Course Syllabus

Course Syllabus


General Information

Course:                        Business Continuity and Disaster Planning

Course & Section:       FES 6827

Session:                       Summer 2022

Credit Hours:              3

Course Format:           Web-based Distance Learning.  On-line meetings will be scheduled. 

Instructor:                   Dr. Dennis Mitterer


Phone: 717-201-8322

OFFICE HOURS:    I can be contacted at any time. I check emails daily and should respond to any requests within 24 hours.

COURSE COMMUNICATIONS:  Each semester students have many questions regarding course content and procedures. Questions pertaining to the good of all should be posted in the discussion board. Any question that is personal in nature should be sent to me through my email address or the Canvas mail tool. Under Florida law, any written communication created or received through the University of Florida is subject to disclosure to the public and the media, upon request, unless otherwise exempt. If you do not want your message or email address released in response to a public records request, do not send electronic mail to this address.  Instead, contact me by phone.

Course Website:


Dr. Mitterer has worked in EMS for over 30 years as an EMT and Paramedic, Operations Chief, and educator. He has earned a Master’s Degree in Management from Penn State University’s Smeal Business College, a nursing degree from Excelsior University, a Bachelor of Science in nursing from Penn State University and has earned the designation as a Certified Safety Professional (CSP), and Associate in Risk Management (ARM). He earned his Ph.D. in Leadership and Organizational change from Walden University.

As a member of the faculty for Western Governor's University he guides adult students through their course of study in Finance, Research and Statistics, Technology Application, and Risk Management. Dr. Mitterer previously taught for the Pa College of Health Sciences and was a Faculty Advisor for EMS at Franklin & Marshall College. He taught as an Adjunct Professor for Lebanon Valley College’ master’s program, Immaculata College where he taught; Management, Strategic Planning, Human Resources and Research, and Harrisburg Area Community College where he instructed in the Paramedic program. As a nationally recognized speaker and writer, Dr. Mitterer challenges audiences to think creatively about EMS topics.

Professional affiliations include; American Society of Safety Engineers, American College of Healthcare Executives, National Association of EMS Educators, National Association of EMTs and the Institute for Behavioral and Applied Management.

Teaching Philosophy:  I am looking for students to demonstrate a working knowledge of the subject. You need to be creative when you complete your assignments but maintain a professional appearance of your work. Your work needs to be complete and in such a manner that someone can pick up your document and understand what you are trying to convey. And most of all your work needs to be supported with research and cited in properly in APA format.

Required Text:

Susan Snedake, Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Planning for IT Professionals, Syngress, 2014. ISBN: 978-0-12-410526-3

Course Description: Addresses risks from cyber attacks, rioting, protests, product tampering, bombs, explosions, and terrorism. Extensive disaster planning and readiness checklists and developing alternate work and computing sites and emergency facilities.

Purpose of Course: To provide students skills that will enable them to become proficient in assessing risks and developing plans for business continuity.

Course Goals and/or Objectives: By the end of this course, students will:

  1. Analyze and interpret data that will help them assess risks from disasters.
  2. Communicate and defend their risk assessment.
  3. Be proficient in developing disaster plans and readiness checklists.

Instructional Methods: The course is designed for individual and group interactivity. It is important to post and respond to discussion questions in the course within the time frame allotted. This provides a learning environment by networking with other students in the course. The assignments are individual base to give you the opportunity to do a variety of activities, in many cases, similar to what you will be doing in role as a leader in the emergency services profession.

ASSIGNMENTS & DISCUSSIONS:  All assignments and discussions have a due date. Please be sure to check the dates and times they are due in each module. All due dates are set in order to provide consistency with the discussions and assignment submission. Each module will be opened early so you have time to read the material, formulate and answer discussions and finish and submit the assignment. Each discussion and assignment will be closed one week after the due date.

Course Policies

ATTENDANCE POLICY:  The course is designed in module format. You should check the site at a minimum, weekly. You are required to complete the assignments including discussion questions within the time period designated on the module. Requirements for class attendance and make-up exams, assignments, and other work in this course are consistent with university policies that can be found at:

Quiz/Exams:  There is a final project for this course. There are no exams or quizzes.

Assignments:  All assignments have a due date. Please be sure to check the date and time it is due in each module.


  • Assignments up to 48 hours late will receive a 10% deduction in their grade.
  • Assignments more than 48 hours but less than 30 days late will receive a 20% deduction in their grade.
  • Assignments more than 30 days late but submitted during the semester will receive a 50% deduction in their grade.
  • Discussions up to 48 hours late will receive a 10% deduction in their grade.
  • Discussions more than 48 hours later will receive a 50% deduction in their grade.

When posting on the Discussion Board in your online class, you should:

  • Make posts that are on topic and within the scope of the course material.
  • Take your posts seriously and review and edit your posts before sending.
  • Be as brief as possible while still making a thorough comment.
  • Always give proper credit when referencing or quoting another source.
  • Be sure to read all messages in a thread before replying.
  • Don’t repeat someone else’s post without adding something of your own to it.
  • Avoid short, generic replies such as, “I agree.” Include why you agree or add to the previous point.
  • Always be respectful of others’ opinions even when they differ from your own.
  • When you disagree with someone, you should express your differing opinion in a respectful, non-critical way.
  • Do not make personal or insulting remarks.
  • Be open-minded.

