United States History I Syllabus for 2021-2022
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Instructor Information


Office Location

Dutton Hall 202G

Office Hours

By Appointment

Course Information

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HIST-1301-020 United States History I


Course Description

A survey of the social, political, economic, cultural and intellectual history of the United States from the pre-Columbian era to the Civil War/Reconstruction period. United States History I includes the study of pre-Columbian, colonial, revolutionary, early national, slavery and sectionalism, and the Civil War/Reconstruction eras. Themes that may be addressed in United States History I include: American settlement and diversity, American culture, religion, civil and human rights, technological change, economic change, immigration and migration, and creation of the federal government.

Student ResourcesStudent Resources Website

Department Expectations

Occupational License Disclaimer

Notice to Students enrolled in an educational program for preparation of issuance of certain occupational licenses:

Students enrolled in an educational program in preparation for obtaining certain occupational licenses are potentially ineligible for such license if the student has been convicted of an offense. For further information, please contact:

Melodie Graves
Justice Involved Advocate
Student Service Center 117
Make appointment at https://melodiegraves.youcanbook.me

You can also contact the Legal Clinic, or the faculty member in charge of the educational program that you seek to enroll in. The further information you will receive will include notification to you of your right to request a criminal history evaluation letter from the licensing authority in order to clarify your particular situation.


(3 sem hrs; 3 lec)

Class Type

Tech Supported

Syllabus Information


Shi. America: The Essential Learning Edition, VOL I, Second Edition. W.W. Norton & Company, 2018. ISBN: 978-0-393-64300-8 

This text is required. If you purchase a used book, you will need to purchase access to online tools that accompany this book (an in-app purchase).

This text is required.


Access to a reliable desktop or laptop computer, reliable internet connection, and online textbook are required. Also bring a notebook, pencil, and pen to class. 

Student Performance

This is a tech-supported 6-week course. It is fast-paced! To be successful, you will need to be familiar with the syllabus and course schedule and follow these carefully. You must have full access to a working computer (desktop or laptop) and to the internet. You will not be able to complete coursework using your smartphone, since the Blackboard functions you will be using are not reliable through smartphone or tablet technology.

Attend class regularly and communicate with me if you must miss a class or if you need to leave class early.

Students Rights and Responsibilities

Student Rights and Responsibilities

Log in using the AC Connect Portal

In order to receive your AC Connect Email, you must log in through AC Connect at https://acconnect.actx.edu .

If you are an active staff or faculty member according to Human Resources, use "Exchange". All other students, use "AC Connect (Google) Email".

Expected Student Behavior

Course and Contact Information:

Class Time:        Tuesday and Thursday, 8:30 AM- 11:15 AM in our virtual classroom on Zoom

Office Hours:     Tuesday: 11:15 AM-12:00 PM, or by appointment                        

Office:               Dutton Hall Social Sciences Adjunct Faculty Office


Email:                Utilize the course email function in Blackboard only. Follow the link named  Email Instructor or Classmates.

Course Overview

            This is a 6-week survey course in American History covering the Pre-Columbian world to 1877. As part of learning about these topics, you will also learn how to think critically about historical events, evaluate primary and secondary sources, compare viewpoints, and share your analyses of these events and materials through written and verbal forms.

            You must be prepared to complete coursework online, work with others in a team setting in class, and be a self-starter to be successful. You must be committed to completing readings and other assignments in a timely manner, and come to class prepared to participate in discussing historical events as outlined in the course schedule.

            All students must attend class in order to achieve a passing grade. If you are having challenges with class attendance, please contact me immediately.

            As a student in this class, you can expect me to be prepared to teach you each day and answer your questions about the topics we discuss. I will respond to emails and other communications within 24 hours on weekdays, and will work to help you achieve the course objectives in this class.

