Clinical - Funeral Service and Mortuary Science, General Syllabus for 2021-2022
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Instructor Information

Office Location

6222 W. 9th St. Bldg C, Room 101

Amarillo, Texas 79178


Office Hours

Spring II 2022

The best way to reach me outside of class time is to email me through the course in Blackboard (listed above). 

Course Information

COVID-19 Protocols

Recording Policy

Disability Statement

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Disability Services facilitates access to all programs and services according to the ADA, Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, as well as other federal and state laws.

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As a student you may experience a range of issues that can cause barriers to learning, such as strained relationships, increased anxiety, alcohol/drug problems, feeling down, difficulty concentrating and/or lack of motivation. These mental health concerns or stressful events may lead to diminished academic performance or reduce a student's ability to participate in daily activities. Amarillo College offers services to assist you with addressing these and other concerns you may be experiencing. If you or someone you know are suffering from any of the aforementioned conditions, you can learn more about the broad range of confidential mental health services available on campus by calling the AC Counseling Center at 806-371-5900. The AC Counseling Center website is . Also, if you are in need of social services (affordable housing, utilities, transportation, food, clothing, childcare, medical/dental/vision, legal), please call the AC Advocacy & Resource Center at 806-371-5439. The AC Advocacy & Resource Center website is

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The Tutoring for Success policy applies to any student whose grade or performance in the course falls below a departmentally determined minimum threshold. In either of those cases, the instructor will direct the student to the appropriate tutoring service, which may be faculty-led, discipline-specific, and/or general. Under this policy, the instructor will follow specific departmental guidelines governing the use, duration, and grade component of the tutoring need.

Administrative Drop Policy

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Student Withdrawal Procedures

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NOTE: Students who are attending Texas institutions of higher education, for the first time fall 2007 and later, may not withdraw from more than six courses during their academic career. This withdrawal limitation does not include dual credit or developmental classes (Senate Bill 1231 Rule 4.10.) For more information on Drop and Withdrawal Policies, please visit the Registrar's Office Web site.

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MRTS-1260-001 Clinical - Funeral Service and Mortuary Science, General


Prerequisite: MRTS 1310 Corequisite: MRTS 2342

Course Description

A health-related work-based learning experience that enables the student to apply specialized occupational theory, skills and concepts. Direct supervision is provided by the clinical professional. Focus and emphasis in this clinical experience will be concentrated in the area of funeral home management and funeral directing.

Student ResourcesStudent Resources Website

Department Expectations

Occupational License Disclaimer

Notice to Students enrolled in an educational program for preparation of issuance of certain occupational licenses:

Students enrolled in an educational program in preparation for obtaining certain occupational licenses are potentially ineligible for such license if the student has been convicted of an offense. For further information, please contact:

Melodie Graves
Justice Involved Advocate
Student Service Center 117
Make appointment at

You can also contact the Legal Clinic, or the faculty member in charge of the educational program that you seek to enroll in. The further information you will receive will include notification to you of your right to request a criminal history evaluation letter from the licensing authority in order to clarify your particular situation.


(2 sem hrs; 9 clinic)

Class Type


Syllabus Information


There are no textbooks for this course.  All content can be found in the course.  All clinical paperwork is found in the course and can be printed off.


TEXTBOOKS:  See textbooks on this syllabus (listed above).

COMPUTER or ACCESS TO A COMPUTER:  You MUST have access to a computer with active internet service, Mozilla Firefox (free download available & recommend), Microsoft Word, Adobe Acrobat, RealPlayer and exhibit computer competency.

PRINTER:  You must have a printer or access to one.  It is recommended you print off your weekly materials and create a notebook for the class.  It will help you remain organized and better prepared for success in this

Student Performance

  • Regular log-in and keeping current with all discussions, assignments, projects, quizzes, and exams are necessary for satisfactory achievement.  There is no foreseeable excuse for not being able to log on and complete any activity.  There are several libraries and numerous computer labs on the AC campus.  If your computer is inoperable, you should be responsible and make plans to access a computer at another location to do the work.  Incomplete work will result in a poor grade and may put you in danger of failing the course. YOU NEED TO CHECK YOUR ACTX EMAIL FREQUENTLY AS THIS IS HOW I WILL COMMUNICATE ANY ANNOUNCEMENTS OR CHANGES IN CURRICULUM
  • Follow guidelines set forth by the Mortuary Science Program and Amarillo College.
  • Communicate with me immediately if you are having difficulty with the course.


