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North Idaho College • Coeur d'Alene • Social & Behavioral Sciences • Social Science

American Indian History HIST-240

  • Fall 2012
  • Section 1
  • 3.0 Credits
  • 08/27/2012 to 12/20/2012
  • Modified 08/27/2012

Contact Information


Annie T. Oakes

Instructor’s Contact Information

Office: Lee-Kildow Hall 204E
Phone: (208) 665-5067
E-mail: [email protected]

Office Hours: Wed. 10:30 – Noon and by appointment

Meeting Times

Course Location:

SBT 209 Wed. 9:00 AM – 10:15 AM and online


Method of Delivery:

Lecture, collaborative work groups, discussion (both in-class and online), and online assignments.

This is a Hybrid course. Instead of 2 weekly class meetings, we will meet once on Wednesdays (9:00 AM – 10:15 AM), and other activities and assignments will take place online throughout the week. Class activities will be posted at the beginning of each week. All assignments must be finished for successful completion of the course. 

Course materials will be made available on the Blackboard site for our class. Please check it frequently so you can print out handouts and other materials for the next class.

I encourage you to form study groups outside of class. We will have one scheduled individual conference to discuss your progress in the class and address any questions you may have.


This course provides a historical overview of post-contact Indian and non-Indian relations and their effect on Indian Cultures, including reactions, adaptations, and conflicts in social, political, and economic systems.  Some emphasis will be placed on prominent Indian personages and geographical groups, their migrations and intertribal andU.S.government relationships, including federal Indian policy.  Students will gain a deeper sense of “nations” and understanding of the importance of tribal heritage and identify from a historical perspective.  It meets a cultural diversity requirement for the A.A. degree or a social science requirement for the A.A., A.S., and A.A.S. degrees. 



Calloway, Colin G. First Peoples, A Documentary of American Indian History. 4th edition. Bedford/St. Martin’s

Nabokov, Peter. Native American Testimony. Penquin Books

A book of your choice from the American Indian History Book List provided in the Lessons folder on our Blackboard site (instructor approval required)

This course requires fairly well-developed reading and writing skills.  Students are expected to keep up on the text reading, attend class, keep up on their critical thinking/reflective essay assignments, turn in exams on time, and to participate in class activities


In conjunction withNorthIdahoCollege's general education mission and goals, nine general education abilities have been developed which are to be obtained and measured during the student's time at NIC.  These nine abilities are:

  1. Aesthetic Response
  2. Communication
  3. Critical/Creative Thinking and Problem Solving
  4. Historical, Cultural, Environmental and Global Reasoning
  5. Information Literacy
  6. Mathematical, Scientific and Symbolic Reasoning
  7. Social Responsibility/Citizenship
  8. Valuing/Ethical Reasoning
  9. Wellness

Course Outcomes & Assessment:

By the end of the semester, the student should be able to do the following:

*  Demonstrate a basic understanding of key ideas, diverse cultural views, and events associated with the history of the American Indians. This will be measured through class activities, class discussions, quizzes, essay assignments, and exams.

*  Demonstrate an understanding of the diverse contributions of different American Indian tribes in the larger context of American history. This will be measured through class activities, class discussions, quizzes, essay assignments, and exams.

 *  Indicate some of the important ways in which American Indians have influenced and changed American society, politics, and culture.  In addition, be aware of how American Society, politics, and culture have affected American Indian cultures. This will be measured through class discussions, quizzes, essay assignments, and exams.

*  Explain the relationship among social questions and political issues of American Indians in relation to their historical treatment. This will be measured through class discussions, quizzes, essay assignments, and exams.

*  Demonstrate an understanding of the culturally grounded assumptions which have influenced the perception of American Indians and behavior towards American Indians. This will be measured through class activities, class discussions, quizzes, and exams.

In this course, all of the abilities except number six are addressed on one level or another. Nevertheless, the development of the following three abilities is primarily focused upon in this course:

Historical, Cultural, and Global Awareness --In this course you will be given an historical and cultural overview of selected American Indian cultures and their life experiences.   You will also be given an historical overview of Indian/Non-Indian relations and the connection between this history and current life challenges.  Your ability to do this will be measured through class activities, class discussions, quizzes, and exam questions

Social Responsibility/Citizenship – American Indian/Non-Indian relations (past and present) and contemporary issues confronting American Indian communities provide some of the more important focuses of this course.  We will take a close look at these issues and discuss the notion of responsibility, both past and present.  This ability will be measured through class discussions, quizzes, essay assignments, and exam questions. 

