High School

1302 North Street
Olympia, WA 98501
Phone: (360) 596-7000
Attendance: (360) 596-7003
Fax: (360) 596-7001

English 12:  Film as Literature

Course Syllabus

Instructor:         Ms. K. Dorgan    (360) 596-7270    kdorgan@osd.wednet.edu        

Classroom:         Lecture Hall, Performing Arts Center

 Course Description:

A study of films with particular emphasis on themes, history, genre and film making techniques as applied to analysis and interpretation of films as a type of literature.


Students are responsible for information presented in class lectures, discussions and assigned readings provided by instructor.  Tests and quizzes will be given based on readings, lecture notes and films viewed.  Daily assignments including response journals and film analysis papers will be regularly assigned. Participation points will be awarded periodically for discussion, journal, or activity participation. All assignments must be word processed and handed in on time, or emailed, on time, to the instructor.


Films viewed in class cover a wide range of subject material; genres range from musical to suspense to drama and cover a time span from 1930 to the present.  Occasionally a film with a MPAA rating of "R" (not suitable for those under the age of 17 without a parent or guardian) may be shown. I am happy to discuss film selections with parents.  Films for class viewing are specifically chosen to illustrate the learning goals of this class and alternate selections are not provided.

Attendance/Discipline Policies:

Students are expected to on time and prepared for class. All attendance and behavior policies outlined in the Olympia High School student handbook will be enforced.  Attendance and behavior expectations specific to this class are as follows:

1.         No food or beverages except water are allowed in the Performing Arts Center and must be left outside the classroom or kept in bags.  Violation of this policy will result in discipline according to regular school procedures.

2.         Cell phones and electronic devices must be turned off and left in bags or outside the classroom. Students using phones or electronic devices in the classroom without permission will be sent to study hall according to the OHS discipline procedures.

3.         Film projects and assignments must be in accordance with copyright law and regulations.  No parts of full length feature films, including footage and/or script materials may be used in a student film without consultation with instructor to assure legal compliance. Written material for screenplays, film analysis and other papers must be the student's own work; any ideas or concepts taken from published work must be cited in correct MLA format. Failure to do so will result in disciplinary procedures according to the Olympia High School cheating policy.

4.         Student-made films featuring students other than the film's creators must have permission of those students to include them in the film.  Student films must be posted on password-protected youTube accounts or given to instructor in another format to ensure privacy of students appearing in those films.

Assignment Submission

Assignments will be submitted through www.turnitin.com    Students will set up accounts at this site at the beginning of the semester; instructor feedback and assessment will be provided through the site.  Students without Internet access may make special arrangements with instructor for submitting work.

Late and Make-up Work:

All assignments, notes and film information sheets are posted on the Film as Literature web page that is accessible from the OHS Home page àDepartmentsàEnglishàDorganàFilm.  There is also a section titled “What We did in ClassToday” to assist absent students in keeping up with class work. Upon returning from an excused absence, it is the responsibility of the student to check with instructor concerning missed assignments or lecture notes.  Students missing portions of films being viewed are responsible for obtaining a copy of the film and viewing sections missed or attending a make-up viewing either before or after school.  Film viewing, alternate participation assignments, tests and other assignments must be made within one week of the students return to school.  Two opportunities will be provided within the one-week time frame for test make-up.   If a student is absent from film class only, the work must be turned in upon return to school on the same day the assignment is due.  It must be left in my mailbox in the main office or emailed to me by the end of the day it is due. Students may only make up current missing work, i.e.,work that was assigned during the current 6 week grading period.

All work not turned in due to unexcused absences will not be accepted.  Participation points for unexcused absences may not be made up.  Students will lose ten percent of assignment point value for each day past the due date.  No work will be accepted more than three school days after the due date.  Extenuating or special circumstances will be considered only if student conferences with instructor prior to the assignment due date.


All test, quizzes, written assignments and major projects will be assigned point values.  Students will receive copies of assessment information at the time assignments are given.  Progress report and semester grades will be based on percentage of total points earned.