Minimum Competencies: After studying the material presented in this course of study, the student will be able to do the following as evaluated by the faculty in the Mortuary Science Department at Amarillo College.

  1. Explain effective listening skills as well as the elements of verbal and non-verbal communication.  Recognize effective communication skills.
  2. Assist any funeral director in basic skills required to facilitate an effective funeral including handling floral tributes, ushering attendees at services, supervising pallbearers, assisting with funeral processions and graveside services and be proficient in setting up facilities for family viewings.
  3. Exercise Universal precautions and utilize PPE gear when in contact with dead human remains or hazardous chemicals.
  4. Document the funeral service techniques and procedures with written reports.


Your completed Clinical Notebook (complete with all signatures required) is due in my office on December 10, 2021.

You will be completing assignments, participating in class discussions, and completing your funeral directing clinical's through the following outline:

1. Secure a clinical site location for the completion of 144 hours of clinical work throughout the semester. This work is to consist of funerals only (no embalming).

2. Download and print ALL clinical documents.  Fill out preliminary paperwork and obtain appropriate signatures required (preceptor/funeral establishment, etc.), and send these documents to the instructor.  Follow mailing directions at the bottom of this list.

3. Complete your clinical documents (throughout the semester).  I will sign my portion at the end of the semester when the completed notebook arrives.

4. Refer to the observation example for reference of how to prepare your written (paragraph form) observations.  If in doubt, please call me.

5. Complete a minimum of 10 observations/daily reports (known as the 'individual funeral director training reports'), you must fill out the comments section of each report to receive full credit.  You must participate in 10 funeral services.  The names of these individuals will be put on the 'individual funeral director training reports' along with a description of the activities you were involved in.  Include a copy of the deceased's memorial folder at the end of the semester.  Keep in mind, if you go in for clinical hours on a day there are no funerals, fill out a report and make note that there were no funerals, but what you did do while there.  Therefore, you may have more than 10 daily observations turned in at the end of the semester.

6. Obtain a 3-ring notebook to place all clinical documents in. Also, all copies of completed assignments and discussion posts should be included.  DO NOT PLACE WORK IN INDIVIDUAL PLASTIC SLEEVES. I WILL COUNT OFF IF YOU DO THATBe sure your name and course number are on the front of the notebook. (This will be turned in or mailed in at the end of the semester.) You WILL be graded on neatness as well.  Therefore, we strongly suggest using labeled dividers to separate the different sections. Also, MAKE A COMPLETE COPY OF YOUR NOTEBOOK JUST IN CASE IT GETS LOST WHEN BEING MAILED TO ME.  This HAS happened in the past.

7. Place all of your documents in order in your folder as well as a copy of all exercises/assignments. It really is easier to keep up with this as you go all semester instead of trying to get caught up and finish all at once a week before the assignment is due.

8. Make sure your complete folder/binder with all documents are postmarked no later than December 6, 2021. Your completed Clinical Notebook (complete with all signatures required) is due in my office on December 10, 2021.  This counts as a Final Exam so it is a very important assignment.  Failure to turn it in on time will result in a ZERO in the grade book.  Remember to make a complete copy for yourself and when mailing, I strongly suggest sending it certified mail, return receipt requested so you are notified by the postal service that it has arrived.  Allow 5 business days for certified mail, return receipt requested.  As the notebooks arrive, I will send you an email alerting you that I have received your notebook.  Please mail your notebooks to my mailbox at:

Amarillo College

Attn:  Patricia Garcia-Instructor Mortuary Science


PO Box 447

Amarillo, Texas 79178

Students Rights and Responsibilities

Student Rights and Responsibilities

Log in using the AC Connect Portal

In order to receive your AC Connect Email, you must log in through AC Connect at .

If you are an active staff or faculty member according to Human Resources, use "Exchange". All other students, use "AC Connect (Google) Email".

Expected Student Behavior



  1. Log-in DAILY and check your email DAILY.
  2. Read the assigned textbook material.
  3. Read all other assigned material.
  4. If in doubt, ask...
  5. Actively participate in discussions (these are graded and are considered class participation).
  6. Do not judge other students.
  7. Respect each other’s opinions.
  8. Respect deadlines and turn in assignments on time.
  9. DO NOT procrastinate. (As the saying goes...a lack of planning on your part does NOT constitute an emergency on mine.)