Valuing/Ethical Reasoning --In this course you will be asked to apply, compare, and contrast what you know, believe, and understand toward developing an empathetic and analytical understanding of American Indian value perspectives.  Your ability to do this will be measured through essay assignments, quizzes, and exam questions.



Each assignment builds on the last, and you must complete each assignment in this course. Your course grade will be made up of the following:





Your Scores

Critical Thinking/Reflective Essay #1




Critical Thinking/Reflective Essay #2




Exam #1




Exam #2




8 Quizzes, 25 points each




Class Group Project




Book Summary and PowerPoint




Participation, including attendance, responses in Discussion Threads, and other short responses (* 10 weeks @ 20 points and 5 weeks @ 10 points)

* 250








Letter grades will be assigned based upon the following percentage breakdown:


92.5-100% (833-900 pts.) = A                        72.5-77.4% (653-697 pts.) = C

89.5-92.4% (806-832 pts.) = A-                      69.5-72.4% (626-652 pts.) = C-

87.5-89.4% (788-805 pts.) = B+                      67.5-69.4% (608-625 pts.) = D+

82.5-87.4% (743-787 pts.) = B                        62.5-67.4% (563- 607pts.) = D

79.5-82.4% (716-742 pts.) = B-                       59.5-62.4% (536-562 pts.) = D-

77.5-79.4% (698-715 pts.) = C+                      Below 59.5% = F

Participation (250 points): Please keep in mind that you are expected to be “present” online in lieu of a second class meeting throughout the semester. Among the various elements of participation, attendance is important to student academic success, especially in classes where a high degree of participation is stressed. In this class, we will engage in numerous in-class activities and discussions important to your learning. Therefore, after missing two class meetings, students will lose 20 points for each additional absence. In addition, showing up to class late or leaving early are disruptive to the class, so two late arrivals or early departures count as one absence. If you need to leave early, please let me know before class starts. Creating a buddy system with a classmate or note-taker can help you stay up with class discussion in the event of an unavoidable absence; your instructor cannot re-create what you have missed.

Other Participation elements include making substantive posts (no less than 100 words and generally between 100 and 150 words) in our online Discussion Forums, contributing in a constructive way to live discussion, responding to Entry Tasks during class meetings, and being an active, responsible group member. Students missing class for extracurricular activities, such as athletics, need to complete the course work, turn in assignments, and take quizzes and exams prior to missing class.

Critical Thinking/Reflective Essay Assignments (total of 150 points): You will write two essays in this category. Your first is weighted at 50 points and will receive generous feedback from your instructor, which you are expected to use to show improvement on the second essay, weighted at 100 points. In each assignment, the topic or theme will revolve around what we are doing in class at the time. No late essays will be accepted.

Exams (200 pts.): Two exams will be given in this course worth 200 points total.  The final exam will not be comprehensive and will carry the same weight as the first exam.  The exams will consist of a combination of essay, short answer and multiple choice questions based on both reading and lecture material and will be partly online, partly in class. No electronic devices are allowed during the in-class portion of an exam. No late exams will be given.

Quizzes (200 pts.): There will be 8 quizzes 25 points each). 

Group Project (100 pts.): There will be 1 group project for the semester worth 100 points each.  There will be additional information on the class project handed out in class. 

Book Summary and Presentation (100 pts.): You’ll choose a book from the History Book List, read it over the semester, and submit a written summary and put on a presentation as described in the instructions.

Course Policies

Absence Policy:  Several departments at NIC have agreed upon a recommendation that students not miss more than the equivalent of two weeks in a single course, which means six absences in a three-day-per-week class, four absences in a two-day-per-week class, two absences in a one-evening per-week class, or two weeks of online participation. For a hybrid class, this means that any combination of 4 absences – whether missing a Wednesday class meeting or not showing evidence of being “present” online in any week during the semester – will inevitably negatively impact the student’s grade. 

