IB History HL-2 Syllabus

IB History HL2: History of the Americas

Instructor
Charles Gleek, M.A.
Chair, Department of Social Sciences and Instructor of Geopolitics
The North Broward Preparatory School
Office Hours: I am generally available outside of class from 7.45-8.15 and 3.30-4.00 each day. However, my obligations as Department Chair, Assistant Varsity Boys Soccer Coach, and other leadership responsibilities here at North Broward require me to serve the NBPS community in other ways during these times. Consequently, it is strongly encouraged that students email me to make an appointment.

Important Links & Information

  1. Course calendar: http://bit.ly/14YZ2s
  2. My website: https://gleektopia.wordpress.com/
  3. Research and Writing Tools: https://gleektopia.wordpress.com/tools/
  4. Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/Gleektopia
  5. My personal email: cgleek@mac.com
  6. My Google Voice phone number: 561.865.6276
  7. My NBPS email: gleekc@nbps.org
  8. My NBPS voicemail: 954.237.0011 x234

Course Profile
“History is more than the study of the past. It is the process of recording, reconstructing and interpreting the past through the investigation of a variety of sources. It is a discipline that gives people an understanding of themselves and others in relation to the world, both past and present. Students of history should learn how the discipline works. It is an exploratory subject that poses questions without providing definitive answers. In order to understand the past, students must engage with it both through exposure to primary historical sources and through the work of historians. Historical study involves both selection and interpretation of data and critical evaluation of it. Students of history should appreciate the relative nature of historical knowledge and understanding, as each generation reflects its own world and preoccupations and as more evidence emerges. A study of history both requires and develops an individual’s understanding of, and empathy for, people living in other periods and contexts.”

Areas of Study
The IBO requires that students obtain in-depth knowledge in three subject areas in the HL Syllabus. This option covers major developments in the region from around 1760 to 2000: independence movements; the challenges of nation-building; the emergence of the Americas in global affairs; the Great Depression; the Second World War and the Cold War, and their impact on the region, as well as the transition into the 21st century. Within each section political, economic and social issues are considered and, when relevant, cultural aspects are included. The countries of the Americas form a region of great diversity but close historical links.

The Cold War and the Americas 1945 ‑ 1981
(24 August to 1 November)
This section focuses on the development and impact of the Cold War on the region. Most of the second half of the 20th century was dominated by the global conflict of the Cold War. Within the Americas, some countries were closely allied to the United States and some took sides reluctantly. Many remained neutral or sought to avoid involvement in Cold War struggles. A few, influenced by the Cuban Revolution, instituted socialist governments. No nation, however, escaped the pressures of the Cold War, which had a significant impact on the domestic and foreign policies of the countries of the region.

  1. Truman: containment and its implications for the Americas; the rise of McCarthyism and its effects on domestic and foreign policies of the United States; the Cold War and its impact on society and culture
  2. Korean War and the United States and the Americas: reasons for participation; military developments; diplomatic and political outcomes
  3. Eisenhower and Dulles: New Look and its application; characteristics and reasons for the policy; repercussions for the region
  4. United States’ involvement in Vietnam: the reasons for, and nature of, the involvement at different stages; domestic effects and the end of the war
  5. United States’ foreign policies from Kennedy to Carter: the characteristics of, and reasons for, policies; implications for the region: Kennedy’s Alliance for Progress; Nixon’s covert operations and Chile; Carter’s quest for human rights and the Panama Canal Treaty
  6. Cold War in either Canada or one Latin American country: reasons for foreign and domestic policies and their implementation

Civil rights and social movements in the Americas
(2 November to 17 January)
This section focuses on the origins, nature, challenges and achievements of civil rights movements after 1945. Movements represented the attempts to achieve equality for groups that were not recognized or accepted as full members of society. The groups challenged established authority and entrenched attitudes.

  1. Native Americans and civil rights: Latin America, the United States and Canada
  2. African Americans and the Civil Rights Movement: origins, tactics and organizations; the US Supreme court and legal challenges to segregation in education; ending of the segregation in the South (1955‑65)
  3. Role of Dr Martin Luther King in the Civil Rights Movement; the rise of radical African American activism (1965‑8): Black Panthers; Black Muslims; Black Power and Malcolm X
  4. Role of governments in civil rights movements in the Americas
  5. Youth culture and protests of the 1960s and 1970s: characteristics and manifestation of a counterculture
  6. Feminist movements in the Americas

Into the 21st century—from the 1980s to 2000
(18 January to 28 March)
This section focuses on changing trends in foreign and domestic policies in the Americas during the transition to the 21st century. The latter decades of the 20th century also witnessed significant political, social, cultural, economic and technological changes in the region.
With respect to the last four bullets points, a case study approach should be adopted, using one country of the region. The chosen country should be identified in the introduction to the examination answers.