*Academic dishonesty will not be tolerated in this class and will result in a grade of on the exam or assignment involved that cannot be replaced or dropped. Please see Student Rights and Responsibilities for a specific description of academic dishonesty. Any cases of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Students at Amarillo College.

“Plagiarism: Offering the work of another as one’s own, without proper acknowledgment, is plagiarism; therefore, any student who fails to give credit for quotations or an essentially identical expression of material taken from books, encyclopedias, magazines, and other reference works, or from themes, reports, or other writings of a fellow student, is guilty of plagiarism.” “Collusion” shall be defined as the unauthorized collaboration with another person in preparing written work for the fulfillment of course requirements.  Taken from the "Students Rights and Responsibilities"

Grading Criteria

Grading Scale ** PLEASE NOTE NEW GRADING SCALE AS OF 1/21/2020

  • A=100-96
  • B=95-88
  • C=87-80
  • F= 79 and below
  •  (To pass the State and National Board Exams, you must score a 75 or better.  Please note that
  • we gear our grading policy towards that standard.  Be aware of this as you take this class and all other MRTS courses.)
  • Per our Amarillo College Course Guide for the Mortuary Science Program:

    To continue in the program, a student may repeat an MRTS course only one time and may repeat no more than two MRTS courses while enrolled in the program. The term “repeat” shall be interpreted to mean re-enrollment following withdrawal, drop, or unsatisfactory grade. A grade of C or higher is required for satisfactory completion of all major course requirements, PSYT 1325 or HPRS 2301. Students who receive an F in two or more major course requirements, PSYT 1325 or HPRS 2301 will be removed from the program. A student will have 36 months to complete all major requirements.

Each student is responsible for ensuring the integrity of his/her own work.  Cases of academic dishonesty will result in either zero points or administrative with drawl from the Mortuary Science Program.  There will be no tolerance for missed due dates, assignments, projects, quizzes, or tests.  IT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO GET ASSIGNMENTS TURNED IN ON TIME.  If you wait until the semester is over to resolve an issue with missing assignments, projects, exams, etc., then it will be too late.  ALWAYS KEEP COPIES OF YOUR WORK (projects, assignments, clinical paperwork, etc.).  Students should have a backup plan for computer problems.  Most public libraries have internet access for students' use.

ALL course work is expected to be typed with correct grammar, punctuation, and spelling.  PROOFREAD your work before submitting it.  Failure to do so will result in a lower grade.

Grading Criteria

Your grades for this class will be broken down into the following categories.  Each category will count a percentage towards your final grade. 

  • Discussions - 10% of your final grade
  • Assignments/Exercises/Online Collaborations - 20% of your final grade
  • Project: Two Phone Arrangement Conference/Obituary - 25% of your final grade
  • Clinical Notebook - 45% of your final grade

Grade Calculation:

  • Class Discussions Count as 10% of your final grade. Participation Grading Scale:

  • In addition to a 200-word minimum on your original post and a 50-100-word minimum for your replies to two other students’ posts; correct grammar, punctuation, and spelling will be considered:
  • Outstanding Contributor: Contributions in class reflect exceptional preparation. Ideas offered are always substantive, provide one or more major insights as well as direction for the class. Challenges are well substantiated and persuasively presented.
  • Good Contributor: Contributions in class reflect thorough preparation. Ideas offered are usually substantive, provide good insights and sometimes direction for the class. Challenges are well substantiated and often persuasive.
  • Adequate Contributor: Contributions in class reflect satisfactory preparation. Ideas offered are sometimes substantive, provide generally useful insights but seldom offer a new direction for the discussion. Challenges are sometimes presented, fairly well-substantiated, and are sometimes persuasive.
  • Non-Participant: This person says little or nothing in class. Hence, there is not an adequate basis for evaluation.
  • Unsatisfactory Contributor: Contributions in class discussions reflect inadequate preparation. Ideas offered are seldom substantive, provide few if any insights, and never a constructive direction for the class. Integrative comments and effective challenges are absent.

  • 20% Assignments/Exercises/Online Collaborations –  The due dates will be listed in Blackboard. 

*Online Collaborations (2)

There are TWO scheduled Online Collaborations.  If you miss both collaboration sessions, your class grade will drop by one letter grade.  These collaborations are for YOUR benefit and are specifically scheduled to help you when you need it.  Please plan on attending both of these.

