blackboard. Respond to emails in a timely manner and come prepared to engage in class fully. Dress appropriately for class activities and teaching (in class or schools) and use appropriate professional language and decorum while doing so. Do not share videos taken during class proceedings or sensitive information shared by peers with others outside the class.

Assignment and Late Work Policy

[Due dates for each assignment or activity will be posted in Blackboard. All assignments must be submitted by the due date and time posted in the course. All times are posted in the Central Time Zone.

The acceptance of late assignments is at the discretion of the instructor. If extenuating circumstances arise, it is your responsibility to you contact the instructor prior the due date and request an extension. All requirements for this course must be completed during the course dates.]

Class Participation

[Post your class participation information here. An example is provided below.]

[Participation and presence in class are paramount for students to learn the material and be successful. Students are required to login regularly to the online class site. Students are also required to participate in all class activities such as discussions, discussion boards, blogs, and wikis.]


It is expected that students will complete all requirements for a course during the time frame of the course. For reasons beyond a student’s control, and upon request by the student or on behalf of the student, an incomplete grade may be assigned by the instructor when there is reasonable certainty the student will successfully complete the course without retaking it. The mark “I,” Incomplete, will be assigned only to the student who has been in attendance and has done satisfactory work up to a time within four weeks of the close of the semester, including the examination period, and whose work is incomplete for reasons satisfactory to his or her instructor. More information regarding UND’s Incomplete policy can be found on The Grading System Webpage.

University of North Dakota Policies & Resources

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a serious matter, and any deviations from appropriate behavior will be dealt with strongly. At the discretion of the professor, situations of concern may be dealt with as a scholastic matter or a disciplinary matter.

As a scholastic matter, the professor has the discretion to determine appropriate penalties for the student’s workload or grade, but the situation may be resolved without involving many individuals. An alternative is to treat the situation as a disciplinary matter, which can result in suspension from the University, or have lesser penalties. Be aware that I view this as a very serious matter and will have little tolerance and/or sympathy for questionable practices. A student who attempts to obtain credit for work that is not their own (whether that be on a paper, quiz, homework assignment, exam, etc.) will likely receive a failing grade for that item of work, and at the professor’s discretion, may also receive a failing grade in the course. For more information read the Code of Student Life.

Access and Opportunity, Disability Support, & Medical Services

The University of North Dakota is committed to providing equal access to students with documented disabilities. To ensure access to this class and your program, please contact Disability Services for Students (DSS) to engage in a confidential discussion about accommodations for the classroom and clinical settings. Accommodations are not provided retroactively. Students are encouraged to register with DSS at the start of their program. More information can be obtained by email or by phone at 701.777.2664.


UND is committed to maintaining a safe learning environment while providing quality learning experiences for our students. COVID-19’s continued presence within our UND community may necessitate changes in classroom management as the academic year progresses. As such, UND asks students and instructors to be flexible when necessary to promote a safe environment for learning. Please do not attend an in-person class or lab if you are feeling ill, particularly if you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, or if you have been directed by health professionals to quarantine or isolate. If you are not able to attend class or lab, please notify your instructor as soon as possible and discuss options for making up any missed work in order to ensure your ability to succeed in the course. If you will have an extended absence due to serious illness or other uncontrollable circumstances, you may request an absence notification through the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities. Similarly, if your instructor is ill they may need to cancel class or temporarily move your course to online delivery to ensure that you are able to complete the course successfully.  Instructors may require students to wear masks in the classroom or in the laboratory as a preventative measure designed to facilitate uninterrupted classroom engagement and to facilitate health and safety in the classroom.   If your instructor does require masks in class or in a laboratory, you are expected to comply with that request.

UND also strongly encourages all members of the University community, including students, to get vaccinated, seek out testing when needed, and model positive behavior both on- and off-campus to foster a healthy and safe learning environment for all students. Individuals who would like to discuss disability accommodations regarding masks should contact the Disability Services for Students (DSS) office at 701.777.2664 or Individuals who are unable to wear a mask due to a sincerely held religious belief should contact the UND Equal Opportunity and Title IX Office at 701.777.4171 or

Religious Accommodations

UND offers religious accommodations, which are reasonable changes in the academic environment that enable a student to practice or observe a sincerely held religious belief without undue hardship on the University. Examples include time for prayer or the ability to attend religious events or observe a religious holiday. To request an accommodation, complete the student religious accommodation request form. If you have any questions, you may contact the Equal Opportunity & Title IX Office.