Please note that any student that have less than 75% of their work complete for the semester cannot earn an “I” contract. If you have 75% of the work complete, you can propose an “I” contract to the instructor.

It is your responsibility to keep your instructor informed at all times. The instructor does have the right under extenuating circumstances with proper notification to assist the student by extending the above time requirements.

COURSE TECHNOLOGY:  Class meetings may require a web camera and mic/audio. If you are not able to use a web camera you will need to at least provide audio/mic, you can call in on a phone also. Otherwise, discussions and assignments will be web based and submissions will occur electronically. If technology help is required, please contact the UF Help Desk at:

ONLINE COURSE EVALUATION:  Students are expected to provide professional and respectful feedback on the quality of instruction in this course by completing course evaluations online via GatorEvals. Guidance on how to provide feedback in a professional and respectful manner is available at Students will be notified when the evaluation period opens, and can complete evaluations through the email they receive from GatorEvals, in their Canvas course menu under GatorEvals. Summaries of the course evaluation results are available to students at

UF Policies

UNIVERSITY POLICY ON ACCOMMODATING STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES: “Students with disabilities requesting accommodations should first register with the Disability Resource Center (352-392-8565, by providing appropriate documentation. Once registered, students will receive an accommodation letter which must be presented to the instructor when requesting accommodation. Students with disabilities should follow this procedure as early as possible in the semester.”

UNIVERSITY POLICY ON ACADEMIC CONDUCT:  UF students are bound by The Honor Pledge which states, “We, the members of the University of Florida community, pledge to hold ourselves and our peers to the highest standards of honesty and integrity by abiding by the Honor Code. On all work submitted for credit by students at the University of Florida, the following pledge is either required or implied: "On my honor, I have neither given nor received unauthorized aid in doing this assignment."  The Honor Code ( specifies a number of behaviors that are in violation of this code and the possible sanctions. Furthermore, you are obligated to report any condition that facilitates academic misconduct to appropriate personnel. If you have any questions or concerns, please consult with the instructor or TAs in this class.

CLASS DEMEANOR OR NETIQUETTE: All members of the class are expected to follow rules of common courtesy in all email messages, threaded discussions and chats.

When communicating online, you should always:

  • Treat everyone with respect, even in email or in any other online communication.
  • Use clear and concise language.
  • Remember that all college level communication should have correct spelling and grammar.
  • Avoid slang terms such as “wassup?” and texting abbreviations such as “u” instead of “you”.
  • Use standard fonts such as Times New Roman and use a size 12 or 14 pt. font.
  • Avoid using the caps lock feature AS IT CAN BE INTERPRETTED AS YELLING.
  • Be cautious when using humor or sarcasm as tone is sometimes lost in an email or discussion post and your message might be taken seriously or offensive.
  • Be careful with personal information (both yours and other’s).

Any requests for make-ups due to technical issues MUST be accompanied by the ticket number received from LSS when the problem was reported to them. The ticket number will document the time and date of the problem. You MUST e-mail your instructor within 24 hours of the technical difficulty if you wish to request a make-up.

Other resources are available HERE for:

  • Counseling and Wellness resources
  • Disability resources
  • Resources for handling student concerns and complaints
  • Library Help Desk support

Should you have any complaints with your experience in this course please visit  HERE to submit a complaint.

Grading Policies

The grade is based on a point system. You divide the total number of earned points into the total amount of points available to determine your grade. A grading rubric for the final project is under the Files Tab on the course.



Points or percentage

Grading Discussion Participation – 10 points each discussion

350 points

Homework Assignments – 20 points each assignment

700 points

Final Project - comprehensive and applied

400 points

Total Grade

1450 points


Grading Scale:

A   = 94.0 to 100  (1363 - 1450 points)      C   = 74.0 to 76.9 (1073 - 1115 points)
A-  = 90.0 to 93.9 (1305 - 1362 points)      C-  = 70.0 to 73.9 (1015 - 1072 points)
B+ = 87.0 to 89.9 (1261 - 1304 points)      D+ = 67.0 to 69.9 (971 - 1014 points)
B   = 84.0 to 86.9 (1218 - 1260 points)      D   = 64.0 to 66.9 (928 - 970 points)
B-  = 80.0 to 83.9 (1160 - 1217 points)      D-  = 61 to 63.9 (884 - 927 points)
C+ = 77.0 to 79.9 (1116 - 1159 points)       F   = below 61  (<884 points)


To convert the final grade to credit hours please refer to by using the link to the web page:

Evaluation process

Students are expected to provide professional and respectful feedback on the quality of instruction in this course by completing course evaluations online via GatorEvals. Guidance on how to give feedback in a professional and respectful manner is available at Students will be notified when the evaluation period opens, and can complete evaluations through the email they receive from GatorEvals, in their Canvas course menu under GatorEvals, or via Summaries of course evaluation results are available to students at”

Disclaimer:  This syllabus represents my current plans and objectives. As we go through the semester, those plans may need to change to enhance the class learning opportunity. Such changes, communicated clearly, are not unusual and should be expected.


Last update:  5/3/2022