Course Objectives

            Throughout this course, students will:

  1. Identify, define, and explain perspectives, ideas, ethical challenges, cultures, classes, individuals, and events in American history.
  2. Determine and explain motivations of peoples you will study. Evaluate how their values and beliefs influenced their actions.
  3. Compare perspectives of peoples living in the Americas throughout the time period covered.
  4. Assess how events in American history shaped and were shaped by its citizens.
  5. Acquire and practice skills in critical thinking through reading, source analysis, listening, discussion, collaboration, and writing.

Classroom Conduct

            Come to class prepared to learn and contribute each day. Complete assigned material each week. Bring a notebook, pencil or pen, and your book (laptops are acceptable; your ebook is accessible using other devices as well).

Acceptable student behavior is explained in the Student Handbook, and is listed under the heading: “Student Conduct & Responsibilities” beginning on page 16 and continuing through page 17. Consequences for violations of the Code immediately follow. There is also an explanation of expectations of student behavior in this section. It is your responsibility to know and abide by this code of conduct while a student at Amarillo College.

You are expected to show respect for every individual in the classroom. Harassing or disrespecting others on any basis is inappropriate. Be mindful and respectful of one another, and use this opportunity to learn more about other's viewpoints.

Cell phone use including texting during class is rude and will harm your participation grade. If you have a situation that requires you to take a call during class, let me know before class starts. When you receive such a call, quietly step out of class to take it.

There will be class activities during which you will be free to use your own technology such as smart phones. Otherwise, turn your cell phones off before class begins. You must also remove headphones as soon as you enter the classroom.

College expectations, personal and work pressures, and unexpected events in life can be challenging. There is help available for anyone dealing with depression, grief, loss, anxiety, addiction, etc. Amarillo College Social Services can help. Their contact number is 806-371-5439. Services are professional and confidential. Follow this link to view these services: https://www.actx.edu/socialservices/ .

Grading Criteria

Course Work

            I will list all assignments in the syllabus, on the course schedule, or announce them in class. All assignments are available in Blackboard. Review the syllabus often to check due dates and course expectations. You are responsible for completing these in a timely manner. If you have questions about the requirements or are unsure about how to complete the work, consult the syllabus and the assignment instructions first. If you are still in need of help, contact me at least two days before the assignment is due and I will be glad to assist you.

You will use Blackboard for the following functions:

  • Communicating with your instructor and classmates
  • Taking readings quizzes
  • Accessing course content including your E-book,  InQuizitive, History Skills Tutorials assignments, study aids, and other materials
  • Completing other coursework as assigned
  • Viewing grades

Readings & History Skills Tutorials

            Weekly readings will include material from Shi. America: The Essential Learning Edition, VOL I, Second Edition. W.W. Norton & Company, 2018. ISBN: 978-0-393-64300-8. You will complete two to three chapters of reading each week; be prepared to comment on what you have read. For each chapter, you will also complete InQuizitive assignments. The average score from reading and chapter assignments will count for a total of 200 points. History Skills Tutorials will help you evaluate historical documents; these are important skills you will use to complete your Common Assessment. The average score fom these tutorials will count for 100 points. The total points for this category is 300 points.

If you have any difficulty acquiring the book or completing your readings, let me know immediately.


Note: If you are unable to purchase your book this week, as an invited member of this course you can select temporary access until you are able to purchase your book (up to 14 days). This means you can begin your readings and assignments right away, even if you have not purchased your book.

Term Paper

            You will have one formal writing assignment focused on primary source analysis and comparison. There are three distinct steps in this assignment. First, you will choose all documents from on document set to examine and compare; I will provide these to you in the assignment. You will write an essay based on the text, your analysis, and additional research of the topic. Second, take your essay to the Writer’s Corner for assistance in proofreading and editing your essay, then you will make corrections to your work. You will upload your rough draft to the drop box provided. Third, turn in your complete project which includes your finished essay and your Sources Cited page on Tuesday, June 21st, in the online drop box provided. You have the option of turning in your paper early so that I can review it with you and make suggestions on how you can improve. This assignment is worth 50 points for your rough draft and 100 points for your final project. The total for this category is 150 points.

