History Skills

  • History and Policy Education Program

    Oct. 2, 2015 - Modeled on the National History Center's Congressional Briefings by Historians program, the History and Policy Education Program aims to help students appreciate the importance of bringing historical perspectives to contemporary policy conversations.  Designed to be adaptable to many courses and teaching styles, the Mock Policy Briefing initiative provides a guide for history educators to develop and host briefings about the historical dimensions of current policy questions.  Read more about the background of the initiative in the October issue of Perspectives on History. 

  • Linking Family History and World History

    Linda Pomerantz shares a lesson plan designed to illustrate ways that family history research using visual primary sources may be incorporated into a world history survey course. The lesson demonstrates ways to work with primary source materials and link them to large themes in world history.

  • Plagiarism: Curricular Materials for History Instructors

    History instructors can use this guide to teach students how to avoid plagiarism. It includes a discussion of how the American Historical Association defines plagiarism, tips on preventing and detecting plagiarism in student work, exercises to sharpen students’ understanding of plagiarism, a list of suggested readings for graduate students, an annotated bibliography, and a list of useful web sites.

  • Resources for Tuning the History Discipline

    Since the first phase of the AHA's Tuning project began in 2012, faculty participants from history departments around the country have reviewed many aspects of their home-department curricula. As a result of their efforts, the AHA is now able to offer examples of revised curricular materials from a broad range of institutions.

    Here you will find different sorts of documents produced by faculty for their local needs. Resources include rubrics, assignments, statements of course outcomes and degree requirements, survey questions for history majors or alumni, and other types of materials. The most common format for these resources is the degree specification, a detailed statement about the history degree program at a particular institution.

    For questions and feedback, please contact AHA Special Projects Coordinator Julia Brookins by email at jbrookins@historians.org. For a broader discussion of these and other teaching and learning issues in history, please join the Teaching and Learning community on communities.historians.org.

  • The AHA Guide to Teaching and Learning with New Media

    A 2005 AHA pamphlet by John F. McClymer

  • ChronoZoom Memory and History Project Rubric

  • Sample Assignment: Charting Your Journey with ORBIS

    Created by John Rosinbum as part of his Teaching with #DigHist series on AHA Today, This assignment asks students to craft a hypothetical journey using ORBIS, a digital humanities project at Stanford University that allows users to plot a route between sites in the Roman Empire and simulate the journey. After rationalizing the choices made when planning their trip, students use a comic strip or travel diary to recount the trials and tribulations of their journey. The assignment helps develop skills in writing narratives, real or imagined. In addition, it develops the historical skills of contextualization and causation by asking the students to ground their narratives in a place they have already learned about and then justify the steps in their journey. While designed for middle school students, the assignment and attached rubric could easily be adapted for students ranging from elementary school to entry-level undergraduate.

  • Sample Assignment: Visualizing the Transatlantic Slave Trade with Voyages

    Created by John Rosinbum as part of his Teaching with #DigHist series on AHA Today, this assignment offers students the opportunity to use their visual and/or technical skills to create a visualization of the transatlantic slave trade. Students will use the information provided by Voyages to create either a digital or an analog data visualization of the trade. In addition they will write a detailed guide explaining their process and defending their choices. This assignment asks them to think deeply about the process of visualizing history and personally involves them in the process of generating a better understanding of the past.

  • Sample Assignment: Tracking a Slave Ship with Voyages

    Created by John Rosinbum as part of his Teaching with #DigHist series on AHA Today, asks students to investigate a specific slave vessel and contextualize its journeys within their broader knowledge of the trade and concurrent historical events/processes that might have affected it.

  • Teaching and Learning Video Resources

    Teaching is an essential skill for any historian, and the AHA works hard to produce resources for those teaching at all career stages and at all levels of history. Our Teaching and Learning video library includes workshops on K-12 and undergraduate teaching, reflections from historians on globalizing their US survey courses, and sessions on issues of vital importance to history education such as learning outcomes, dual enrollment, and the transition from high school to college.