February 2, 2024

Syllabus/Course Information

ITE 140-001N - Spreadsheet Software I, Spring 2024 (3 credits) -15 weeks, MW 2:20-3:40PM via Zoom
ITE 140-001A - Spreadsheet Software I, Spring 2024 (3 credits) -15 weeks, MW 7:00-8:20PM via Zoom

Software and Hardware

Microsoft Excel 2021 is the focus of this course. Although Excel 2021 is available in the NVCC open labs, students ideally will have Excel on a home Windows computer. VCCS students can get Excel and other programs for free - see the section on Office 365 at https://resources.vccs.edu/Microsoft-office

Older versions of Excel - The Pearson text we used in Fall 2023 was for Excel 2021. On my computer, I had Excel 2019 and I was able to do almost everything. A student using Excel 2016 encountered a lot more difficulty.

Macintosh - There are likely to be a few things in the course that you can't do on a Macintosh and when I am giving instructions while teaching, I often do not give the Mac instructions to save time. A student last semester was having difficulty when using a Mac and switching to a Windows computer helped. Perhaps others were using a Mac with no difficulty.

There are several alternatives:

  1. The open computer labs have a limited number of Windows laptop computers with Excel 2021 that you can check out for an extended period
  2. There are additional sources of Windows computers - email me if you are interested and the open labs don't have one available
  3. NVCC has a virtual computer lab where students using a Mac or a Chromebook can access the virtual computer lab for a Windows Excel 2021 environment. I have tried this some but never spent enough time with this so that access became easy.

Textbook and MindTap (required)

We will do all 11 chapters of the textbook. The first three chapters are identical to those in ITE 152.

To do the assignments in this class, you must have access to the textbook and MindTap. In some courses, a book is listed as required and you can complete the course without it; that is not the case here. There are two ways to get the text with MindTap.

1) From the NVCC bookstore (https://nvcc.bncollege.com/)

Digital version of the text and MindTap for 180 days: - $177.30
Used print version of the text and MindTap $184.02
New print version of the text and MindTap $245.36

Although the bookstore site lists the first choice as required and the second and third choices as recommended, the second and third choices include the Digital version of the text and MindTap that is the first choice. Thus if you choose either the second or third choice, do not choose the first choice in addition to the first choice.

2) From Cengage - Access for 4 months $129.99 and free rental of textbook (pay only shipping and handling) - in your Canvas ITE 140 course, click the item "Access MindTap/eBook here"

The first choice might be best for those on financial aid or who desire a permanent print version of the text. If you are taking other courses this semester with Cengage material, the second alternative (Cengage unlimited) may be preferable.

To access MindTap, in the Canvas course, click "Access MindTap/eBook here". You will then be taken to a screen where you can enter an access code (if you buy the book from the bookstore, that should provide you an access code) or click the "Continue" button where you can buy from Cengage -- I'm told either the $129 or $137 option will work.

Course Structure and Grading

There are 11 modules. Each module is divided into two sections. Items in the first section (Learning Activities) do not affect your course grade but are designed to prepare you for the items in the second section (Assessment) which determine your course grade. In class lectures, I plan to do the "Textbook Project" in the Assessment section. Submission for the "Textbook Project" will be graded by the instructor and those labelled "SAM" which will be auto-graded.

Your course grade will be determined according to the following points.

Assignment Points
Discussion - Introduction (Complete/Incomplete) 0

11 Excel TextBook Projects (20 Points each)

11 SAM Projects (30 Points each) 330

2 Discussion Boards (25 points each)


Exam 1 (Modules 1-3)

  • Exam 1 Part A (proctored assessment; 65 points)
  • Exam 1 Part B (Application; 65 points)

Exam 2 (Modules 4-7)

  • Exam 2 Part A (proctored assessment; 65 points)
  • Exam 2 Part B (Application; 65 points)

Exam 3 (Modules 8-11)

  • Exam 3 Part A (proctored assessment, 70 points)
  • Exam 3 Part B (Application, 70 points)
Discussion - Final Reflection


Total Points 1000

Platforms such as MindTap sometimes only grade your final result but in other cases may attempt to grade you on the steps to get to the final result. In these cases, they will generally allow various ways to accomplish a given task but sometimes may not accommodate every possible way. I do not plan on doing adjustments to grades when there are deductions relating to particular steps in the solution as opposed to the final result.


