OPVL Analysis of Historical Sources

    This is a learning unit on how to conduct an OPVL (Origin, Value, Purpose, Limitation) analysis of primary sources in your high school history classes.  The unit is designed for the high school history student!
GOAL:  At the end of this unit you will be able to write a complete OPVL analysis paragraph on a primary source.

In this unit you will learn the following information about historical primary sources:
  1. Primary Sources in History 
  2. Origin*
  3. Purpose
  4. Values
  5. Limitations
  6. A Sample OPVL paragraph
  7. Values and Limitations of Types of Sources
  8. Practice Exercise 1
  9. Practice Exercise 2**
*You will also find a practice example throughout each of the modules for Origin, Purpose, Value and Limitation.
**Practice Exercise 2 contains a list of primary sources by historical eras

    History teachers: This unit can be incorporated into your history curriculum at any point and at any grade level.  Your students can learn about OPVL analyses completely on their own, as a homework assignment, or in conjunction with your lesson plans.  Assign #8: Practice Exercise 1 as homework, and any topic from # 9: Practice Exercise 2 as an individual or group project.

    History students: This unit can be completed if you are looking for additional help in your history class.  Use #1 primary Sources in History to get an overview of the types of sources.  Use the practice example in #2-5 as a template for the analysis of your chosen source(s).  See a completed OPVL paragraph in #6 and read about the common values and limitations of frequently analyzed primary sources in #7.

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OPVL Analysis by KDM is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.