Academic Dishonesty:  Cheating, plagiarism, or any other form of academic dishonesty will not be tolerated. Anyone caught violating this policy will receive an “F” for the course and the Dean of Students will be notified of the incident.

The department’s definition of plagiarism comes from the Council of Writing Program Administrators:

In an instructional setting, plagiarism occurs when a writer deliberately uses someone else’s language, ideas, or other original (no common-knowledge) material without acknowledging its source.  

Behaviors considered plagiarism include:

  • Using someone else’s exact words without using direct quotes.
  • Paraphrasing or summarizing someone’s words or ideas without giving credit to the source’s author.
  • Submitting another’s work as the student’s own. This includes a purchased paper, a borrowed paper, or portions of another person’s work.

Behavior not considered plagiarism but of concern is sloppy documentation of words and ideas borrowed from another source and/or submitting an old paper as new work without the instructor’s permission.

Electronics and Other Distractions:  Cell phones, laptops, and other electronic equipment are disruptive in a classroom and MUST BE turned off and put away during class. There are two exceptions: (1) Students who need to use a laptop for notetaking will be required to sit in the front row of the class and may use their laptops ONLY for notetaking. (2) During the group projects, it may be helpful to have access to a laptop in class.  Also, reading newspapers, magazines, and texts from other courses or doing homework for another class during our class is disrespectful. If you need to prepare for an exam in another class, simply don’t show up to this one and take the absence penalty.

Class Discussions:  You should read the weekly readings before class meets, so that you are prepared for class discussion. All discussions must be carried on in a respectful and mature manner, keeping in mind that not everyone agrees with the religious or ideological views expressed. This does not mean that you cannot disagree with someone; in fact, we will find that people may disagree with one another quite a bit in this class. The key is to do it respectfully and tactfully and to base statements on facts and not merely opinions, biases, and stereotypes. Critically examining issues is desirable, but personal attacks on people are not. Disruptive behavior will not be tolerated, as explained in the Student Code of Conduct:

Contact with Instructor:  Please do not insult the class by asking “Did I miss anything?” if you are absent, and please do not try to get information regarding missed lectures from your instructor. It is your responsibility to get the notes for missed days from classmates. I am more than willing to assist students who attended class better understand material presented or to help you overcome problems you may have at any point in the course. I may be able to help you via email or in my office during office hours. 


Course due dates are posted by unit under the Lessons tab on our class Blackboard site.

Please keep in mind that this is not a self-paced course. You must complete the Discussion Questions and responses to classmates within the designated week to earn Participation points and to keep up with assignments.

Additional Items

Class Community

Community is especially important in a hybrid class. We will work together to create an environment that promotes collaborative learning and effective, thoughtful discussion. Student conduct codes at virtually all colleges ask students to respect the rights, privileges, and dignity of others in action and in speech. Class discussion directly relates to the success of papers through feedback and support. Class participation is evaluated based on the productivity, diplomacy, and relevance of discussion generated by each student. You will be asked to make substantive responses (100-150 words) to improve development of ideas. Classes like ours may cover provocative topics and issus, but they must be a safe place for a variety of opinions and points of view to be expressed. You will have the opportunity to work with many of your classmates in large and small peer groups, and you should establish a “buddy system” to help one another in an emergency.

Your success in this course is largely up to you; if you engage wholeheartedly in it, striving to reach beyond your current level of proficiency, the class will be a rewarding experience. If, for whatever reason, this class is not a priority for you, the self-initiated nature of this section will not work to your benefit, and you might consider enrolling at another time.

It is your responsibility to become familiar with the Blackboard site for our classroom, so please use the college’s numerous training resources available. There are many people on campus well-equipped to train you on Blackboard, but I lack both the time and resources to do so. I will post announcements and course materials on our Blackboard site so that deadlines, handouts, and other materials will be available to you 24/7. You will find many other helpful resources there as well. It is also your responsibility to keep track of due dates and instructions.

