HIS 301 is the History Department’s methods course. It is inherently elastic: its contents and approach will naturally vary based upon the interests and pedagogical style of the faculty member teaching it in any given semester. At the same time, the learning objectives for 301 must remain consistent across sections. These objectives concern the development of three interrelated skill sets:
1). Source analysis: Learning to interpret and critique primary and secondary sources;
2). Writing and argumentation: Becoming proficient in the standards of writing in History;
3). Historical research methods: Establishing competency in library- and/or archival-based research.
The course aims to devote equal attention to all three skill sets. The overall objective is to prepare students for the 401 capstone seminar. This course also fulfills the SBC requirement for ESI (Evaluate and Synthesize Research Information). Please see this link for explanation of the assessment standards for ESI and seek to build these standards into your course as appropriate.
Below are resources to assist faculty teaching HIS 301, though faculty teaching other courses will also benefit from the pedagogical exercises shared here.
401 is the department's capstone seminar. Students will conduct original, library-based research focused on the seminar topic. This course has the following SBC requirements attached to it (see links for further explanation):
EXP+: Students must pursue hands-on library and/or archival research to meet the standard of "applying knowledge and skills beyond the classroom."
SPK: Students must give a 10-15 minute presentation with Q&A in front of their peers (evaluated as part of their final grade) to meet the standard of "speak effectively before an audience."
WRTD: Students must demonstrate competency to "write effectively in one's discipline." The final thesis paper thus must meet the academic standards of writing in History, including correct use of Chicago Manual of Style footnote citation.
The following resources may be of assistance in preparing syllabi and devising pedagogical approaches for meeting these SBC requirements:
This Faculty Mentor Handbook provides an encapsulated overview of the major, opportunities for undergraduates, and a division of advising duties.