  • 25% Project: Two Phone Mock Arrangements Conference/Obituary –  This is a major grade that we will discuss as the time approaches.  You will be a “funeral director setting up an arrangement for me for a relative who has passed away.  I will attach a grading rubric for your performance.  You will write an obituary for that relative.  We will schedule these as the time approaches.
  • 45% Clinical Notebook: The Clinical Notebook will replace a Final Exam in this course. A grading rubric is included at the end of the Syllabus.


·If an assignment/project is not completed and turned in by 11:59 PM of the due date, you will receive a ZERO (0) for the assignment. No exceptions unless prior arrangements have been made with me IN ADVANCE OF THE DUE DATE.

Class Writing Assignments:

Format for all assignments.











Title page


 IF YOUR assignment calls for THREE typed, double-spaced pages PLUS a Bibliography and you turn in TWO and ONE-HALF pages plus a Bibliography, you will receive a grade of ZERO on that assignment.


APA style


  • Use 8.5” x 11” paper
  • Type double-spaced with 1” margins on all edges.
  • The page number should be in the top right corner.
  • Indent each new paragraph
  • Use Times Roman 12 pt. font.

 Every assignment you turn in must have the following cover page attached. If the cover page is missing 10 points will be deducted from your grade.

 Title of paper

Student's Name

MRTS 1260 Fall 2021

Instructor Garcia


ONLINE ATTENDANCE:  This is an online course and is intended to give you flexibility.  However, it is still the same time frame of a full 16-week semester.  You are expected to log-in DAILY.  You are expected to CHECK YOUR EMAIL DAILY.  Often, changes have to be made and are announced through course e-mail and announcements.  If you fail to log-in regularly, you may miss vital information concerning changes within the course.  Online learning requires the student to be disciplined to keep up with online participation, assignments, scheduled quizzes, and exams.   IT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO GET ASSIGNMENTS AND SUCH TURNED IN AND IN ON TIME.  If you wait until the semester is over to resolve an issue with missing assignments, projects, exams, etc., then it will be too late.

COURSE COMMUNICATION:  The instructor will make announcements through course email and course announcements.  It is IMPORTANT that you log-in at daily not only for course material but for emails and announcements as well.

DEADLINE TO DROP THE COURSE*:  November 23,  2021
*You must contact the instructor to approve your withdrawal request and sign your form PRIOR to this deadline.  The withdrawal form is posted in the class in Blackboard.


NOTE:  This class is set up for a 16-week semester.  I have divided the course into 8 Modules.  Each module contains two weeks of materials, assignments, quizzes/exams and such.  I will open a new module every two weeks with Module 1 being opened on the first class day.  Module 2 will be opened on the first day of Week 3 and so on.  Below is a calendar describing what will be presented each module and week

**TENTATIVE SCHEDULE: This schedule is subject to change by the instructor at any time. Please refer to the class schedule listed in Blackboard for specific due dates.


 Module 1 – Week 1

  • Welcome & Getting Started
  • Understanding the Course Syllabus/Syllabus through
  • Online Collaboration (Times will be announced)  
  • Syllabus Quiz due 
  • Signed Syllabus (Complete Copy) due 
  • Print off Clinical Documents Located in Module 1

Module 1 – Week 2

  • Secure Site for Clinical Work
  • Preliminary Clinical Paperwork due 
  • Read:  Active Listening and Response Techniques

Module 2 – Week 3

  • Log your Clinical work daily & have preceptor sign or initial
  • Discussion: “Ethical Analysis” Original Post due
  • Exercise #2:  ARRANGEMENT CONFERENCE PREPARATION (See instructions) due
  • ALL CLINICAL DOCUMENTS due in my office 
  • Signed Syllabus (Complete Copy) due in my office 
  • Read:  Counseling in Funeral Service/The Funeral Director as Grief Counselor

Module 2 – Week 4

  • Log your Clinical work daily & have preceptor sign or initial
  • Discussion: “Ethical Analysis” Follow-up Posts (2) due
  • Exercise #2:  ARRANGEMENT CONFERENCE PREPARATION (See instructions) Due
  • Print off Project Instructions: Phone “Mock Arrangement Conference”/Obituary.  This is a major grade
  • Read:  Objectives in Funeral Counseling/The Liability of Grief Counseling

