Teaching Slavery and Identity in the American History Survey Course: Part One

Every semester I assign the chapter titled, “Turning People into Products” from Walter Johnson’s book, Soul by Soul: Life Inside the Antebellum Slave Marketto my survey-level American History students. As historians are painfully aware, slavery is one of the most misunderstood, overgeneralized, and downplayed topics in American history. My objective is to expose my students to…

Let The Students Speak

As we are all aware, the current news cycle is exhausting. Each day we are showered with stories about corruption, dishonesty, violence, sexism, natural disasters, and racism among many others. Social media provides a medium for individuals to respond immediately to any news story in real time. At first glance, it appears that the internet…

Teach Them What They Do Not Know

When I began to teach the United States survey course in Utah several years ago, I noticed that many of my students were not prepared to complete homework for my class and avoided participating during class.  Besides struggling with critical thinking and document analysis, which I expected, my students did not know how to conduct…