  1. The United States, from bipolar to unilateral power: domestic and foreign policies of presidents such as Reagan, Bush, Clinton; challenges; effects on the United States; impact upon the hemisphere
  2. Restoration of democracy in Latin America: political, social and economic challenges (suitable examples could be Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay)
  3. Globalization and its effects: social, political and economic
  4. Revolution in technology: social, political and economic impact such as the role of the media and the Internet
  5. Popular culture: new manifestations and trends in literature, films, music and entertainment
  6. New concerns: threats to the environment; health

Mock IB Examinations
Required (29 March to 1 April)
During these four days, students will sit for a mock round of IB exams. During class periods where they are not taking exams, students will begin to review for their final IBO exams in IB History HL

Examination Review
Required (5 April to 2 May)
We will review the following topics during these weeks prior to the IB History HL Exam:

  1. The Arab-Israeli Conflict, 1945-79
  2. Causes, Practices, and Effects of War
  3. The Cold War
  4. The Cold War and the Americas 1945-81
  5. Civil rights and social movements in the Americas
  6. Into the 21st Century-from the 1980s to 2000

Assessments
All of the assignments in this course are designed to meet, and more often exceed, the standards mandated by the International Baccalaureate Organization. These assessments also reflect a differentiated approach to instructional design; allowing for students to both embrace their preferred learning styles as well as continually develop their knowledge and skill sets.

Examinations
All examinations are designed to replicate the type of questions found on the IBO examinations. Students will sit for examinations in Lakeside Lecture Hall on either Tuesdays or Wednesdays, or during specified examination periods in November (23-25th), February (2-5th), March/April (29-1st), or May (18-20th)

Learning Contracts
In support of , each student will adopt a Learning Contract each term. “[A] learning contract is a written agreement between teachers and students that defines learning goals and how they will be successfully accomplished. The contract is developed collaboratively by the teacher and learner. Learning contracts may be used for specific topic areas within a course, for independent study projects, for entire courses, or by self-directed learners entirely outside of an academic environment. The more self-directed the learner, the more successful the use of learning contracts.  Conversely, a gentle introduction to learning contracts creates self-directed learners.” (Learning Contracts Workshop Home).
In practice, this means that you-the student-will have a prominent role in your entire learning process. While the learning objectives are defined externally by the IBO, the specific content, assessments, and evaluation standards for this course will be established through a cooperative dialogue between the student and the instructor. While this approach to learning is rather progressive and democratic in nature, it does place a significant burden on the student to be an independent learner. More specific guidelines will be provided during the first week of school.

Portfolio
Throughout this course, all students will create and maintain an electronic portfolio. Portfolios are intended to allow each student to collect a broad range of content related to the course objectives, demonstrate a sophisticated understanding and application of the material, and highlight their best work in a diverse range of formats. Portfolios are designed to personal, unique expression of a student’s relationship and experience with an academic course; consequently, there is no one way to create a portfolio. That said, each portfolio must maintain a minimum of the following components:

  • Digital Portfolio: Students will use WordPress, Blogger, or Wiki (such as PB Works) to aggregate and demonstrate their work.
  • Content Mapping: Students are required to produce a document that lays out the plan and design for their portfolio; this must have approval prior to embarking on the portfolio. This plan should be created through during the first weeks of school, and be revisited regularly through conversations with the instructor.
  • Artifacts: These are samples of student work. There is no limit as to the number and variety of work to be included as artifacts in the portfolio.
    • Primary Sources: Primary sources are those statements (written and oral), documents, photographs and video, or similar material that are produced as original information. Students should be able to ascertain the Origin, Purpose, Value, and Limitation for each primary source they encounter.
    • Secondary Sources: Secondary sources are analytical, historiographic, or similar types of works that build upon or attempt to explain a variety of primary sources. Students should be able to critically-appraise (answer the “so what?” question) each of the secondary sources they come across during the course.
    • Journal Entries: Journal entries are reflective, written statements in response to a question, prompt, or other type of statement within the confines of the course.
    • Delicious (or similar) bookmarks: Students should bookmark any web-based resource they encounter during their studies. Not only does bookmarking offer a reliable means for aggregating and sorting a diverse array of information, but bookmarking also provides a first step in producing annotated bibliographies.
    • Annotated Bibliographies: Excellent research begins with a good research question and is strengthened with a thorough review of the literature. An Annotated Bibliography allows students to summarize the diverse set of resources encountered during the research process.
    • Book Reviews: Book Reviews are opportunities for students to offer commentary and analysis on significant works of historiography, related to both the course curriculum and their own research interests.
    • Research Papers: Those students interested in pursuing a research paper should follow the IBO standards for the Internal Assessment.
    • Examination Papers: Examination Papers will replicate those types of papers found on the IB Exam.
    • Students will be advised as to the specific nature of assessments (type of artifact, weight of assessment, and schedule for completion) throughout the year.

Instructor Responsibilities
My responsibility as an instructor is to provide a passionate and constructive environment in which learning can best occur. This means adapting and altering my classroom dynamics to meet the individual and collective needs of the students on a class-by-class basis. It is also my responsibility to work with the students through various means of instruction and learning styles, to foster each student’s creative and original thoughts based on their own experiences, and to aid the students in their quest for knowledge and understanding. Finally, I am responsible for meeting and exceeding the responsibilities spelled out in our NBPS Professional Protocols.