Module 3 – Week 5

  • Log your Clinical work daily & have preceptor sign or initial
  • Discussion: “First Call” Original post Due
  • Read:  Grief Facilitation/The Psychology Subtest-Glossary

Module 3 – Week 6

  • Log your Clinical work daily & have preceptor sign or initial
  • Discussion: “First Call” Follow-up Posts (2) due
  • Read:  Tasks of Mourning

Module 4 – Week 7

  • Print out Mock Arrangement Conference Call Worksheet
  • Log your Clinical work daily & have preceptor sign or initial
  • Mock Arrangement Conferences Appointments to be held October 8  (You call in for appointment time.)
  • Discussion: “Provisional Licensee Removal” Original Post
  •                      Due
  • Read: Understanding Resumes and How to Create a Resume

Module 4 – Week 8

  • Log your Clinical work daily & have preceptor sign or initial
  • Discussion: “Provisional Licensee Removal”
  •                     Follow-up Posts (2) Due
  •                       Due (See Instructions)
    •                      Due 
  • Print out Mock Arrangement Conference Call Worksheet

Module 5 – Week 9

  • Log your Clinical work daily & have preceptor sign or initial
  • Discussion: “Damaged Casket” Original Post
  •                      Due
  • Exercise #5:  BUILD YOUR OWN RESUME
  •                      Due

Module 5–Week 10

  • Log your Clinical work daily & have preceptor sign or initial
  • Discussion: “Damaged Casket” Follow-up Posts (2)
  •                      Due
  • Read: Sudden Death Loss Issues
  • Read:  Personal Impact of Grief

Module 6–Week 11

  • Log your Clinical work daily & have preceptor sign or initial
  • Read:  Understanding G.P.L.’s
  • Discussion: “Loving Hands” Original Post
  •                      Due
  • Exercise #6:  G.P.L. ASSIGNMENT
  •                     Due
  • Mock Arrangement Conferences Appointments Set

Module 6–Week 12

  • Log your Clinical work daily & have preceptor sign or initial Discussion: “Loving Hands” Follow-up Posts (2)
  •                      Due
  • Exercise #6:  G.P.L. ASSIGNMENT
  •                     Due
  • Mock Arrangement Conferences Appointments to be held November 5  (You call in for appointment time.)
  • Look at the information in TFSC Folder 

Module 7–Week 13

  • Log your Clinical work daily & have preceptor sign or initial
  • Discussion: “Missing Money” Original Post
  •                      Due

Module 7–Week 14

  • Log your Clinical work daily & have preceptor sign or initial
  • Exercise #7:  PERSONAL OBITUARY
  •                       Due
  • Discussion: “Missing Money” Follow-up Posts (2)
  •                      Due
  • TFSC Worksheet due next week
  • Finish logging your Clinical work. Have ALL forms initialed and signed by your preceptor.  Mail your Clinical Notebooks this week in order for them to arrive by December 10.

Module 8–Week 15

  • Clinical Notebooks due December 10
  • All Discussions and assignments that have not been submitted not turned in by mid-week will receive no credit and will result in a ZERO in the grade book.

Module 8–Week 16

  • Finals Week this week and next week (not in this course)
  • Graduation Friday, December 17, 2021


Additional Information


If a student has a grievance with the course instructor, the following "due process" protocol will apply.  The student must follow the protocol steps in the order shown.

  1. Make every effort to resolve the concern directly with the course instructor.  The instructor should be contacted by the student before the conclusion of the course.
  2. If the concern cannot be resolved to the satisfaction of the student after meeting with the course instructor, the student should seek satisfaction from the immediate supervisor of the instructor within one week of the student-instructor meeting.
  3. If the concern cannot be resolved to the satisfaction of the student after meeting with the Allied Health division chairperson, the student should seek satisfaction from Dean of Health Sciences within one week of the student-division chairperson meeting.
  4. If the concern cannot be resolved to the satisfaction of the student after meeting with the dean, the student should seek satisfaction from the Vice-President of Academic Affairs (VPAA) within one week of the Student-Dean meeting.
  5. If the concern cannot be resolved to the satisfaction of the student after meeting with the Vice-President of Academic Affairs, the student should seek satisfaction from the college President within one week of the student-VPAA meeting.  The decision of the President will be final.

I have read the above information and I hereby am in accordance with the obligations set before me by signature________________________________________________.

Syllabus Created on:

08/03/21 3:40 PM

Last Edited on:

08/03/21 4:42 PM