CSTU220: The African American Experience

11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 02/19/2024

Course Description

An examination of the cultural social, religious, political, literary, and entrepreneurial dynamics of the African American experience from 1860 to the present.

For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.


This course is designed as an interdisciplinary survey of the experiences of African Americans in the social and cultural history of America. The goal of this course is to nurture a recognition of the African American experience in terms of its development and contribution within the broader American culture in order to foster an understanding of biblical diversity and racial reconciliation for Christians engaged in this world.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and lecture presentations

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in the Course Overview.

Discussions are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student will respond to the prompts provided (noted below), and post a thread, containing 200–250 words, to the Discussion. In addition to the thread, the student must submit 2 replies of at least 150 words to 2 classmates’ threads (CLO: A, B, C; FSLO: CGE 1, 2, 3 and 5, CIL 1, CT 5, SSI 3).

This assignment will require the student to identify a musical group/individual and trace their contributions to the African American experience as influencers of culture. This assignment will be submitted as a PowerPoint presentation and must include a title page and 6–8 additional slides. Slides should cover the background of the chosen musician(s), his/her musical genre and the ways in which the chosen musician influenced that genre, the historical context surrounding the musician, and the musician’s overall cultural impact. At least 1 picture or sound clip is required on each slide. Narration of the presentation by the student is also welcome (CLO: A, C; FSLO: CGE 2, CIL 2).

After reviewing the course material for this week, the student will write a response paper of 500–750 words addressing the assigned topic in APA formatting (CLO: A, C; FSLO: CGE 1, 2, CIL 3, CT 5).

The student will answer the following question in an essay of at least 750 words. A strong introduction/thesis and conclusion are required. The student must cite course materials used when making his/her arguments in APA formatting (CLO: D; FSLO: CGE 4, 5, CIL 4, 5, CT 5, CC 3).

Biography of an African American Literary Figure

Utilizing peer feedback from a previous course discussion, the student will prepare an updated biography for their selected literary figure. The purpose of the assignment is to highlight the literary figures who have shaped the African American experience while also focusing on the use of reliable reference sources and encouraging the use of clear explanatory writing. This assignment will be 450-500 words. (CLO: A, C; FSLO: CGE 2).

The student will take a quiz in each Module: Week covering the readings, presentations, and other learning activities specific to the Module: Week. Quizzes consist of multiple-choice and essay questions. The student will have 1 hour to complete each open-book/open-notes test. For each minute over the time limit, the total score will be reduced by 1 point. Because of the time limit, the student must be prepared before starting each test (CLO: A; FSLO: CGE 2).

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