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HUMAN 3LM3 Art Of Leadership: Mentorship

Academic Year: Fall 2017

Term: Fall

Day/Evening: D

Instructor: Prof. Daniel Schmidtke


Office: Togo Salmon Hall 607

Phone: 905-525-9140 x

Office Hours: LRW 4045 (in MELD space) Tuesday 3pm - 5pm [NOT TOGO SALMON HALL 607]

Course Objectives:

This course offers senior undergraduate students the opportunity to participate in a learning-centred leadership program, involving peer-to-peer mentoring of students in the MELD program. The course provides up-front and on-going training and development in active leadership and mentorship.

By the end of the course students will have learned:

  • the five practices for exemplary leadership
  • the key principles of excellence in leadership
  • the best practices and principles for effective mentorship
  • how to connect the experiential component of mentorship to aspects of the professional world
  • how to connect leadership theory with practice through reflection and discussion
  • insights into personal strengths and weaknesses as related to the development of leadership skills
  • valuable skills in the development of an electronic portfolio that is informed by evidence and reflective practice

Textbooks, Materials & Fees:


  1. Kouzes, J. M. and B. Z. Posner. The Student Leadership Challenge. Wiley. 2014.
  2. Shankman, M. L., Scott, J.A., and R. Miguel. Emotionally intelligent leadership for Students (Inventory). Wiley. 2015

Method of Assessment:


Exact schedule of due dates is provided in Avenue.

Coursework Reflections (5 x 3% = 15%)

  • Approximately every other week, you will be provided with a set of questions that will ask you to reflect on what you’ve been learning in class, on videos accessed throught Avenue, and on the self-assessments that you are asked to complete.

Mentorship Reflections (5 x 3% = 15%)

  • Approximately every other week, you will be provided with a set of questions that will ask you to reflect on your mentorship experience overall and specifically since the last reflection. These questions will direct you to set goals and evaluate progress.

Quizzes (5 x 5% = 25%)

  • In the middle of the course, at the beginning of each of 5 classes, you will be given a quiz on the associated reading in the Student Leadership Challenge book. If you have read the chapter and spent some time absorbing the content, these should be fairly easy, straightforward quizzes.

Portfolio (20%) 

  • At the end of the course you will submit a portfolio, based on a review of your reflections and what you have learned about yourself, about leadership and about mentorship. You will put this together into a presentation (you can create the portfolio using a website builder (Wix, Weebly, WordPress) or the PebblePad platform, accessible through Avenue. More details to follow.

Group Presentation (8% presentation; 3% groupwork reflection)

  • You and your group (you will be assigned to a group) will prepare and give a short presentation. We will have a workshop on presentation skills, but the primary purpose of this assignment is to navigate the process of working as a group. The presentation requirements will be discussed in detail in class.
  • You will then answer several reflection questions on the process of working together, the role you took, and what you learned.

Accountability Group Peer Feedback (8%)

  • As of the third week of the course you will be placed into a group for the duration of the semester. You will do most in-class activities with that group and will be assigned a group-specific discussion board on Avenue. You are asked to regularly touch base with your group members to see how things are going with their mentorship and to share ideas. At the end of the semester, you will provide feedback about yourself and your peers and how much everyone participated and worked together throughout the term.

Attendance (6%)

  • We will record your attendance per hour (if you arrive late or leave early, you will only receive a partial attendance grade). Your attendance grade will be the equivalent of the percentage of hours you attend class.

Policy on Missed Work, Extensions, and Late Penalties:

If you know you cannot submit work on time, or are unable to meet with your mentee(s) on a particular day, please notify the relevant parties (TA/Instructor/Mentee(s)) as soon as possible BEFORE the due date/meeting, and discuss with the Instructor or TA. Failure to notify may result in a zero for the component missed.

Please Note the Following Policies and Statements:

Academic Dishonesty

You are expected to exhibit honesty and use ethical behaviour in all aspects of the learning process. Academic credentials you earn are rooted in principles of honesty and academic integrity.

Academic dishonesty is to knowingly act or fail to act in a way that results or could result in unearned academic credit or advantage. This behaviour can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: "Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty"), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university.

It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty. For information on the various types of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy, located at

The following illustrates only three forms of academic dishonesty:

  1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not one’s own or for which other credit has been obtained.
  2. Improper collaboration in group work.
  3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.

Email correspondence policy

It is the policy of the Faculty of Humanities that all email communication sent from students to instructors (including TAs), and from students to staff, must originate from each student’s own McMaster University email account. This policy protects confidentiality and confirms the identity of the student.  Instructors will delete emails that do not originate from a McMaster email account.

Modification of course outlines

The University reserves the right to change dates and/or deadlines etc. for any or all courses in the case of an emergency situation or labour disruption or civil unrest/disobedience, etc. If a modification becomes necessary, reasonable notice and communication with the students will be given with an explanation and the opportunity to comment on changes. Any significant changes should be made in consultation with the Department Chair.

McMaster Student Absence Form (MSAF)

In the event of an absence for medical or other reasons, students should review and follow the Academic Regulation in the Undergraduate Calendar Requests for Relief for Missed Academic Term Work. Please note these regulations have changed beginning Fall 2015. You can find information at If you have any questions about the MSAF, please contact your Associate Dean's office.

Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities

Students who require academic accommodation must contact Student Accessibility Services (SAS) to make arrangements with a Program Coordinator. Academic accommodations must be arranged for each term of study. Student Accessibility Services can be contacted by phone 905-525-9140 ext. 28652 or e-mail For further information, consult McMaster University's Policy for Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities.

Academic Accommodation for Religious, Indigenous and Spiritual Observances

Students requiring academic accommodation based on religion and spiritual observances should follow the procedures set out in the Course Calendar or by their respective Faculty. In most cases, the student should contact his or her professor or academic advisor as soon as possible to arrange accommodations for classes, assignments, tests and examinations that might be affected by a religious holiday or spiritual observance.

Topics and Readings:

The following is intended as a guideline of main topics covered each week. In order to accommodate at least two guest speakers, a few topics may be moved by one week. 

Week 1

  • Definitions of leadership; The Leadership Challenge Model; Syllabus overview

Week 2

  • Definitions and principles of mentorship; Planning the first meeting; The EAP learner

Week 3

  • Effective communication 1; Cultural assumptions; Emotional Intelligence

Week 4

  • Model the Way; Quiz 1; Values

Week 5

  • Inspire A Shared Vision; Quiz 2; Creating a vision

Week 6

  • Challenge the Process; Quiz 3; Guest speaker

Week 7 - Reading Week

Week 8

  • Enable others to Act; Quiz 4; Mental Health workshop; Effective communication 2

Week 9

  • Encourage the Heart; Quiz 5; Mentorship Check-in; Guest speaker
  • Presentation groups confirmed; presentation parameters

Week 10

  • Working in teams; dealing with conflict; Implicit bias; Effective presentations

Weeks 11 and 12

  • Presentations and feedback

Week 13

  • Necessity of leadership skills; Review and wrap-up

Other Course Information:

Avenue to Learn will be used extensively. We will be using it for assignment submissions and feedback, communication outside of class, materials (core content and supplementary materials), scheduling information (upcoming due dates), accountability group discussions.