Survey of American History I – HIUS 221

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 07/28/2020

Course Description

A survey of the political, social and economic developments of America from the colonizing experience through the Civil War with emphasis on the development of the American democratic tradition.




As part of Liberty University’s liberal arts education, this course seeks to develop the student’s capacity to think and act creatively and critically within the context of Christian values. Therefore, this course’s purpose goes beyond a mere study of names and dates to developing the student’s historical consciousness, which provides insight into the complex realities of modern living. Understanding history in this grand manner, then, is a vital prerequisite to responsible citizenship.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Identify major figures and events in American history to 1865.
  2. Describe the stages of American national development to 1865.
  3. Explain how political, economic, military, diplomatic, religious, and cultural factors influenced American development to 1865.
  4. Demonstrate college-level competencies in reading comprehension, documentary analysis, research and historical writing.
  5. Evaluate interpretive and historiographical approaches to American history to 1865.
  6. Apply biblical principles to the problems and issues of American history to 1865.

Foundational Skill Learning Outcomes (FSLOs): Communication and information literacy (CIL)

Communication and information literacy

CIL 1: Discover and evaluate information to accomplish a specific purpose.

CIL 2: Communicate information effectively in the English language, orally and/or through writing, for a variety of purposes, using technology when appropriate.

CIL 3: Analyze and assess various forms of information and expression to determine their meaning, employing technology when relevant.

CIL 4: Demonstrate a basic understanding of the role of research and scholarship in order to apply it in various contexts.

CIL 5: Relate communication and information literacy to participation in God’s redemptive work

Critical thinking

CT 2: Structure an argument or position using credible evidence and valid reasoning.

Course Assignment

MindTap readings, lecture presentations, primary sources, and websites

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

MindTap Activities (50)

The student will complete various activities in MindTap (CLO: A, B, C, D, E and F; FSLO: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5).

Primary Source and Presentation Reviews (8)

The student will complete quizzes that cover all presentations, articles, or websites for the module/week in which they are assigned. Each quiz will be open-book/open-notes, contain 10 multiple-choice and/or true/false questions, and have a time limit of 30 minutes. At the discretion of the instructor, 10% may be deducted for every 5 minutes the student exceeds the time limit (CLO: A, B, C, D, E and F; FSLO: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5).

American History Opposing Viewpoints Project

This project will be completed in stages throughout your course, with specific instructions provided for each portion in the appropriate weeks. The stages will be completed as follows:

Week 2: Part I… Summary and topic selection

Week 4: Part II… Sources and Annotated Bibliography

Week 6: Part III… Completed Research Project (3 pages)

Specific instruction guides for this Three Part task are respectively located in the Course Content site Module/Weeks 2, 4, and 6 links. Students will be required to format all aspects of the Part II and Part III portions of the project following Turabian citation style (CLO: A, B, C, D, E and F; FSLO: 1, 2, 3, 4, and CT 2).

Museum or National Park Proposal Assignment

By the close of Module Week 4, the student will post a brief proposal requesting instructor permission to either physically visit a suitable location or a website pertaining to the upcoming Mod. 7 Museum or National Park Assignment. For the sake of planning ahead and before posting a site proposal, students are strongly encouraged to enter the Mod. 7 course site to locate and carefully read the Instruction Guide for the Museum or National Park Assignment. The post should include 3-4 sentences discussing the site proposal as well as the general interest or reason behind the visit. If a student decides to utilize a website, such as a “walking tour” link or a quality YouTube site of a historical museum or location, they will need to include the website address in their proposal post. Within a few days after the proposal entry has been submitted, students will receive a reply from the instructor. Upon review and discretion utilizing the assignment feedback tool, the instructor will approve or disapprove of the proposed location and/or weblink and, if need be, express the reason. If the proposal and/or suggested link is not approved by the instructor, the student must must promptly locate a new site to utilize that will be acceptable to the instructor. It is most important that students receive instructor approval of the location and/or website before pursuing the visit and writing the follow-up paper assignment that will be due by the close of Mod. 7 (CLO: A, B, C, D, E and F; FSLO: 1, 2, 3, 4).

Museum or National Park Visit Assignment

The student will visit one of three options related to U.S. historical events between the 1500s-1865: 1. A local museum. 2. A National Park. 3. A website walking video tour of a Museum or National Park related to U.S. historical events between the 1500s-1865. As a precaution, if the student chooses the website route, it is strongly urged that they contact their class professor well in advance to gain approval for both the location and website. The student will then type a double space 12 font reflection (700-800 words) answering the following questions… How is this historical site relevant to events within the 1500s-1865 and the area now known as the United States? What historical information did you learn from this visit? What historical event or events were covered via this site? What (i.e.) artifacts and/or other displayed items were interesting to you and why? In other words, what stood out about this place and why? How did the site help you appreciate history? (CLO: A, B, C, D, E and F; FSLO: 1, 2, 3, 4).

Reading Comprehension Assessments (2)

The student will complete 2 assessments throughout the course. Each assessment will have a short passage embedded in it. The student will read it and answer 5 multiple-choice questions within a time limit of 20 minutes. Each assessment will be openbook/open-notes. At the discretion of the instructor, 10% may be deducted for every 5 minutes the student exceeds the time limit (CLO: A, B, C, D, E and F; FSLO: 1, 2, 3, 4).