Professor: Jim Brown
Class Time: MW, 9:35am-10:55am
Meeting Place: Whitman Digital Commons, Room 102

Jim's Office: Whitman Center 103
Jim's Office Hours: Wednesday, 11:00am-12:30pm, or by appointment
Jim's Email: jim[dot]brown[at]rutgers[dot]edu

Course Website:

Course Learning Outcomes
Upon completion of this class, students will be able to:

  • Understand the economic, political, and environmental impacts of digital trash
  • Critically analyze and create arguments about digital trash
  • Apply the vocabulary and concepts of sustainability to their own digital lives and habits
  • Clearly communicate the ideas and concepts discussed in this class to a public audience

Engaged Civic Learning Outcomes
This course fulfills the Engaged Civic Learning general education requirement. Upon completion of this ECL course, students will be able to:

  • Communicate effectively with community members by developing a workshop for high school students that address the challenges of digital trash.
  • Work constructively with local high school students to address the public challenges of sustainability in our digital lives.

Required Books

  • Greening the Media, Maxwell and Miller (available at bookstore)

Other readings will be posted to Sakai as PDFs

Course Work and Grades
Undergraduate student grades will be determined based on:

  • Attendance (10%)
  • In-class writing activities (10%)
  • Response Papers (10%)
  • Digital Trash Autobiography (20%)
  • Digital Life Cycle Project (20%)
  • Sustainable Digital Practices Workshop (30%)

Grades will be assigned on the following scale:

A 90-100
B+ 88-89
B 80-86
C+ 78-79
C 70-77
D 60-69
F 59 and below

Content Warning
We will be reading and discussing material that addresses online harassment and abuse, and some of that material may contain references that you will want to know about in advance. I will do my best to provide detailed content warnings prior to each course reading. However, if you have concerns about encountering anything specific in the course material, please contact me via email or make an appointment to see me. I will do my best to flag content based on your requests.

Success in this class will require regular attendance, and I will take attendance at each class meeting. In addition, we will often complete graded work in class that cannot be made up. You are required to attend class daily, arrive on time, do assigned reading and writing, and participate in all in-class work. Please save absences for when you are sick or have a personal emergency. If you find that an unavoidable problem prevents you from attending class or from arriving on time, please discuss the problem with me.

If you are more than 5 minutes late for class, you will be considered absent. If there is something keeping you from getting to class on time (i.e., bus or train schedules), please let me know during the first week of class.

Computers, Smartphones, etc.
Please feel free to use your computer or tablet during class. However, I ask that you put away smartphones. If you have a specific reason for using your phone for class related activities, please meet with me to discuss.

Late Assignments
Due dates for assignments are posted on the course website. Late assignments are not accepted.

Intellectual Property
Using the work of others without attribution, having another student complete an assignment for you, or any other violations of the university's Academic Integrity Policy will result in a failing grade. If you have questions about the that policy, please see the Dean of Student Affairs website.

The Office of Disability Services
From the The Office of Disability Services (ODS):

"The ODS provides students with confidential advising and accommodation services in order to allow students with documented physical, mental, and learning disabilities to successfully complete their course of study at Rutgers University – Camden. The ODS provides for the confidential documentation and verification of student accommodations, and communicates with faculty regarding disabilities and accommodations. The ODS provides accommodation services, which can include readers, interpreters, alternate text, special equipment, and note takers. The ODS acts as a signatory for special waivers. The ODS also works with students, faculty, staff and administrators to enforce the American with Disabilities Act of 1990."

If you believe you might require an accommodation, please contact the ODS early in the semester.

Technology Policy
We will use digital technology frequently in this class. Although I am assuming that you have some basic knowledge of computers, such as how to use a keyboard and mouse, and how to use the Web and check e-mail, most things will be explained in class. If you don’t understand what we are doing, please ask for help. If you are familiar with the technology we are using please lend a helping hand to your classmates.

Sakai, Course Website, and Email
You should check your email daily. Class announcements and assignments may be distributed through email. The course website will also have important information about assignments and policies. Pay close attention to the course calendar as we move through the semester. I reserve the right to move things around if necessary.