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Fall 2012

History Courses:

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HIS109 - The American Worker
Credits: 3

Catalog Description: Explores the development of the American labor movement from its formative years to the present. Focuses on the sociological, political and economic effects of the labor movement on the worker and society.

Lecture: 3 hrs.

Course Student Learning Outcomes (CSLOs):
At the conclusion of the semester, based upon extended writing, examination questions and classroom activities, students will be able to:

1.Analyze at least three distinctive features of the European labor environment on the eve of colonization.
2.Compare and contrast the role of indentured servants with the role of African slaves in the colonial American economy.
3.Identify the development of three distinct regional economic systems in colonial America.
4.Analyze two functions of the craft guild movement in the early American economy.
5.Identify at least three forerunners to the modern industrial system.
6.Analyze at least four problems facing nineteenth century industrial centers in America.
7.Evaluate at least three 19th century attempts at developing national labor organizations.
8.Assess at least four reasons for the rise and decline of the Knights of Labor.
9.Evaluate at least three reasons for the failure of the agricultural labor force to organize an effective union in the 19th century.
10.Assess at least three causes of labor violence in late 19th century America.
11.Analyze the importance of the American Federation of Labor on the American labor union movement.
12.Assess at least two distinct effects of the Progressive movement on American labor.
13.Evaluate at least two reasons why radical labor groups such as the I.W.W. and the Socialist Workers Party failed to develop significant membership among American workers.
14.Analyze at least three distinctive impacts of World War I on restructuring the American economy.
15.Analyze at least two of the reasons for the increased role of minorities and women on the labor force during World War I.
16.Analyze at least three distinctive impacts of the Great Depression on labor.
17.Identify at least four effects of World War II on the labor movement.
18.Analyze at least two effects of the Taft-Hartley Act on American labor.
19.Identify at least three reasons for the decline of American organized labor in the 1980's.
20.Identify at least three ways globalization has impacted the American workforce.
21.Demonstrate knowledge of a basic narrative of American history by answering a set of questions on the American labor movement with emphasis upon the forces that led to the formation of the labor movement, how those forces have changed over time, and the indicators of future directions based on the sociological, political and economic effects of the labor movement on the worker and society as a whole. *
22.Demonstrate knowledge of the common institutions in modern American society and how they have affected different groups by writing a 2-4 page paper analyzing the affects of the institutional structures of American society on a labor movement issue (critical thinking), based upon library research involving a minimum of three sources utilizing online full-text databases(information management).*
23.Demonstrate an understanding of America's evolving relationship with the rest of the world by answering questions on the American labor movement with an emphasis upon future directions based on the emergence of the global economy and America's role within that global economy. *

* This course objective has been identified as a student-learning outcome that must be formally assessed as part of the College's Comprehensive Assessment Plan. All faculty teaching this course must collect the required data (see Assessing Student Learning Outcomes form) and submit the required analysis and documentation at the conclusion of the semester to the Office of Assessment and Special Projects.

Content Outline:
I.European Developments in Labor
II.Colonial America Labor System
III.The First Unions' Craft Unions
IV.The Workingman's Party
V.Impact of Industrialization
VI.Movements toward a National Organization
VII.Era of Political Upheaval
VIII.Rise and Decline of the Knights of Labor
IX.Movements in the Agricultural Labor Area
X.The American Federation of Labor
XI.The Progressive Era
XII.The Communist and Socialist Impact on Labor
XIII.Labor in World War I
XIV.Labor in Retreat in the 1920's and 1930's
XV.The New Deal
XVI.World War II and Labor unions
XVII.Taft-Hartley to the A.F.L.-C.I.O. merger
XVIII.Labor in the 1970's
XIX.The Reagan Revolution and American Worker
XX.Perspectives for the Future

Effective Term: Spring 2003