Course Requirements

Reading assignments and class participation (35% of course grade)

Participation and lecture attendance are mandatory.  Professors will assign up to 5 points for class participation.

There will be twelve assignments. These will generally ask you to respond to some of the reading in the syllabus. For the most part, these assignments require short answers of no more than two paragraphs (or two hundred words) to questions about the readings. There are some guidelines for writing responses from a past class class here. Responses are worth up to 3 points each. Your two lowest grades will be dropped. Thus, each student can receive up to 30 points for assignments, based on their ten best assignment grades.  From time to time you will be called upon to discuss your assignments in class.

Assignments will normally be given on Thursdays and must be submitted via bspace by 5 pm on Sunday. No late assignments and no assignments sent by email will be accepted. You may be called upon to discuss your assignments in class.

Midterm exam or paper (25% of course grade)

The midterm will be an 80 minute, in-class exam and include three essay questions, two chosen from a list of questions provided in advance. There will also be short-answer sections asking you to identify quotations, people, dates, images, and other aspects of the course.

We will give out a study guide. Exam questions will be based on material covered in readings, slides, and class discussion. Class slides will normally be posted shortly before each class.

Students can ask to submit a paper instead of a midterm exam.  This paper will be a 2000 word essay in response to one of a list of essay questions. We will provide a list of topics on March 1 and, if you wish to write an essay, you must let us know in writing which one you propose to write by March 8. We will let you know if you may proceed by March 10. The paper is due at 9 a.m. on the morning of the midterm (March 22). If you do not submit by that time, you should take the midterm exam, which starts at 9:30.

Final (40% of course grade)

Modelled on the midterm, this three-hour exam will ask you to answer five essay questions, at least three of which will be on the study guide. As with the midterm, there will be short-answer questions as well. The final will cover the entire syllabus, but its emphasis will be on the second half of the semester.


From time to time we will give brief homework exercises to be discussed in class. No grade will be assigned for class participation as such, but such exercises and contribution to discussions in general will be taken into account when we assess the grade for class participation.