US History—Semester B
Reconstructing reconstruction...till the present.
Half a score and some odd years ago, our Shmoopfathers brought forth on these interwebs, a new website, conceived in hilarity, and dedicated to the proposition that learning and laughing go better together. And then, they made history—a US History course, that is. Now you can get a good belly laugh as you learn everything from how Columbus’s voyage brought us pizza as we know it today to how a Gecko defined the eighties (nope, it has nothing to do with insurance). Join Shmoop’s US History course and:
- watch the sparks fly in a culture clash between Spanish sailors and Powhatan natives—by reading a comic book.
- claim your title as America’s Next Top Trader by bartering furs for food as a British mercantilist.
- create a Superbowl-worthy advertisement for the inventions of Thomas Edison, a.k.a. the Steve Jobs of yesteryear.
- scrapbook your way through a journey as a Dust Bowl migrant. Grime-fighting wet towelettes highly recommended.
See, unless you’re getting really in depth about how they made the White House white, studying US History doesn’t have to be like watching paint dry. So take a journey back in time with Shmoop and find out what makes our country unique, how it got that way, and what all of this has to do with you.
This semester covers the period of Reconstruction through the 1980s. That's about 160 years and lots of foreign policy angst.
P.S. US History is a two-semester course. You're looking at Semester B, but you can check out Semester A here.
- Microsoft Office, Google Docs, or another word processing program
- A scanner (or access to one)
- A camera (a camera phone is sufficient)
- All other work can be done via the Shmoop website.
The ability to read and understand primary sources
Unit 8. Reconstruction and the Wild, Wild West
While the Reconstruction of the nation post-Civil War was happening, the west was going wild. The Gold Rush, the Transatlantic Railroad, the arrival of immigrants from Asia. This unit covers these big changes.
Unit 9. The Gilded Age: A Shower of Invention and Industry
Progress! Industry! Invention! New technology! The Gilded Age was one of the most dynamic, contentious, and volatile periods in American history. You'll learn about the captains of industry, robber barons, and the Steve Jobs of yesteryear here.
Unit 10. Tainting the Melting Pot: The Era of Jim Crow and Immigration
Haven't you heard? America is a nation of immigrants. Immigrants have never had it easy in the United States, though. In this unit, you'll get cozy with the experiences of those seeking the American dream.
Unit 11. Empires on the Rise, Progress on the March, Racism Still Around
In this unit, America fixes some internal problems and bursts out of its isolationist bubble onto the international scene. Spanish-American War, anyone? Anyone?
Unit 12. Soldiers and Flappers
A Gatsby—U.S. History crossover? Yes, please! This unit takes us from the trenches of World War I straight into the Roaring '20s, with a stop in Harlem in between.
Unit 13. The Great Depression: The Roaring Twenties' Decade-long Hangover
We're not gonna lie. The Great Depression was really depressing. This unit will take us through the causes of this economic crisis and through the attempted reforms of Hoover and FDR.
Unit 14. World Wars: Episode 2: The U.S. Strikes Back
And now for the war that inspired all good war movies: World War II. In this unit, you'll get the deets on the Pacific theater, the European theater, and everything in between.
Unit 15. Out of the Frying Pan, Into the Cold War
This unit is all about passive-aggressive action against Communism (i.e., "don't piss them off or they'll bomb us off the face of the earth."). McCarthyism, the Red Scare, conformity, Eisenhower, the Marshall Plan. Good stuff.
Unit 16. Peace, Love, and Atomic Missiles
We didn't start the fire; we're just telling you about it. In this unit, you'll learn all about the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Civil Rights Movement, and the chaos that was the Vietnam War.
Unit 17. Reagan vs. the Wall
What do you get when you combine Reagan, Gorbachev, and Wall Street? Shmoop's unit on the '80s, of course.
- Course Length: 18 weeks
- Course Number: 310
- Grade Levels: 10, 11
- Course Type: Basic
- Category: Social Sciences
US History—Semester A
Just what the heck is a ShMOOC?
Common Core Standards
The following standards are covered in this course: