COURSE NAME:        History of the United States

DESCRIPTION OF COURSE:  A general survey of the history of the United States from 1492 to 1877.

Textbook:  Berkin, Miller, Cherny, and Gormly, Making America:  A History of the United States Volume I, 4th edition.

Instructor:  Dr. Kahne R. Parsons
Telephone:  903-510-2454
E-mail:  kpar@tjc.edu
Home Page (Alternative to WebCT):  http://www.paradoxmind.com/index2.html
Office:  J-134

PURPOSE AND GOALS OF COURSE:  History 1301 is a three-hour general survey of the United States from 1492 to 1877.  This course satisfies three of the six hours in American History required by the state of Texas.  In fulfilling requirements for this course, the student will take a minimum of four major exams, each containing a significant writing component.  The instructor may add other quizzes, reports, or extra credit items.  A comprehensive final examination will be given during examinations week at the end of the semester.
By the end of the course, the student should be able to complete satisfactorily the learning objectives listed below.  The course is designed to familiarize the student with the broad development of the United States, its people, culture, society, economic and political systems.  Students will be encouraged to organize and analyze historical data in order to understand and appreciate the complexities of our society, as well as the sources of our national unity.
ASSIGNMENTS/TESTS The student will be responsible for monitoring the WebCT site calendar and other assessment sites, such as Quizzes, Assignments, etc.  It is the student's responsibility to keep up with ALL deadlines.  Deadlines for exams are posted on the Calendar; deadlines/due dates for quizzes and written Assignments are posted on those pages, respectively.

All assignments and tests must be completed by the due date.  Due dates are the LAST DAY something may be submitted for full credit.  A student any--indeed, is encouraged--to complete tasks before the deadline/due date. 

Most weekly assignments will be completed using e-mail or the Internet.  However, students must take written exams in the TJC testing center.  Non-local students must make arrangements to take their exam in a proctored setting --i.e., at a local high school, library, or other learning center.  (Be aware that TJC charges a $20 per exam fee for exams taking anywhere other than the TJC Testing Center  Sorry, but that's their rule.) 

The instructor may drop a student's lowest test grade at the end of the semester and replace it with the final exam grade if the latter is higher.  However, a student may not simply opt to just skip an exam and expect to replace it with the final exam.  You must have a valid, approved reason to the instructor before the end of the exam period.  If you are required* to take the final, you may NOT skip or drop the final exam for any reason.  This is a college rule, not just one for this course.

(*if students score 80 or higher on all five exams they do not have to take the comprehensive final.)

COMMUNICATION.   Although the instructor is figuratively available to the student 24/7, there are some general parameters for communication in a web-based course.  On weekdays, you should reasonably expect a turnaround time (i.e., an answer) within 24 hours.  (Often, the reply will arrive sooner than that, depending on the "traffic load.")  On weekends--especially between Friday and Sunday evenings--response time will be less prompt, so the student should plan accordingly.

POSTING MESSAGES.  When posting a message via e-mail, always place the reference in the subject heading area.  For example, if you have a question regarding Activity 2.4, you would write Activity 2.4 under Subject Heading.  What messages should be posted to e-mail and which to the Discussion list?  Anything that concerns private information, such as your grade, or a particular situation you need to discuss (such as how you're doing in the class), should be e-mailed to the Instructor. 

ALTERNATE COMMUNICATION.  In the event that your computer crashes, you have recourse to other means of communication.  You can call the instructor's office on weekdays at the number listed at the top of this syllabus.  You can also fax assignments to the Department.  However, the best method of communication remains e-mail.  Phone calls and faxes will be checked less frequently than e-mail.
GRADING.   Exam grades generally count for 70% of your final class grade; essays, quizzes, and other assignments count 30%.  You may check your grade on WebCT's "My Grades."
COURSE WITHDRAWAL POLICY.  It is the student’s responsibility to drop a class.  All drops must be processed by an Academic Advisor appropriate to the student’s major.

PLAGIARISM.  Please read carefully the section in your online orientation regarding plagiarism.
Upon completion of the course, the student will be able to do the following with 70 percent competency:

HIST 1301

1.  Relate the background and discovery of the New World that led to the English colonization of America.

2.  Illustrate the causes and effects of the American Revolution.

3.  Compare and contrast the government of the United States under the Articles of Confederation and the current constitution.

4.  Relate the impact of European Wars on the new nation leading to the War of 1812; and show the importance of nationalism, the phenomenon of Jacksonian democracy, and the movement West.

5.  Analyze the social, economic and political forces (with particular emphasis upon the institution of slavery) that ended in civil war.

6.  Explain the issues and events of Reconstruction and appraise their impact upon the next one hundred years of United States history.

HIST 1301

1.    European antecedence of colonization.

2.    The Colonial Period.

3.    The American Revolutionary Era.

4.    The Federalist and Jeffersonian Eras.

5.    The War of 1812.

6.    America 1815-1840.

7.    Manifest Destiny and Expansionism.

8.    Leading up to the Civil War.

9.    The Civil War and Reconstruction.

©  Kahne Parsons, 2007-08