HIST313: War and American Society

Course Syllabus for "HIST313: War and American Society"

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This course will focus on the wars and military conflicts that have shaped the social, political, and economic development of the United States from the colonial era through the present.  You will learn how these conflicts have led to significant changes in America social and political life during this 300-year period.  The course will be structured chronologically.  Each unit will include representative primary-source documents that illustrate important overarching themes, such as how colonial conflicts in the 18th century shaped the political organization of the United States, how regional conflicts in the 19th century culminated in the Civil War, how America cemented its status as a major world power through participation in the First and Second World Wars, how Cold War conflicts destabilized American social and political life, and how modern conflicts continue to redefine American social and political values and ideals.  By the end of the course, you will understand how three centuries of warfare have reshaped America's relationship with the world and altered American society in unexpected ways.

Learning Outcomes

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

  • Describe the impact of military conflicts on American society from the 18th century through the present.
  • Identify how the United States became involved in the First and Second World Wars and assess how these conflicts impacted American society.
  • Identify current military challenges faced by the United States and assess how these challenges will affect American society.
  • Analyze and interpret primary source documents from the 18th century through the present, using historical research methods.

Course Requirements

In order to take this course you must:
√    Have access to a computer.
√    Have continuous broadband Internet access.
√    Have the ability/permission to install plug-ins or software (e.g., Adobe Reader or Flash).
√    Have the ability to download and save files and documents to a computer.
√    Have the ability to open Microsoft files and documents (.doc, .ppt, .xls, etc.).
√    Be competent in the English language.
Table of Contents: You can find the course's units at the links below.