Student Responsibilities
Academic Honesty
Cheating, copying, or other forms of academic dishonesty (especially plagiarism) are serious violations of North Broward Preparatory School (NBPS) standards. NBPS rules provides for the sanction of students who cheat on their work and their exams. Students observed cheating in this class, that is engaging any activity inconsistent with NBPS rules will be penalized to the fullest extent possible. These penalties include a failing grade for the semester, official documentation in your transcript, and/or expulsion from the school. Students should take active steps to avoid academic dishonesty in all facets of their academic life. Taking this course requires that students are bound by the NBPS Honor Code

Classroom Decorum
The classroom is a professional environment, where students participate in the rigorous preparation for their college or university experience. In other words, students will conduct themselves, through both their words and their actions, in a manner consistent with the highest standards of personal behavior. The primary goal of the instructor is to establish and preserve a classroom that allows for each student to realize her or his full potential in an environment that motivates academic excellence. Consequently, students are expected to maintain, or even exceed, the behavioral standards that are enshrined in the North Broward Preparatory School Honor Code.

Communication
Communication between students, parents, and teachers is an essential component for academic growth and success. Both students and their parents are encouraged to contact the instructor via email or by phone, and/or to set up after-school meetings with the instructor to track the academic progress of their children.

Curriculum
The curriculum for the courses that I teach is based on Bloom’s Taxonomy; a tool designed to help educators categorize questions and content towards assisting students in their comprehension and retention of information. Students begin with all of the lessons with an exposure to Lower Order material and assignments and then work through exercises and assessments designed to address Higher Order questions and assignments. Students also build on knowledge they acquire throughout the year towards applying and synthesizing this information on future assignments.

Edline
In this course, Edline will be used primarily as a vehicle for disseminating grades to students and their parents. Students should check their Edline grades on a weekly basis to ensure that their academic progress is accurately reflected in the grading reports. All other course information will be maintained on the course’s external website and calendar. Links to the course’s external website and calendar will be maintained on Edline.

Quality of Submitted Work
Regardless of the type of assignment, students should consider the following guidelines before they submit their work for assessment: The student’s work thoughtfully addresses each question or part of the assignment; The student’s work synthesizes and incorporates ideas from the literature and course content; The student’s work provides clear, detailed examples, when applicable. When it comes to writing-a major component for the courses I facilitate-students should become intimately familiar with the standards and guidelines set forth by Stephen Van Evera (article provided to students). Specifically, all student work should meet the following standards: Writing is coherent and logical; Excellent sentence/paragraph construction and grammar; No more than five errors total in spelling, capitalization, and punctuation. Papers that fail to met these standards will not receive a grade and will be returned for a complete revision.

Skills
As with any course, the skills that students acquire and practice are equally as important as the content they engage. Students are expected to build on their existing individual time management, team project management, reading comprehension, note-taking, and writing skills. In addition, a student’s individual design and presentation skills will be engaged throughout the year. Cooperative skills such as working in teams, presentation, and critique will also be further throughout the year. The introduction of social science research skills will be be offered at the at various points during the course; with the commitment that the instructor and students will continuously develop these skills through the year.

Submission of Assignments
I do not accept late assignments
. Since education is an experience that requires student participation, attendance for this class is mandatory. If a student is absent, it is their responsibility to get the information discussed in class during you absence from one of their classmates. It is also the student’s responsibility to schedule any legitimate make-up work or examination within the time period allotted by NBPS. Students who miss the exams in November, February, or May need to speak directly with the instructor as soon as possible. All assignments are due on the dates and times posted.

Technology
Since almost every aspect of the course involves technology in some fashion, students are expected to have a portable computer available for any day in class. Each student’s laptop must conform to the 2009-2010 NBPS Laptop policy; failure to meet these standards will result in the appropriate sanctions as outlined by the Administration.

The use of cell phones, iPhones, Blackberrys or similar technologies, or instant messaging protocols on students’ portable computers for activities other than those assigned or central to the learning process, is strictly prohibited during class time. When applicable, devices will be confiscated by the instructor and returned at some future date. Students will be asked to surrender these devices or asked to leave the class, without prior warning, if any of these devices are used or ring during class.

Turnitin
All students are required to register for this course’s section at Turnitin.com. All major works, such as research papers, book reviews, annotated bibliographies, or other analytical pieces, will be submitted by the student to Turnitin.com to ensure and protect the originality of each student’s work. Please note that these submissions are in addition to the student incorporating their works into their portfolios. do not accept assignments via email or in person. Students with extreme extenuating circumstances should meet with the instructor as soon as possible.

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About Charlie Gleek

Ph.D. student in Comparative Studies and graduate instructor in the Department of English at Florida Atlantic University. My work takes place around intersections of postcolonial literature, quantitative literary analysis, and digital humanities.

Posted on 01/08/2009, in Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on IB History HL-2 Syllabus.

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