Second Edition   ©2017

Exploring American Histories, Volume 2

A Survey with Sources

Nancy A. Hewitt (Rutgers University) , Steven F. Lawson (Rutgers University)

  • ISBN-10: 1-4576-9471-9; ISBN-13: 978-1-4576-9471-4; Format: Paper Text, 680 pages

  • Podcast

    Nancy Hewitt and Steven Lawson talk about Incorporating Primary Sources into their Text

A building blocks approach to working with sources strengthens students’ interpretive skills. Designed to help students build confidence in their ability to work with sources, each chapter leads students in a regular step-by-step approach to analyzing documents and is augmented by a special Guide to Analyzing Primary Sources in the appendix of the book. Four distinctive source treatments extend from the narrative of each chapter and all include headnotes with essential background information and questions to guide interpretation and place sources in a larger historical framework.

  • Near the start of each chapter a Guided Analysis of a textual or visual source appears with annotating questions in the margins that model for students how to analyze a specific phrase or detail of the source as well as the source as a whole.
  • Next, each chapter progresses to the more complex task of Comparative Analysis, a paired set of documents that show contrasting or complementary perspectives on a particular issue.
  • Near the end of each chapter students encounter a Solo Analysis, a single document that encourages students to further practice working with sources without the aid of annotations or a comparative source to focus interpretation.
  • Finally, to give students the opportunity to draw deeper conclusions, a Document Project of 4-5 sources focused on a central topic concludes each chapter. Alternate document projects, which appear in the companion reader and in the LaunchPad alongside the e-book, give instructors additional rich options for assignment.

An unprecedented number of primary sources underscores the rich diversity of perspectives in American history. More than 250 high interest written and visual sources—from Mary Jemison’s account a Colonial Army attack on the Seneca nation to a diary entry from a Japanese American during internment—highlight a range of perspectives on social, political, economic, international, and cultural developments and allow students to evaluate the narrative’s interpretations and formulate interpretations of their own. Students gain expose to a wide range of source types, including maps, engravings, paintings, sermons, speeches, letters, diaries, journals, memoirs, newspaper articles, political cartoons, court briefs, petitions, political statements, advertisements, and photographs. Working with both familiar and lesser known sources, students will experience American history from a rich assortment of vantage points.

This new U.S. history narrative constructed from multiple perspectives helps students to appreciate the variety of ways people experienced the past. True to their plural title, Hewitt and Lawson present an inclusive view of American history that shows how events at the national level, shaped by elite political and economic leaders, directly affect the lives of ordinary people, and how actions at the local level affect decisions made at the centers of national government and commerce. By examining multiple angles of American history students will better understand how the impact of events means different things to different people and constituent groups.

A format combining narrative and documents provides exceptional value and convenience for students and assignment flexibility for instructors. By placing the narrative and documents together the book offers a cost-effective way to purchase course materials with the added convenience of having everything students need in one place. This value increases through the assessment tools and additional resources in LaunchPad and the new primary source reader Document Projects for Exploring American Histories, which both can be bundled for an exceptional discount.

The authors are respected scholars and experienced teachers you can trust to elevate discourse and engage students. Distinguished scholars and expert U.S. survey teachers Nancy Hewitt and Steven Lawson bring extensive teaching experience and a strong command of the scholarship to help them choose the not only the most important stories of American history but also place sources most likely to engage students at the center of the course.

LaunchPad  helps you do more than you can with print alone. Free when packaged with the book, LaunchPad  course space and interactive e-book is ready to use as is, or can be edited and customized with your own material, and assigned right away. Developed with extensive feedback from history instructors and students, LaunchPad includes the complete narrative e-book, as well as abundant primary documents, maps, images, assignments and activities. The aims of key learning outcomes are addressed via formative and summative assessment, short answer and essay questions, multiple choice quizzing, and LearningCurve, an adaptive learning tool designed to get students to read before they come to class. Available with training and support, LaunchPad  can help you take your teaching into a new era.

LearningCurve ensures students come to class prepared. Tired of your students not reading the textbook? Would you like to know what they read and how much they understood—BEFORE they come to class? Assign LearningCurve, the adaptive learning tool created for your survey textbook in LaunchPad, and the system’s analytics will show how your students are doing with the reading so that you can adapt your class as needed. Each chapter-based LearningCurve activity gives students multiple chances to understand key concepts, return to the narrative textbook if they need to reread, and answer questions correctly. Over 90% of students report satisfaction with LearningCurve's fun and accessible game-like interface. LearningCurve appeals to students so that they engage with the textbook, and it helps you to know what they know before class begins.

A range of options offers convenience and value. In addition to the standard bound textbook, this edition is also available in a value-priced version without sources, the Value Edition for Exploring American Histories, which can be bundled with the companion documents projects reader or with the text’s dedicated version of LaunchPad, which contains the interactive e-book of the text with all of its source features and plus accompanying study resources fully integrated in a course space that makes everything assignable and assessable—and all for free when packaged with any version of the textbook. The textbook is also available in convenient, discount-priced loose-leaf and PDF formats.


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