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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : History

Undergraduate Course: History of the United States (HIST08045)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 8 (Year 2 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course offers an introduction to the history of the United States, spanning from the revolutionary era of the eighteenth century through to the twenty-first century. From the creation of the American republic, the course explores the nation's development and challenges it faced over time.
Course description In exploring key themes in the history of the United States, the course examines: how Americans created a new nation that achieved continental expansion, and how sectional crisis - leading to Civil War - emerged; how norms of race, gender, and class attained entrenchment, and how Americans over time undertook fights for racial, social, and gender equality; how the U.S. government interacted with the wider world, and how - and with what consequences - the United States emerged as a world power; and how the U.S. economy underwent transformation, and how Americans responded to the challenges posed by economic crisis.

The course promotes the development of students' skills (both written and non-written) in historical research and analysis, encompassing critical engagement with both historiographical debates and primary sources.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: The Historian's Toolkit (HIST08032)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements A pass in any first level course achieved no later than August of the previous academic year.

Students on the Economic History (MA Hons) degree do not require the compulsory pre-requisite 'The Historians' Toolkit'
PLEASE NOTE: The pre-requisite is still compulsory for ALL OTHER DEGREE PROGRAMMES
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  185
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 33, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 10, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 153 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Coursework:
1,000 word Historiographical Essay (30%)
2,500 word Essay (70%)
Feedback Students will receive feedback on their coursework, and will have the opportunity to discuss that feedback further with their tutor during published office hours or by appointment.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. demonstrate command of a substantial body of historical knowledge
  2. develop and sustain historical arguments in a variety of literary forms, formulating appropriate questions and utilizing evidence
  3. demonstrate an understanding of the varieties of approaches to understanding, constructing, and interpreting the past; and, where relevant, knowledge of concepts and theories derived from the humanities and social sciences
  4. address historical problems in depth, involving the use of contemporary sources and advanced secondary literature
  5. demonstrate clarity, fluency, and coherence in written and oral expression
Reading List
The American Yawp, open resource (Stanford, CA, 2020):

Jane Dailey, Building the American Republic, vol. 2: A Narrative History from 1877 (Chicago, 2018):

Eric Foner, Give Me Liberty! An American History (New York, 2005-2020)

Harry L. Watson, Building the American Republic, vol. I: A Narrative History to 1877 (Chicago, 2018):
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr David Silkenat
Tel: (0131 6)50 4614
Course secretaryMiss Lauren Smith
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