Published Date

January 1, 2016

Resource Type

AHA Resource, For the Classroom


Public History, State & Local (US)

AHA Topics

Teaching & Learning, Undergraduate Education


United States

This resource was developed as part of the AHA’s Globalizing the US History Survey project


By Brittany Adams

Institution: Irvine Valley College

Location: Irvine, CA

Year: 2016


For this assignment students should assume the role of the “history professor.” Students will generate an assignment that would be acceptable for an instructor to use in our early American survey course. To create an assignment that would be worthy of college credit, you must assess what information is important in a course and what skills you think college students should be able to demonstrate. I challenge you to think about historical methodology from the perspective of an evaluator. Your job is to come up with an assignment that would require students to engage with local and regional history. You do NOT have to complete the assignment that you create (only create the assignment itself).

You should choose ONE of the following types of assignments to create. Remember that both assignments require a different skill set, but should require students to engage with major themes of our course including migrations, trade, first encounters, environmental impacts, and diverse populations.

An essay exam: Write the instructions, questions, and rubric for an essay exam that looks at early California history in the wider themes of our course. You must write between seven to ten essay questions that require students to not merely summarize material but discuss content within the framework of our class.


Local history site assignment: Write the instructions and rubric for an assignment related to visiting a local historical site or museum. Select the local site that you would like “students” to visit. In addition, you must research this site and explain the important of the local/regional site and its connections to the wider themes of our course to your imagined students.