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History 110
Fall  2013
Prof. John Putman



History Links

American Civilization Since the Civil War




                History 110 is the second semester of a two-semester introduction to United States history. (You do not need to have taken the first half of US history to take History 110.) This course surveys the history of the United States from Reconstruction to the present.  The emphasis will be on the rise of modern industrial America, the varied responses to industrialization, the emergence of the US as a world power, the impact of the Cold War, the turbulent 60s,and the struggle over resources and power in twentieth-century America. 



button Eric Foner, Give Me Liberty, Vol. 2, Seagull edition
button Edward Bellamy, Looking Backward
button Virgnia Scharff, Taking the Wheel

Bradford Wright, Comic Book Nation

button A few readings may also be available online and/or on Blackboard.



        Grades will be based on two midterms, a final exam, and a 6 page research paper.  The exams are essay in form.  Participation may include a few in-class quizzes and document analyses. You may be asked to discuss some documents in class that will be available from my web site.       

       Midterm 1:                                15%                                                       

Midterm 2:                                20%
Paper:                                       25%

Final:                                        30%

       Participation.:                          10%


 Please be aware that the major themes and ideas that comprise my exams are generally drawn from my lectures so attendance is critical if you wish to do well in this course. Attendance will also affect class participation grade because if you are not in class, you cannot participate. Readings, both from the text and the other assigned books, are not extra or optional assignments. The readings complement, but do not replace, my lectures and are there to help you better understand major themes and issues raised in class.  One key to success in this course is to keep up with the reading assignments.

Class Etiquette: Please arrive on time and do not leave before the end of class unless you inform me prior to class.  Also, please be sure cell phones are off or on silent. This also means no text messaging in class. Finally, laptops can only be used to take notes.

Student Learning Goals:

1. Students will understand and analyze the major themes and issues in the modern United States history and the historical forces that have shaped them.

2. Students will investigate the racial and cultural diversity of the United States and the struggles over power and freedom and how these have shaped the nation.

3. Students will explore and critically analyze both primary and secondary source material.

4. Students will probe the nature of historical interpretation.

5. Students will undertake historical research using primary source material and improve writing skills.


SDSU Academic Honesty Policy:

Institutions of higher education are founded to impart knowledge, seek truth, and encourage one’s development for the good of society. University students shall thus be intellectually and morally obliged to pursue their course of studies with honesty and integrity. Therefore, in preparing and submitting materials for academic courses and in taking examinations, a student shall not yield to cheating or plagiarism, which not only violate academic standards but also make the offender liable to penalties explicit in Title 5.  Cheating shall be defined as the act of obtaining or attempting to obtain credit for academic work by the use of dishonest, deceptive, or fraudulent means. Examples of cheating include, but are not limited to (a) copying, in part or in whole, from another’s test or other examination; (b) discussing answers or ideas relating to the answers on a test or other examination without the permission of the instructor; (c) obtaining copies of a test, an examination, or other course material without the permission of the instructor; (d) using notes, cheat sheets, or other devices considered inappropriate under the prescribed testing condition; (e) collaborating with another or others in work to be presented without the permission of the instructor; (f) falsifying records, laboratory work, or other course data; (g) submitting work previously presented in another course, if contrary to the rules of the course; (h) altering or interfering with the grading procedures; (i) plagiarizing, as defined; and (j) knowingly and intentionally assisting another student in any of the above. Plagiarism shall be defined as the act of incorporating ideas, words, or specific substance of another, whether purchased, borrowed, or otherwise obtained, and submitting same to the University as one’s own work to fulfill academic requirements without giving credit to the appropriate source. Plagiarism shall include but not be limited to (a) submitting work, either in part or in whole, completed by another; (b) omitting footnotes for ideas, statements, facts, or conclusions that belong to another; (c) omitting quotation marks when quoting directly from another, whether it be a paragraph, sentence, or part thereof; (d) close and lengthy paraphrasing of the writings of another; (e) submitting another person’s artistic works, such as musical compositions, photographs, paintings, drawings, or sculptures; and (f) submitting as one’s own work papers purchased from research companies. Those guilty of committing plagiarism or cheating will receive an F for both the assignment and the entire course.

 “Students agree that by taking this course all required papers may be subject to submission for textual similarity review to Blackboard’s for the detection of plagiarism. All submitted papers will be included as source documents in the reference database solely for the purpose of detecting plagiarism of such papers. You may submit your papers in such a way that no identifying information about you is included. Another option is that you may request, in writing, that your papers not be submitted to However, if you choose this option you will be required to provide documentation to substantiate that the papers are your original work and do not include any plagiarized material.”