Pregnancy Accommodations

Students who need assistance with academic adjustments related to pregnancy or childbirth may contact the Equal Opportunity & Title IX Office or Academic Affairs to learn about your options. Additional information and services may be found at Pregnancy Resources.

Notice of Nondiscrimination

It is the policy of the University of North Dakota that no person shall be discriminated against because of race, religion, age, color, gender, disability, national origin, creed, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, marital status, veteran’s status, or political belief or affiliation and the equal opportunity and access to facilities shall be available to all. Concerns regarding Title IX, Title VI, Title VII, ADA, and Section 504 may be addressed to Donna Smith, Assistant Vice President for Equal Opportunity & Title IX and Title IX/ADA Coordinator, 102 Twamley Hall, 701.777.4171, or the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Dept. of Education, 230 S. Dearborn St., 37th Floor, Chicago, IL 60604 or any other federal agency.

Reporting of Discrimination, Harassment, or Sexual Misconduct

If you or a friend has experienced sexual misconduct, such as sexual harassment, sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking, please contact the Equal Opportunity & Title IX Office or UND’s Title IX Coordinator, Donna Smith, for assistance: 701.777.4171;; or visit the Title IX webpage. You may also contact the Equal Opportunity & Title IX office if you or a friend has experienced discrimination or harassment based on a protected class, such as race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, pregnancy, marital or parental status, veteran's status, or political belief or affiliation.

Faculty Reporting Obligations Regarding Discrimination, Harassment, or Sexual Misconduct

It is important for students to understand that faculty are required to share with UND’s Title IX Coordinator any incidents of sexual misconduct or of discrimination or harassment based on a protected class that they become aware of, even if those incidents occurred in the past or are disclosed as part of a class assignment. This does not mean an investigation will occur if the student does not want that, but it does allow UND to provide resources to help the student continue to be successful at UND. If you have been impacted by discrimination, harassment, or sexual misconduct, you can find information about confidential support services on the Equal Opportunity & Title IX webpage..

UND Cares Program

How to Seek Help When in Distress

We know that while college is a wonderful time for most students, however, some students may struggle or have issues that arise. You may experience students in distress on campus, in your classroom, in your home, and within residence halls. Distressed students may initially seek assistance from faculty, staff members, their parents, and other students. In addition to the support we can provide to each other, there are also professional support services available to students through the Dean of Students and University Counseling Center. Both staffs are available to consult with you about getting help or providing a friend with the help that he or she may need. For more additional information, please visit the UND Cares Program Webpage.

How to Recognize When a Student is in Distress

The term “distressed” can mean any of the following:

  • Student has significant changes in eating, sleeping, grooming, spending, or other daily activities.
  • Student has cut off or minimized contact with family or friends.
  • Student has significant changes in performance or involvement in academics, sports, extracurricular, or social activities.
  • Student describes problems (missing class, not remembering, destructive behavior) that result from experiences with drinking or drugs.
  • Student is acting withdrawn, volatile, tearful, etc.
  • Student is acting out of character or different than usual.
  • Student is talking explicitly about hopelessness or suicide.
  • Student has difficulty concentrating or difficulty carrying on a normal conversation.
  • Student has excessive dependence on others for company or support.
  • Student reports feeling out of control of one’s emotions, thoughts, or behaviors.

Land Acknowledgement Statement

Today, the University of North Dakota rests on the ancestral lands of the Pembina and Red Lake Bands of Ojibwe and the Dakota Oyate - presently existing as composite parts of the Red Lake, Turtle Mountain, White Earth Bands, and the Dakota Tribes of Minnesota and North Dakota. We acknowledge the people who resided here for generations and recognize that the spirit of the Ojibwe and Oyate people permeate this land. As a university community, we will continue to build upon our relations with the First Nations of the State of North Dakota - the Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara Nation, Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate Nation, Spirit Lake Nation, Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, and Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians.

Additional Resources

It is my goal to foster an environment of mutual respect in which everyone feels comfortable voicing their opinions, sharing their stories, and learning about potentially heavy or personally relevant material. If, at any point, you feel like the information covered in this class elicits thoughts, feelings, or concerns that you would like to discuss further, don’t hesitate to reach out to me, or the UND Counseling Center (701-777-2127).

Further, if you experience extenuating circumstances, sexual violence, identity-based harm, or any other personal crisis during the semester, don’t hesitate to reach out to me so we can provide academic assistance and help you in this course, and put you in contact with the appropriate resources and services (if needed).