History is for human self-knowledge . . . the only clue to what man can do is what man has done. The value of history, then, is that it teaches us what man has done and thus what man is. Historical awareness informs various aspects of our lives. We live in a time of rapid change, and we often think more about the future than the past. However, studying history can help us better understand our own lives in the context of the places we live and society in general. In America, specifically, the government is informed by its citizens. If the ideals of society shift, that shift will eventually move throughout the different levels of government, effecting widespread change.
For the projects in this course, you will select a historical event that has impacted American society in some way. You may select an event that was discussed in the course, or you may select your own event, with instructor approval. You may consider using the event you chose to work on in your Perspectives in History class, if that event is something you wish to investigate further through this assessment.
In Project 1, you will develop a plan for an essay on this historical event. The plan will include a brief description of the selected historical event and the resources you will use in your research. In addition, you will identify an audience for your essay and decide how to communicate your information to this audience. In Project 2, you will write an essay analyzing the historical event you selected, examining its impact on society as well as its impact on you personally.
Project 1 addresses the following course outcomes:
1.Select appropriate and relevant primary and secondary sources in investigating foundational historic events
2.Communicate effectively to specific audiences in examining fundamental aspects of human history
3.Apply key approaches to studying history in addressing critical questions related to historical narratives and perspectives
Your writing plan should answer the following prompt: Select a historical event that has impacted American society. Develop a plan for writing your essay, describing the historical event, selecting appropriate resources for your research, and identifying an audience for your essay. The purpose of this writing plan is to provide you with a way to gather your thoughts and begin thinking about how to support your thesis statement. The following critical elements will be assessed in a 1- to 2-page word processing document.
Specifically, the following critical elements must be addressed:
I. Describe the historical event that you selected. Why is this event significant?
II. Describe at least two secondary sources that you could use to research your historical event. Your sources must be relevant to your event and must be of an appropriate academic nature. In your description, consider questions such as: What are the similarities and differences in the content of your sources? What makes these sources appropriate and relevant for investigating your event? What was your thought process when you were searching for sources? How did you make choices?
III. Describe at least two primary sources that you could use to research your historical event. Your sources must be relevant to your event and must be of an appropriate academic nature. In your description, consider questions such as: How do these sources relate to your secondary sources? What do they add to your understanding of the event? What makes them appropriate and relevant for investigating your event?
IV. Based on your review of primary and secondary sources, develop a research question related to the historical event you selected. In other words, what would you like to know more about?
V. Identify an audience that would be interested in your historical event and research question. For example, who would benefit most from hearing your message?
VI. Describe how and why you can tailor your message to your audience, providing specific examples. For example, will your audience understand historical terminology and principles associated with your event, or will you need to explain these? How will you communicate effectively with your audience?
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What major world events have changed history?