History 2710 syllabus

History 2710 syllabus

This course is designed to give a general overview of U.S. history since 1877. Emphasis will be on the meaning of events:

  • why things happened as they did,
  • how people viewed the changing times in which they lived,
  • the consequences of their words and actions, and
  • continuity and change over time.

This course will be reading and writing intensive. Readings include original source materials, scholarly essays, and scholarly Internet sites. Writings will include discussion forums, short response papers, short essay quizzes, and critical analyzes.



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Learning Goals:

A. Historical Knowledge 

  •  Students will demonstrate a knowledge of basic facts, events -- and, especially,  of significant questions and major themes in American history, 1877 - .
  • Students will describe the increase in federal power after the Civil War.
  • Students will explain the persistence of racism in American culture and law.
  • Students will explain issues of governance and the various processes -- political, economic, social, and cultural -- by which systems of governance were developed and changed from  reconstruction to the present.
  • Students will describe the rise of the U.S. as a world power and the issues of governance and protection of rights that rise generates.
  • Students will explain the varieties of capitalism -- corporate, consumer, global -- created in the US and the consequences of these economic systems on culture, demographics, governance.
  • Students will explain socialism as an economic system and major periods of reforming capitalism -- Progressive movement, New Deal, and Great Society.

B. Historical Thinking 

  •  Students will gain a historical perspective by which to understand the present. Students will gain an understanding of how historians think and interpret the past through the lens of the present.
  • Students will consider a wide variety of historical sources and learn about how historians go about "recovering the past." 

 C. Historical Skills

  •  Students will hone their skills in reading, thinking, writing. Students will learn how to learn, how to reflect on their own learning.
  • Students will be able to weigh conflicting claims by employing reason and rules of evidence to establish the reliability of any claim or statement.

 Activities in support of learning goals:

 There are 15 Modules

  • Discussion Forums. For each module of study, there are discussion forums. You are usually required to make three posts per forum. Two of these should be substantive responses to our readings (topics are posted, including work with primary documents), and one should be a response to the post of a classmate.Students should complete 15 forums:
    • Post your scores on the relevant AP quizLinks to an external site. you took. (Never fear -- these quizzes are just to show you what you already know before we begin our study of a particular topic!)
    • on the topic posted
    • on your work with sources
    • and a thoughtful response to the post of a classmate

Posts should total a minimum of  600 words per week. Your grade for the discussion forums will be based on the timeliness of your responses, their length, their quality and substance, your use of assigned readings. (20 points each forum) A record of the number of postings you have viewed is available to me.

  • 3 exams. These will be randomized from a list of posted topics. (50 points each) These quizzes must be taken on Chi Tester at WSU testing center or under proctored conditions.
  • Responses. These are short (1-2 pages) papers based on a variety of topics. Choose 10. Responses should be completed by  the Monday after the unit in which they are described. Points will be taken off late projects. (10 points each)
  • Analyses of Scholarship. You will critique 3 pieces of scholarship in formal papers (2-3 pages), typed, free of gross spelling and grammatical errors. You may analyze the scholarship of 3 different topics in U.S. history since 1877, or you may analyze a single topic through 3 different scholars. An analysis paper is due at the end of each of the 4 week intervals of the semester .(15 points each.)
  • Final reflection. Reflect on your learning in this class (5 points)

Grades: Grades will a weighted percentage of points possible-not "on the curve." 

  • 3 exams = 150 points
  • 15 discussion forums =  300 points
  • 10 response papers = 100 points
  • 3 Analyses = 45 points
  • Final Reflection = 5 points

70% = C


About accommodations:

  • Any student requiring accommodations or services dues to a disability must contact Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) in room 181 of the Student Service Center. SSD can also arrange to provide course materials (including this syllabus) in alternative formats if necessary.
  • Weber State University recognizes that there are times when course content may differ from a student's core beliefs. Faculty, however, have a responsibility to teach content that is related to the discipline and that has a reasonable relationship to pedagogical goals. If you, as a student, believe that the content of the course conflicts with your ability to pursue the topic, you may request a resolution from the instructor. (See PPM 6-22.)

About Plagiarism:

Plagiarism on any of your work will result in failure of the project in question. Plagiarism may also be grouns for failing the course. If at any time, you are unsure about what might constitute plagiarism, just ask. I'll be glad to help you figure out where and when you need to document sources or credit others with ideas you wish to borrow WSU Student Code
Links to an external site.

Emergency Closure

If for any reason the university is forced to close for an extended period of time, we will conduct our class via Canvas.  Look for announcements on Weber e-mail. Code Purple is a good way to be alerted to campus closures, and you are encouraged to sign up for it. Links to an external site.