American Entrepreneurship Since 1900 – HIUS 713

CG • Section 8WK • 07/01/2018 to 12/31/2199 • Modified 02/01/2024

Course Description

The development of distinctive patterns of American entrepreneurship in relation to American culture and politics up to 1900.

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


This course equips the doctoral student with familiarization of key themes and research methodologies for American economic history.  The student begins the course with foundational analysis of the meaning of entrepreneurship and an examination of key methods of conducting economic history, business history, and their relationship to social and cultural history.   Assignments are designed to hone application of doctoral-level, historical analysis. Readings represent varied perspectives and a reflection of the scholarship in the disciplines of economic and business history.  The student will also read review essays on monumental works in economic history and their long-term significance.

Course Assignment

Academic journal readings and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

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

Research Design and Bibliography Assignment

The research design is a detailed explanation of the topic to be studied, the process by which the student answers a question of historical significance, and the principal sources for research. It must include: 1) research question(s) 2) explanation of historical significance 3) preliminary (non-annotated) bibliography 4) a research plan that explains the location of the preliminary primary sources needed to complete the project (archives, digital collections, businesses, museums, etc.) The student will write a 2-page Research Design in current Turabian format.

Video Discussions (3)

There will be 3 Video Discussions throughout this course. The student is required to provide a video thread in response to the provided topic for each discussion. Each thread is to be 3.5–5 minutes in video format and demonstrate course-related knowledge. In addition to the thread, the student is required to post a 5-6 sentence abstract, reply to 2 other classmates’ threads in writing, and reply to one classmate’s comment in writing. With the exception of the Video Discussion: Research Project Defense which requires 1 reply to a classmate's thread. Each reply must be at least 100 words. Students must also use required scholarship assigned during that week of the course.

Blog Discussions (3)

There will be 3 Blog Discussions throughout this course. The student is required to create a blog post (800–1000 words) in response to the provided topic for each discussion.  The student will post an abstract (5–6 sentences), a source list (3 academic sources) and a blog link. In addition to the thread, the student is required to reply to 2 other classmates’ threads.  Students must also use required scholarship assigned during that week of the course.

Research Paper Assignment

The student will write a 18–25-page research-based paper in current Turabian format that focuses on some aspect of economic or business history in the United States.  While the focus of the course is from 1900 to 2010, students may seek permission to write on a subject occurring between 1865 and 1900. The paper must include at least 20 primary sources and 15 secondary source references.

Oral History Interview Assignment

The student will conduct an interview with an entrepreneur of his or her choice. The student must have at least 15 open-ended questions for his or her interview. The student must use the template format provided in the instructions document. The student will complete an 8–10-page transcription and a 300-word summary of the interview in current Turabian format using the template provided in the course. He or she will also an audio or video record of the interview and submit the recording to verify the written part of the assignment. The video will be uploaded to an unlisted channel in YouTube, or the video or audio will be uploaded to either Canvas or to an external storage site such as DropBox. Links to the recordings must be provided in the transcript.

The entrepreneur of the student's choice should be a person relevant to his or her current research or to the final video blog assignment in Module 8.  The person must be capable of answering questions related to entrepreneurship, economic decision making, and how he or she reads “market signals.” The interview must follow the “best practices” laid out by the Oral History Association with the exception of its archival guidelines.

Research Journals (2)

Students will produce 2 Research Journals. Each journal has its own specific prompt in the course Discussions, related to the work being done by that point in the course. The original post will include brief scholarly abstract of current method, sources, and findings thus far. Students will post critiques and suggestions for improvement (i.e. presentation quality, scholarship, research methodology, other primary sources, analysis, etc.) for 2 students’ posts.