American History: 1877 to the Present

Course Details
& Course Number
HIST 152, section 201
Class Number
Course Type
Undergraduate (College of General Studies)
Meets Requirements
Joe Austin
Course Dates
June 27-July 23, 2022 (4 weeks)

This is a beginning-level survey course on the history of the United States between the end of the Civil War (1865) and the near-present (2016+), taught fully online. There are no face-to-face meetings required. The course is designed for maximum schedule flexibility for students and has only 1 due date. Students work at their own pace to complete and submit assignments. No history course is able to take up all historical events that could be covered within its allotted geographical area and time period.  A 100-level “survey” (like this course) is the type of history course that is most broad in its scope, covering the longer time periods, and is the least “detailed” in its descriptions. Some of the course goals are general: Writing descriptively, analytically, and persuasively (using evidence to make an argument), with clarity, conciseness, and cogency; and making arguments, based on events, details, and trends, about the meanings of US history. Three of its other goals are addressed as questions: 1. In what ways does the past 150 years of US history have significant meaning for contemporary life? 2. What are the most important events in U.S. history during this 150-year period? 3. The meaning of history is always up for debate. Why, and why are these debates important? The course is built around changing and conflicting notions of “freedom” during the past 150 years and uses Eric Foner’s textbook Give Me Liberty! (4rd, 5th, or 6th Seagull edition, Volume 2). Major assignments include 4 Objective Exams (each covers 4-5 textbook chapters and can be re-taken twice for a higher score, 25%), 1 Essay Exam (no retakes, 40%), and 30 written postings to the discussion boards (30%).

Course Syllabus (.pdf)