Student Competencies

Student Learning Goals and Competencies by Course Level


Note: This chart does not preclude assigning forms of upper-division work in lower-division classes, where appropriate.

Course Level Assigned Reading Classroom Activities Writing Assignments and Skills Critical Thinking in Discipline
100 & 200 level - completing chapter-length textbook readings, secondary source articles and book chapters, and frequent source document readings        

- learning basic historical chronologies


- reading and utilizing digital materials, to include online source materials and CD resources

- note taking in lectures        

- contributing to class discussions


- contributing to group discussions


- participating in debates


- group/partner work

- reading/film responses        

- reading summaries


- source document analysis


- brief position papers


- learning how to quote a source, primary or secondary


- learning basic editing and formatting guidelines

- learning to select appropriate topics        

- conducting basic research


- learning to recognize the difference between primary and secondary sources and beginning to think critically about both


- beginning to formulate a thesis or claim


- beginning to spot historical trends or parallels


- beginning to recognize authors' claims and arguments

History 250 - any of the above        

- reading archival materials, microfilm, news periodicals, and complete monographs

- any of the above        

- writing exercises


- library research


- archival research


- introduction to oral history as a primary source

- any of the above        

- primary research reports


- documentary and secondary source analysis


- archival source reports


- a major research essay


- learning to quote and cite sources, correctly and consistently


- graduating to quoting mainly primary source material, rather than secondary source authors


- learning to format and edit historical writing correctly and consistently


- learning to manage multiple deadlines


- learning how to assess the work of another historian and/or a classmate in the form of book/article reviews, feedback on drafts

- learning to write comparative source analyses        

- learning to formulate a thesis or claim


- learning to spot historical trends or parallels


- learning to reconcile or synthesize varying or discrepant data, claims, or evidence


- leaning to support claims with evidence


- learning to identify poor or conflicting evidence


- learning to identify bogus claims and faulty reasoning


- introduction to/development of the ability to recognize and assess historical interpretation

300-400 level - any of the above - any of the above        

- group or individual presentations


- making/ presenting slides


- engaging with community sources, archives, museums


- conducting original interviews

- any of the above        

- writing comparative papers across differing fields, eras, regions, etc.


- coming to master written format: structure, quoting sources, editing, citations, notes, and bibliographies


- writing often and meeting multiple deadlines

- coming to master the above        

- formulating more sophisticated responses to source documents or works of scholarship


- expressing complex ideas orally and in writing


- learning to build complex arguments supported by various sources

History 350 - any of the above - any of the above        

- participating in a simulation of a professional conference:
          *organizing themed panels
          *presenting paper, using PowerPoint/visuals
          *engaging in discussion and question/answer with audience.          

- any of the above        

- a major historiography paper

- recognizing and articulating the difference between history as "sum total" of past events vs. history as the created, written record of the past        

- understanding that the discipline of history has a history of its own


- recognizing and identifying various schools of historical thought and interpretation


- understanding that written history and historical interpretations are conditioned by the cultural context in which they originate


- understanding history as a profession and learning about opportunities for practice of that profession



900 Wood Road · P.O. Box 2000 · Kenosha, WI 53141-2000 P 262-595-2345

Who Are You?

Tell Us