The MAT History student will take three courses in History. The offerings vary each year, and could be any three of the following four courses. We acknowledge that the secondary school history teacher must manage this tension between a daunting sweep of historical data along with the need for theoretical/thematic coherence and integrity, as well as skill building. Each MAT History course is designed simultaneously to give a solid grounding in the material one might be asked to teach in one or more of the NYS secondary school social studies courses, while also stretching well beyond the limits—both in terms of subject matter and theoretical frameworks—found in the high school curricula.
The ideal preparation for MAT history courses is a B.A. in history that required completion of a substantive research paper based on primary documents and historiographical analysis. Otherwise, applicants ideally have taken college-level courses in U.S. and non-U.S. history, reflecting the organization of the social studies curriculum into U.S. and global history; or world history components, with at least some of these courses at the 300 or 400 level, requiring research papers or other writing-intensive projects. Since the history curriculum provides preparation for the teaching of social studies, course work in the social sciences—in such fields as anthropology, sociology, economics, political science, and area studies (for example, Africana studies, Asian studies, women’s studies)—is also valuable. Applicants who did not earn a B.A. in history are evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
History 513:Teaching Social Studies: The Learner as Individual, A Field ExperienceVIEW MORE >>
Students spend one morning per week in a local summer school program. This introduction to the public schools provides MAT students with opportunities to work with students one-on-one or in small groups in a tutorial mode. As a first experience with the public schools, graduate students are involved with diagnostic approaches to teaching, focusing on individuals with various kinds of recognized academic needs. These experiences provide real contexts for inquiry and study in the summer teaching strand. Required noncredit course.
This independent study course requires students to become teacher-researchers, examining the effects of particular practices or designs on student learning in the context of their particular field of study. Review of the pertinent literature, research design and implementation, analysis of data, and conclusions leading to further iterations build a practice of inquiry and reflection that are essential to developing best practices in education. Typically, research questions investigate real questions about student learning in the context of authentic practices in the academic discipline. MAT faculty act as advisers to these projects, providing support over three quarters, from the initial development of research questions and literature reviews in the summer quarter until the final "publication" of the research document at the end of the spring quarter. 6 credits.
What is World History? How important is historiography? This course is a graduate level investigation of changes and trends in the research and writing of history as practiced by professional historians. This course draws from the fields of modern European, African and World History. The larger questions to keep in mind throughout the course are: What are the interpretive strategies used and debated by historians? What type of evidence does the author use? How does a historian work with both evidence and interpretive frameworks to produce historical writing? To get at some of these questions, the course draws largely (but not entirely) from historical writing about the Great War from a variety of historiographical points of view. Secondary School teaching of WWI tends to come from the diplomatic history approach, and to emphasize the war on the western front. To enlarge this view, we will read not only from the classic “causes of WWI” literature, but also from social, gender, cultural, and post-colonial treatments of the war. Working with this diversity of texts gives us opportunity explicitly to discuss how different historiographical approaches change how we understand "what happened."
This graduate course is designed to explore key themes and historiography in US history since 1945. Course readings provide varying interpretations of postwar domestic politics, the influence of the Cold War, and the social and cultural changes that have shaped American life from WWII to the Reagan administration. The readings look in depth at cold war foreign and domestic social and economic policies, civil rights, feminism, the influence of the media in shaping the rebellion of the 1960s, and the conservative revival of the 1970s. 3 credits.
This world history course works in varying depth with four case studies: France, Russia, China, and South Africa. The structure of the course affords students the opportunity to explore questions such as: What is a revolution? How did one revolution influence another? Can one use world-historical narratives to understand non-Western history? How does engaging with the specifics of the South African case help in understanding larger world-historical ideologies and changes? There are no pre-determined answers to these questions; however, students prepare to engage with these questions by learning about the French, Russian, and Chinese revolutions, African anti-colonial struggle, and the history of 20th-century South Africa through secondary texts; historiographical essays; historical monographs; multimedia sources including film, song, poetry and fiction; and with firsthand testimonies. Students write several short papers, engage in role-play activities, and write a longer, integrative thematic essay engaging with the essential questions of the course. 3 credits.
History 528:History of American Slavery and Reconstruction VIEW MORE >>
This graduate seminar on the History American Slavery and Reconstruction examines the complex social, economic, and political nature of slavery as it developed across both time and place in North America. In early-17th century Virginia, blacks lived much like white indentured servants with the same ability to purchase their contracts, and own land, guns, and other laborers. Over time, regional “black codes” restricted their movements and rights, until by the time of the Revolution, slavery was recognized and justified by the US Constitution and it became the defining social, political, and economic system of the American south. Students will study: the unique way that black servant/slaves were first imported and then enslaved in the Chesapeake and Carolinas in the 17th and 18th centuries; the regional, social, cultural and familial patterns among blacks in the post-Revolutionary period; relationships between blacks and whites within the 19th century plantation household; slave resistance; the lives and culture of free blacks; and pro-slavery and anti-slavery arguments in the antebellum period. The course ends with an examination of emancipation and the social, economic, and political process of Reconstruction. Throughout we will pay close attention to historiography: the questions, sources, methods, and analytical frameworks historians have developed to understand slavery. 3 credits.
History 532: The Academic Research Project in History VIEW MORE >>
The history research project is intended to give history students experience in the kind of discipline-based thinking about their subject matter that will find practical application in secondary school teaching. It consists of three parts: the historiographical synthesis, the textbook critique, and annotated documents. The first section, the historigraphical synthesis, requires students to combine critical reading and writing about historical topics, historiographical commentary on secondary sources, and formal historical writing techniques. Students select a topic that will allow them to analyze the secondary historical literature on a topic of their choosing from one of the broad themes from the current U.S. and/or global history curriculum in New York State, and then place each of their sources within its historiographical context. In the second section of the project the student writes a sophisticated historiographical critique and analysis of a secondary school textbook account of the chosen topic. In the third section of the ARP, students provide a carefully selected and annotated collection of primary source documents; these documents speak to the historical topic under investigation. Students may conclude their papers by suggesting avenues for future historical research and/or questions raised or remaining in their minds by their analytical reviews of sources. The history research project is completed over the course of the fall and winter quarters. 9 credits.
MAT students work as apprentices with one of their mentor-teacher partners in the fall quarter for a ten-week cycle. Students act as full-time apprentices and research partners, assuming increasing responsibility for instruction and collecting and analyzing data with their mentor teachers. In a radical departure from conventional student-teaching models, apprentices work closely with their mentors, moving gradually from participant observer to teaching assistant to co-teacher and, finally, assuming primary responsibility for classroom instruction in all its dimensions. The mentor teacher and the graduate adviser observe regularly and provide ongoing formative evaluations in close collaboration with the student. Students also meet with their MAT peers throughout the student-teaching cycle to support each other through shared writing, reflection, and discussion. 7 credits.
The MAT student completes the apprenticeship cycle with a second mentor teacher for an eleven-week period that ends in mid-May. The field experience is structured to provide the MAT student with ongoing guidance and feedback from the graduate adviser and the mentor teacher. An apprenticeship model that emphasizes the guided acquisition of teaching competencies, carefully monitored by mentor and adviser, insures that student learning in the public school classroom is not compromised and that the apprentice is held to standards in teaching that reflect program concerns for authentic learning in the disciplines. MAT students continue to meet weekly as a group to share and reflect upon their experiences. 10 credits.
Bard Master of Arts in Teaching Bard College, 7401 South Broadway, Red Hook, NY 12571