Quickly Attendance will be used do attendance. I do not use attendance in any way in assigning course letter grades. I only use attendance records in two ways. First, if the student has not attended any class prior to the Census Date (Thursday, February 1), the instructor may administratively withdraw the student from the class. Second, if the student fails the course, the college requires the instructor to enter the last date of attendance, in particular was it before the 60% point in the semester (March 23 for this class) or after that. I expect to do the same material in the afternoon and evening class each Monday and Wednesday so you are welcome to attend the other section if that is more convenient on a given day. If you do that, email me afterwards so that I can record you as attending that day. Watching the Zoom recording for a particular class day does not count at attending that day.

Office Hours

Office hours will be done at the end of class for quick questions and by arrangement for longer sessions. The URL for Zoom office hours is posted on Canvas. If you wish to meet with me, email me and we can find a mutually agreeable time.

Communication with Students

For general class announcements and messages to individual students, I will use Canvas so make sure Canvas is set up so you see these promptly. To access your notification settings, click your picture at the top of your toolbar at the left and then choose Notifications. You can set these for individual courses if you like.

If you email me at wpegram@nvcc.edu, please remember to include your name and whether you are in the afternoon or evening class. For messages and announcements from the college, sign up for Nova alerts (http://alert.nvcc.edu) if you haven't already done so - you can get text messages and emails to addresses you specify.


All class sessions will be conducted over Zoom. Students are encouraged, but not required to turn their camera on with the exception of exams which are monitored through Respondus Monitor where a camera is required. I am emailed when the recording of a Zoom session is available and I then need to publish it before it is available to you. The Zoom recording for the afternoon class will generally be available before 7pm that day and the recording of the evening class will be available either that evening or the next morning. To access the recording, click on the Zoom link at the left in Canvas and then the "Cloud Recordings" tab at the right.

Instructor Recordings

Before each day's lecture, I plan to record several short recordings on the topics in that module and post them in Canvas for that module. These recordings should be helpful as a reference on a specific topic as an alternative to finding the discussion of the topic in the Zoom recording. I may also post similar recordings I did last semester when we were using the Pearson text.

Academic Integrity

On homework assignments, students may ask for and receive some assistance from others. No assistance is permitted on the three exams in the course and your use of the computer will be monitored, typically by Respondus Lockdown browser. The college policy on student conduct is found at www.nvcc.edu/students/handbook/conduct.html

Assignment Deadlines

SAM assignments are auto-graded and there is no penalty for late submission of these. Since the "Textbook Projects" are graded by the instructor, there may be penalties for late submission. Students are encouraged to keep up. I know I work better with deadlines so you should do what is best for you. Given that the exams test particular chapters (1-3, 4-7, 8-11) you would want to do the assignments for those chapters before taking the exam. and exam dates may not be flexible.

Dropping or Withdrawal from the class

For a 15 week class, the last day to drop with a tuition refund or change to audit is Thursday, February 1. Saturday, March 23 is the last day to withdraw without grade penalty in a 15 week course. The award of W after the last day to withdraw requires official documentation and the Dean's signature which is probably difficult to get. If a student does not attend at least one class meeting via Zoom by February 1, his/her class registration will be administratively deleted unless you contact me. Watching a Zoom recording after a class does not satisfy this requirement since I am not provided information on whether you watch a recording. If you are administratively deleted, there is no record of the class or any grade on your student transcript. Furthermore, your class load will be reduced by the course credits, this this may affect your full-time or part-time student status. Tuition will not be refunded.

Requests for incompletes are extremely rare in my experience, perhaps once every five years or so.

Disability Accommodation

Please email me your accommodation letter as early as possible.

Tutoring Assistance

In addition to help from me, there are at least three sources of other assistance

  1. 24/7 Tutoring link at the left side in Canvas - One of my Excel students last semester found this very helpful. He used several different tutors in this service and found one he liked the most
  2. Each campus has a tutoring center - this is for general study and other skills rather than assistance with Excel
  3. The IET division hires "lab assistants" to provide help with IET courses. The tutoring is through Zoom and is scheduled through Navigate which is accessed through your myNOVA account under Applications. See the writeup "New Student Guide to Tutoring IET" in Canvas in the module "NVCC Resources" at the top.

Student Success Tips

Although I do use attendance in determining class grades, some of what I say in class isn't in the text and it may be easier for you to understand something if you hear me explain it or hear the comments of fellow students.