• A Hartwick professor helping a student during class.
  • Hartwick students giving a presentation in front of the class.
  • A Hartwick professor discussing Botany with a student.
  • A Hartwick student using a microscope in the science lab.

U.S. Pluralism Courses

Course Instruction
The Associate Dean & Director of the Office of Intercultural Affairs & The U.S. Pluralism Center teaches courses within the Department of History twice a year.  In addition, co-curricular certificate programs are offered in family research and leadership development.

HIST 270 Revisiting Roots: The Fight to End Slavery in England,  British West Indies, and the United States
Family Research 100: Validating the Research Trail In Family Research
Harriet Tubman Mentoring Project

HIST 270 Revisiting Roots: The Fight to End Slavery in England, British West Indies, and the United States (SBA, 3 credits)
Course Objective
The primary objective of this course, combining historiography and genealogy, is to expose the similarities and differences in the portrayal of the slavery system and its impact upon the family structure of the enslaved Africans and their descendants in Great Britain, the British West Indies, and the United States. This is done critiquing requiring readings, analyzing an American television series, class discussions, and research labs, including off-campus visits.

Course Organization
Each student will explore:

  • the impact upon African societies through the ending of slavery in the British colonies in 1833;
  • the American Abolitionist Movement through the Civil War;
  • family research techniques. As a class, students will critique the American film Roots.

Students will be responsible for identifying the film's similarities and differences with written sources and exhibits in the presentation of various aspects of the slavery period. Further, students will be required to use secondary and primary materials to produce their own group story of the Freedom Journey.

Course Requirements
Each student will be required to keep a journal, including a daily critique of all required activities, research lab activities, and lectures. The journal will be turned in periodically during the semester and evaluated. Each student will be expected to participate regularly in the review of case studies and group research projects. Each student will write an 8-10 page paper that explores the life condition of her or his adopted African. A student's final grade for this course will be determined in the following manner:

Family Research 100: Validating the Research Trail In Family Research
Research Lab Objective
The primary objective of this research lab, combining historiography and genealogy, is to expose the aspiring research-scholar to the elementary cautions and some fast-track procedures  useful to an investigator determining  fact from rumor and/or fiction.  More specifically, the research lab will introduce students to research methodology and afford them an opportunity to work with primary documents and other sources, and to develop a strategy for ascertaining the validity of their research.  This is a co-curricular certificate course. 

Research Lab Organization
The research lab will operate with the expectation that each student will identify a project for research that focuses upon family or community history. In this regard, each student will participate in a research session to acquire materials that will be helpful to the project. In the process, each student will be exposed to 1) how to identify clues that are useful in forming a thesis; 2) how to track down facts that are not easily accessible; and 3) how to present a final product that combines historiography and genealogy.

Research Lab Schedule
Week One:

  • Introduction to genealogical resources and process
  • Introduction to historiography
  • Sharing a  family's genealogy,  including oral  history
  • Completing Soundex Codes
  • Beginning family shield

Week Two:

  • Completing chronology of known family history
  • Completing a description of a local history item
  • Identifying relatives in 1930 and earlier
  • Reviewing 1880 Census Index

Week Three:

  • Research Lab
  • Searching for supporting texts and studies
  • Reviewing pre-1880 sources
  • Group sharing

Week Four:

  • Sharing personal essays on family or local history research project
  • Preparing strategy for continuing research

Harriet Tubman Mentoring Project
Students participating in the Harriet Tubman Project receive a certificate of completion.  For more information about the Harriet Tubman Mentoring Project, visit the project Web page.