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HIST 1115, 1116: History of the United States

This course explores the history of the United States through the intersections of politics, economics, sciences, the arts, and significant social movements. Students will consider how the modern United States has emerged through the interactions of diverse ethnic, racial, national, class, and religious groups. HIST 1115 spans pre-Columbian societies through the Civil War, and HIST 1116 covers Reconstruction through the present.

Why take it?

Understanding the origins of the United States is essential to placing current events in a meaningful context. Few of the challenges facing modern Americans are entirely new.  Earlier generations also experienced technological upheaval, environmental change, pandemics, racial and ethnic tension, economic challenges, global conflict, and a host of other situations not unlike those our society faces today and will face in the future. This course will prepare students to think critically about how and why the United States has developed the way it has, to think creatively about how it can best move forward to address current challenges both effectively and ethically, and how to clearly communicate the answers to these and other critical questions.


There are no prerequisites for this course.

This course fulfills Pathways requirements in Critical Thinking in the Humanities, Critical Analysis of Identity and Equity in the United States, and Intercultural and Global Awareness.