Procedural Basics


All papers should conform to MLA (Modern Language Association) format. Specifically, please use the following format for submitting written assignments unless instructed otherwise or unless you’re following specific genre or medium conventions:

  • Provide a basic header in the upper left hand corner of page 1:
    • Your name
    • Course section and number (e.g., HIST 240-01)
    • Instructor’s Name (spelled correctly - Oakes)
    • Date
  • Double-space the text.
  • Use one-inch margins.
  • Use a standard 12-point font (like Ariel or Times New Roman) or some equivalent.
  • Number all pages in the upper right hand corner starting with page 2.
  • Give assignments a title, centered just above the text and following the header.
  • Use a Works Cited page as needed.

Keep copies of all your work, as hard copy and in electronic format, in more than one location, such as your hard drive and a memory stick or in some type of online storage. Emailing your papers to yourself is a good safeguard against lost work.

Your papers will be submitted to a dropbox accessing Turnitin, the plagiarism-prevention software used by North Idaho College. Turnitin is used to detect plagiarized passages, and if any are found, I will contact you to make you aware of your options.

Use of Email

Last semester, I received over 700 student emails, 99% of which could have been answered by reading the course materials. If you read the Syllabus and class materials, keep up with announcements on Blackboard, read all posts, participate in peer reviews, and STILL have a question, then by all means, ask it. I will provide a weekly Questions and Concerns thread for you to post a question publicly, which may help others who have the same question. If your question is one you do not feel comfortable asking publicly, then go ahead and email me. I will try to be polite in responding to your email, but I may refer you to the Syllabus or course materials which you should have read.

Please do not ask me to give you information regarding your grade over email. Email is not a secure enough method of communicating confidential information such as grades. I have never worked in an academic setting that allowed grades to be communicated in that way. I provide scores and feedback on your papers. You will have plenty of information about your grade as the class progresses.

Also, do not submit your papers by email. If your paper is not submitted in the Blackboard Dropbox for that assignment when due, you will not earn credit for it. 





Institutional Policies

Center for Educational Access/Disability Support Services


In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and Section 504/508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973,NorthIdahoCollegeprovides accommodations to eligible students who experienced barriers in the educational setting due to learning, emotional/mental, physical, visual, or hearing disabilities. Instructors will provide accommodations to students only after having received a Letter of Accommodation from the Center for Educational Access.


If a student would like to request accommodations, he or she must contact the Center for Educational Access so that a Letter of Accommodation may be sent to the instructor. Students requesting accommodations must contact the Center for Educational Access at the beginning of each semester, 665-4520, or


Course Withdrawal Information


Instructor-Initiated Withdrawal, Course Withdrawal, and Tuition Payment Information:


The last day for students to withdraw from classes Fall Semester is November 12, 2012. Instructors have the right to withdraw students for academic reasons up until the same date; in doing so, instructors must notify students through NIC e-mail within 48 hours of submitting documentation to the Registrar’s office, and students have the right to appeal the instructor’s decision. For more information, see the NIC Procedure:


All withdrawals, whether for individual classes, total withdrawal from school, or instructor-initiated are not considered to be satisfactory progress for financial aid. See the Financial Aid Satisfactory Progress Policy:


For more information on withdrawals visit:


Course Incomplete Information


An incomplete is assigned only if the student has been in attendance and has done satisfactory work to within three weeks of the end of the semester (or proportional length of time for a course of less than a semester in length). Incompletes are issued only in cases of extenuating circumstances, such as severe illness or injury. Incompletes are not issued in cases in which the student is simply unable to complete his/her work within the specific semester or session. If a final grade of “I” is recorded, the instructor will indicate in writing to the Registrar what the student must do to make up the deficiency. The instructor will indicate in the written statement what permanent grade should be entered if the Incomplete is not removed by the deadline.


All Incomplete grades must be removed within six weeks after the first class day of the following term, excluding the summer session. If the Incomplete is not removed by that date, the grade reverts to the grade indicated by the instructor’s written statement authorizing the incomplete (page 34, NIC College Catalog 2009-2010).


Discrimination and Harassment Statement


NorthIdahoCollegehas a zero tolerance policy for any acts of discrimination or harassment of any kind. For more information, please see the Student Handbook, Code of Conduct Article III and Article VIII. Compliance efforts with respect to these laws and regulations are the responsibility of each member of the campus community and are under the direction of the Dean of Students Office for Student Issues (2nd Floor, ESU, 676-7156) and the Human Resources Office (ShermanAdministrationBuilding, 769-3304) for employee issues.