American History: Revolution to WWII

Subject HIST20059 (2016)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2016.

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 2 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2016:

Semester 1, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 29-Feb-2016 to 29-May-2016
Assessment Period End 24-Jun-2016
Last date to Self-Enrol 11-Mar-2016
Census Date 31-Mar-2016
Last date to Withdraw without fail 06-May-2016

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 29 hours – 12 x 1.5 hour lectures and 11 x 1 hour tutorials
Total Time Commitment:

170 hours

Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support:


Prof David Goodman



Subject Overview:

In its first 170 years the US grew from a disparate collection of east-coast colonies to a major world power. This subject examines American society through these years, exploring the intertwined themes of slavery, freedom and growth. The first part focuses on the consequences of the existence of slavery in a free society, including fighting of a terrible civil war. The second part examines the dynamics and consequences of growth; topics include the emergence of a market economy, the frontier and the fate of indigenous Americans during the decades of westward expansion, and expansion overseas at the end of the 19th century. The third part examines visions of and debates about the emergence of modern mass society and culture in the first four decades of the twentieth century; topics include Prohibition, the Great Depression and New Deal, the emergence of broadcasting, the segregated South, immigration, and the two world wars.

Learning Outcomes:

Students who successfully complete this subject should be able to:

  • understand some of the major issues in US history 1776-1945 and the significant changes in US society over this period;
  • understand the social, political and cultural context of events in US history 1776-1945;
  • demonstrate an ability to research a topic in US history 1776-1945 using primary sources;
  • have an enhanced understanding of some of the major interpretive arguments made by historians of US history 1776-1945; and
  • demonstrate an ability to communicate historical arguments in writing and orally.
  • A 2500 word research essay due late in the semester (60%)
  • A 1500 word reflective essay due during the examination period (40%)

Hurdle requirement:

  • Students must attend a minimum of 75% of tutorials in order to pass this subject.
  • All pieces of written work must be submitted to pass this subject.

Note: Assessment submitted late without an approved extension will be penalised at 10% per day. After five days late assessment will not be marked. In-class tasks missed without approval will not be marked.

Prescribed Texts:

Subject readings will be available on line.

Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Links to further information:
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Graduate Certificate in Arts - History
Graduate Diploma in Arts - History

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