APHIST Syllabus

                                     Part I

1) Course Identification
    - Advanced Placement United States History 
       - A 2 semester course (full year)
     - APHIST meets in Room 1005, in Pod 1000
       - 1st Semester APHIST meets during Periods 2 and 3
     - APHIST Website

2) Instructor: Dan Jensen
    - E-mail: dan.jensen@district145.org
     - My Weebly WHS Website (featuring my U.S. History Blog)

3) Course Description
    - APHIST is the highest-level elective at WHS in the Social Studies Department
       (as is Macroeconomics, taught by Mr. Goldsmith)
       - This course is a de facto college-level class, with the option to pursue
          EIGHT HOURS of Dual Credit through Nebraska Wesleyan University
    - Detailed Course Description
     - Semester 1: The Colonial Era thru Reconstruction
         Unit I: The Colonial Era
         Unit II: The Revolutionary War Era
         Unit III: The Forging of a Nation
         Unit IV: Westward Expansion
         Unit V: The Civil War Era
         Unit VI: Reconstruction
     - Semester 2: The Progressive Era thru "The Rise of Conservatism"
         Unit VII: The Progressive Era
         Unit VIII: World War I & Post-WW I
         Unit IX: The Great Depression & World War II
         Unit X: Post-WW II

4) Course Policies
    - APHIST Grading Policy
        - Featured in the above link: how a student's grade is determined . . .
     - Assignment Deadlines:
        - If a student misses a deadline, the student receives a temporary zero
          - The temporary zero remains until the assignment is completed
        - If a student decides that deadlines aren't really for them, but for others, 
          then such reminders as visits w/ me before or after school, or even
          the extremes of "After Hours" on Wednesday, or "Saturday School" will be
          in play . . .as well as an email home to update the student's household
        - My advice: If you can't meet the deadline, it's far better if you let me know
          why, and we can take it from there . . . 
     - "Exits":
        - Each student has 3 "Exits" from class each semester (e.g. restroom, 
          locker, drink, etc.)
        - If a student is tardy to class (w/out a pass), that tardy counts as
        - Students that have exercised poor judgment over time, and 
           exceed their 3 "exits", are subject to administrative referral
        - Tardies:
           - 1st Tardy: Warning
           - 2nd Tardy: 15 minute detention w/ teacher to be served within 3 days
           - 3rd Tardy & Beyond: Office referral
     - In essence there is one over-arching policy for this class: Avoid
        interfering with someone else's education . . .

                               Part II

5) Course Materials
    - Since this is a college-level course taught to high school kids, my expectations
       are very high; every student should have their notebook, pen/pencil, and
       all the handouts I've given over the course of the year in their possession
       when in class
     - Textbooks: If enough textbooks are in supply, every student will receive a
        textbook.  If there is a shortage, then textbooks will only be issued to the
        students taking the course for Dual Credit through NWU (Other reading
        material will be provided for students that do not pursue Dual Credit)

6) Learning Strategies
    - Processing information in class, whether from lecture, reading, video,
        photograph, political cartoon, etc.
     - Effective note-taking, and review / analysis of the notes when prompted
     - Organizing and writing a college-level essay
     - Analyzing Primary Source Documents like a historian
     - Ask (verbal or written) high-level questions from class discussion or reading
     - Answer the most crucial question in the history-of-history: WHY . . .
       - Of course, in order to answer the "Why", students also need the
         necessary background of "Who", "How", and "What", among other things

7) Requirements
    According to our School Board Policy, the WHS grading brackets are . . . 
              - "A" (94-100) / "B" (86-93) / "C" (78-85) / "D" (70-77) / "F" (Below 70)
         - In conjunction with NWU, the Dual Credit grading brackets are . . . 
              - "A" (90 - 100); "B" (80 - 89); "C" (70 - 79); "D" (60 - 69); "F" (59 & below)
    - There are 3 Flagship Skills in this course; it is expected that each student
       becomes proficient in:
          a) Organizing and Writing a College-Level Essay
              - First-things-first: Organizing a college-level INTRODUCTION
              - Once a college-level intro is ready-to-go, the essay will be mostly
                a pro forma exercise in providing evidence to support a conclusion
          b) Analyzing Primary Source Documents, in terms of:
               - "Sourcing" (Analyzing the source information of a document)
               - "Header" (What is the main focus of the document?)
               - "Annotating" (Finding relevant information in the document itself)
               - "Guiding Questions" (Answering questions related to the documents)
               - "Introduction" (Organizing a college-level intro to the "Framing
                   Question" - e.g. "What Caused the Salem Witch Crisis of 1692?)
          c) Skilled-Technical Reading: reading for meaning and insight with
              Secondary Sources
              - Textbook "Deconstruction"
              - Summary Box Assignments
     - Attendance: As with any class, consistent attendance can only increase
          the chances of success; repeated absences can only minimize those
     - All of the above, and more, are key in helping a student increase their
           human capital, which is something they can use and take with them
           to college & the rest of their lives . . . so, when someone asks me 
          WHY IS HISTORY IMPORTANT, my answer is: History is a great 
           vehicle for everyone, in that you can increase your brain-
           power and academic skills, but you also learn from the 
           successes and failures of historical figures, which, if you 
           are diligent, can apply those lessons to your life, and be very 
           productive and successful.  This course is designed for college-
           bound students, ESPECIALLY those students that pursue the 
           Dual Credit option for six credit hours through Nebraska 
           Wesleyan University.
Dan Jensen,
Jul 8, 2014, 8:40 AM