Primary Documents are historical artifacts that allow later generations to understand the experiences of people who lived during various historical times. Primary documents represent evidence. However, they are not exclusive to all who lived during a time period. They provide individual insight that a general textbook may not provide.
What Is A Primary Source?
Students will be asked to read two primary sources per chapter from the supplemental primary reader American Yawp that will be selected by the instructor and listed under the link for each of the assignments. Students will be expected to address questions about the documents. The questions will be consistent each week. However, students will need to thoroughly address the questions based on reading the documents. The answers to the questions will determine students understanding of the content. Students will receive a zero for work that is copy and pasted, plagiarized, as well as shared with classmates, or other students. Each chapter primary document analysis exercise is worth 10 points. There are 17 chapters for which students will be expected to complete the document analysis. With the points for each of the document analyses compiled, students can earn a total of 170 points for this assignment by the close of the term. Given that students can earn over 100 points for completing all 17 primary source analyses, it offers the opportunity for students to earn extra credit and/or miss a few without their overall grades suffering.
Below are the questions that students must address in complete sentence format for each of the primary sources. Please understand that when this assignment is completed that the two primary sources are being addressed for the first six questions. For the remaining questions, the two sources are being compared. Please note under each question being addressed (for the first six answers) which source is being addressed.
1. Content- What is the main idea? Describe in detail the main points offered. This answer should include points in multiple sentences. Former students have copied content from the introduction of the documents or gave one sentence answers that did not display a reading of the actual primary source. Please be mindful not to make those mistakes.
2. Citation- When was this created? Do not use the date from the source given after the document. A number of documents were selected from secondary and tertiary sources.
3. Context- What is going on in the world, the country, the region, or the locality when this was created? (Please read the main textbook first in order to understand what is happening at this time. Please note the timeframe that is relevant to the writing of this document. Events that contributed to this document should be noted. For example, if this is a reaction to a historic event, then that should be noted.)
4. Who is the author or creator? (Sometimes, the speaker is not the physical writer but is being interviewed. Please note the voice of the persons speaking in the source and who may have contributed to the creation of the work. Please do not confuse the source provided after the document as the actual author. Some of the documents were taken from secondary and tertiary sources.)
5. What biases or assumptions may have influenced the author or creator?
6. Who was the intended audience?
*Half-points will be deducted for missed questions. One-quarter to one half of a point will be deducted for grammar errors, depending on the number.
Please provide answers to all of the first six questions for both documents.
7. Are there similarities in the selected documents point of view?
8. What are the similarities?
9. Are the authors offering counterpoints to one another?
10. In what ways do they disagree?
Original Answer 10-7 points -All of the required questions were correctly addressed for both sources with detail and displayed college level grammar with minimal to no errors.
6-4 points-Some of the questions were addressed but some information was missed. There may have been incorrect information provided or a misunderstanding of the content displayed. There were major errors in grammar or spelling.
3-1 points- The content barely addressed the questions and/or the answers were unclear. The work displayed poor grammar or spelling
0 points-The work contained poor grammar or spelling that could not be understood, used material from outside sources (other than the main textbook or document), contained plagiarized content (taken directly from the document), appeared to be identical to the work of another student, and/or contained off topic answers that did not display an understanding of the content.
Work that does not offer detailed explanations of the material will suffer a loss in points.
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