Several years ago, I read Judith Grunert's book The Course Syllabus. The book taught me several things about syllabi that changed the way I look at them and use them in my courses. Too often we have a limited view of the syllabus, seeing it only as a contract, a document we can use to defend ourselves if students question our decisions. Some of us even require students to sign the syllabus, thereby proving they've read and agree to follow its policies. I'd like to share three ideas I took from Grunert's book and have refined over the years.