- Course Number:
- HST 100
- Course Title:
- Introduction to History
- Credit Hours:
- Lecture Hours:
- Lecture/Lab Hours:
- Lab Hours:
- Special Fee:
Course DescriptionProvides a general introduction to the nature and methods of history. Develops awareness of the importance of historical literacy and thinking. Develops intellectual and written communication skills applicable to the study of history and other academic disciplines and a wide variety of professional pursuits. Covers various periods, areas and fields of history through the use of historical case studies. Prerequisites: Placement into WR 115. Audit available.
Intended Outcomes for the course
Upon successful completion, the student should be able to:
- Articulate and interpret an understanding of the nature and methods of history, the various sources historians use to reconstruct the past, and the importance of historical context when evaluating evidence and historical interpretation.
- Identify the influence of culturally based practices, values, and beliefs to analyze how historically-defined meanings of difference affect human behavior.
- Identify and investigate historical theses, evaluate information and its sources, and use appropriate reasoning to construct evidence-based arguments on historical issues.
- Construct a well-organized historical argument using effective, appropriate, and accurate language.
Outcome Assessment Strategies
Assessment strategies might include the following:
- Essays (in-class, take-home, of varying lengths) and writing capsules
- Student presentations
- Oral history project
- Maps, graphs and spatial data
- Class and small group discussions
- Development of citations, works cited and bibliographies
- Service learning projects
Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)
Competencies and Skills
Identify the uses of history:
- Identify how history provides a sense of identity.
- Explain how history helps us to better understand the human condition.
- Recognize the importance of history as a background for other disciplines.
Assess the nature of history and how history is reconstructed:
- Define what history is and how this differs from a historical account.
- Understand that historical accounts are reconstructions of the past.
- Recognize the subjectivity involved in historical accounts and the gaps in the historical record.
Analyze and evaluate historical sources:
- Connect evidence to its relevant historical context.
- Identify and evaluate written, artistic, and other evidence.
- Assess motivation and purpose of evidence.
Evaluate different interpretations of past events and construct your own:
- Recognize and understand the basis for various interpretations and views of historical issues.
- Identify a historians thesis and supporting evidence.
- Develop your own thesis and historical interpretation based upon evidence.
- Select what is important from a large body of material.
Connect present-day events to the past:
- Connect past and present information through critical analysis and evaluation.
Themes, Concepts, Issues
This course may cover aspects of:
- Change and continuity over time
- Multiple causality
Reference materials: library and on-line resources
Historical evidence (primary and secondary sources, films, posters, art etc.)
Nature of History
History as reconstruction
History as interpretation
- Historiography: the history of History
History and other disciplines
Historical methods and skills will be applied to various aspects of world history and will depend upon the selection of materials by the instructor. Content areas may include, but are not limited to the following areas:
- History of the United States
- Ancient, Medieval or Modern European History
- History of the Middle East, India or East Asia
Conal Furay and Michael J. Salevouris, The Methods and Skills of History: A Practical Guide (Harlan Davidson).