AR320 Ceramics I

for FA 2004

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AR320 – Ceramics I


Term:          Fall 2004


Thomas Smith

Assistant Professor of Graphic Design


Office:          Underground, 800

Office Hours: MWF 10;50AM – 12:15PM

Phone:         (816) 584-6758


Term:          August 23 – December 10

Room:         The Root House (Ceramics Lab)

Class Days:   T - R

Class Time:   8:45 AM – 11:25 AM

Prerequisite: None

Credits:        3 Hrs.

Lab:             (816) 584-6370

                   (Note – leave messages here per excused class absences)


Mission Statement

The mission of Park University, an entrepreneurial institution of learning, is to provide access to academic excellence, which will prepare learners to think critically, communicate effectively and engage in lifelong learning while serving a global community.


Vision Statement

Park University will be a renowned international leader in providing innovative educational opportunities for learners within the global society.


Course Description

An introduction to clay processes emphasizing hand building techniques, glazing and firing 1:5:3


Educational Philosophy: The ability to think critically and communicate is essential to both art and design. All students are individuals and as a teacher I believe they should learn in a unique individual manner.  Knowledge creation is a subtle process with widely varying needs. The individual’s desire for knowledge is multifaceted.  As a teacher it is my responsibility to foster that desire. Therefore, I try to plant ideas in the most diverse forms, in the hope that they not conform, but become themselves.


Course Textbook None Required. Handouts and reference materials will be available in the studio.


Optional Purchase

Kemper Ceramic Tool Kit from Bracker Ceramic Supply, Lawrence, Ks or KC Art and Crafts, Westport, MO


Course Objectives

After completing Ceramics I, students will be able to:

·         Conceptualize and create original work in clay.

·         Produce work using hand-building techniques of pinching, coiling and slab construction.

·         Describe various attributes of ceramics with the appropriate vocabulary.

·         Understand and use various glaze techniques.

·         Develop ideas through the use of a sketchbook and maintain lecture notes.

·         Critically examine finished work.

·         Correctly operate and care for permanent equipment in the ceramics lab.



Academic Honesty: “Academic Honesty is required of all members of a learning community.  Hence, Park will not tolerate cheating or plagiarism on tests, examinations, papers or other course assignments.  Students who engage in such dishonesty may be given failing grades or expelled from Park.”

Plagiarism:  Plagiarism—the appropriation or imitation of the language or ideas of another person and presenting them as one’s original work—sometimes occurs through carelessness or ignorance.  Students who are uncertain about proper documentation of sources should consult their instructors.”



Attendance Policy:  Instructors are required to keep attendance records and report absences.

 The instructor may excuse absences for cogent reasons, but missed work must be made up within the term of enrollment.  Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.  In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of “F”.  An Incomplete will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.  Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance (TA) or Veterans Administration (VA) educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.  Reports of F grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for students receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned above will be reported to the appropriate agency.


Athletes:  By the end of the second week, (Sept. 3) please turn in a list of specific class sessions you anticipate needing to cut, signed by your coach.  With that information it may be possible to make plans to compensate you for the missed time.


.          Course Requirements

·         Hand-constructed forms

·         Two coiled forms

·         Two pinched forms

·         One slab form

          These works may follow traditional ceramics (bowls, cups, etc.) and/or sculptural problems. Hand-constructed forms must be over 5” in height


·         Semester Project

Using the three hand-building techniques you have learned, combine them toward a finished work of art. Finished work should be roughly 12” in height.


The above projects are the minimum requirement for a passing grade. All additional projects developed during the semester may be submitted for extra credit.



·         Studio Projects

Workmanship                        20%

Design                                 20%

Creativity                              20%

Growth and Development         20%


·         Class Participation                        20%

          (Discussion, attendance, work habits, clean up, etc.)


My Attendance Policy

This lab provides a “hands on” learning environment for each student.  It is essential that the student make a conscientious effort to attend every class to optimize the opportunity for use of this technology. Final grade is influenced after three unexcused absences. If the student misses four consecutive class periods without informing the instructor, the student may be removed from the class roster.


Class critiques are part of the completion of each assigned project. Students who fail to attend a critique will lose one letter grade on that project. In the event you cannot attend, phone the instructor.



DISABILITY GUIDELINES: Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance.  These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal.  It is Park University’s policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the American with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities and, to the extent of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply.  Additional information concerning Park University’s policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page:



Firing will continue throughout the semester. A cut-off time for final glaze firings will be posted. No work will be accepted for firing after this date.