 Exams and Quizzes

            You will have a Midterm and a Final Exam in this class. They will include multiple choice, essay, and short answer questions. I will provide you with a review sheet before the exam. Questions are from the book, assigned source materials, quizzes, class activities, and lectures. Each exam is worth 100 points.

            Weekly readings quizzes are included in your readings assignment. Scores from these are attached to your total readings score.


Participation and Team Activities

            Attendance is directly connected to your success; each day that you are present, participating, and completing in-class projects, you will earn participation points. Students will be divided into teams for discussions, activities, and study. Full participation in these groups is necessary for you to be successful in the class, and points will be assessed for each activity. Attendance and completion of in-class projects is worth 250 points.

Class Meeting times:

Tue 8:30 AM-11:15 AM

Thu 8:30 AM-11:15 AM


Extra Credit

            Students may complete extra credit throughout the semester. You may earn up to 25 points. Extra credit opportunities will be announced in class or in Blackboard.



Attendance and In-Class Activities: 250

Readings and InQuizitive: 200 points

History Skills Tutorials: 100

Term Paper: 150 points

Exams: 200

Grade Breakdown:

900 total points available

810-900 points= A

720-809 points-= B

630-719 points= C

540-629 points= D

0-539 points= F


Attendance is vital to your success in this class and is required. There are times when absences cannot be avoided due to a variety of reasons including illness, emergencies, or travel for educational purposes. If this occurs, contact me immediately.  If you must miss class due to college activities or business, have your coach, director, or sponsor provide notice of the absence in advance of the activity. Such absences are excused if you notify me in advance.   


Course Schedule




Due Date

Lecture Topics

Course Objectives

Week 1


Reading/America, Chapters 1 & 2

InQuizitive assignments for chapters 1 & 2


In-Class Activity:

The Colonial Experience

5/31/2022 11:59 PM

Course Introduction

Pre-Columbian World, Collision of Cultures

England and Its American Colonies

1, 2, 3

Week 2

Reading/America, Chapters 3 & 4


InQuizitive assignments for chapters 3 & 4

History Skills Tutorials (3)

Term Paper Opens

6/07/2022 11:59 PM

Document Analysis in History: Concepts & Skills

Colonial Life, Culture, & Development

The Revolutionary Period: From Colonies to States

4, 5

Week 3

Reading/America, Chapters 5, 6 & 7


InQuizitive assignments for chapters 5, 6 & 7

In-Class Activity: Revolution and the Cost of Freedom

Midterm Exam: Online

6/14/2022 11:59 PM

The American Revolution

Creating a "More Perfect Union"

The Early Republic

1, 2, 3, 4

Week 4

Reading/America, Chapters 8, 9 & 10

InQuizitive assignments chapters 8, 9 & 10

Term Paper: Writer’s Corner Review Due Tuesday, June 14th (email confirmation when complete)

6/21/2022 11:59 PM

The Market Economy

Nationalism and Sectionalism

The Age of Jackson

1, 2

Week 5

Reading/America, chapter 11, 12, & 13

InQuizitive assignments chapters 12 & 13

Term Paper: Due online on Tuesday, June 21st

In-Class Activity: Going West

6/28/2022 11:59 PM

Revival and Reform

Western  Expansion, Southern Secession

Civil War


Week 6

Reading/America, chapters 14 & 15



InQuizitive assignment, chapters 14 & 15

Final Exam: Online June  28-30


6/30/2022 11:59 PM

Civil War



Instructor’s note on course schedule and syllabus: I may adjust the lecture/activity schedule during the term to accommodate reasonable variance in class discussions. Due dates for readings, quizzes, exams, and other course work will remain the same.

Additional Information

If you feel you are not doing as well as you had expected in this course, please come speak to me about your concerns. I will be glad to help you overcome the difficulties you are having.

Syllabus Created on:

05/23/22 2:05 AM

Last Edited on:

05/23/22 3:42 AM