missing image


Quick Links

Course Materials

What You Should Already Know

This course deals with U.S. history from the late 1800s to the 1920s. Though there are no prerequisites in terms of the course, it is helpful to have a general background in United States history before this time period.

Learning Outcomes

When you complete this course, you should be able to do the following:

  1. Describe historical events that led to the development of America, its people, and its government.
  2. Describe history from a variety of viewpoints.
  3. Use skills that will help you in other areas of your education and life.

Course Materials

The units contain all of the material that you will need to successfully complete the course. However, an atlas will be helpful as we refer to places around the world and in the United States. There are additional helps in the course resources folder such as an appendix and a course wiki..

(Back to top)


There are seven units in this course. Before you begin, read through the Portfolio Assignment after Unit 7 and think about what project you might want to complete for this course. You will want to be thinking about this while you work through your course. Units 1 through 7 are set up to follow each other, so try to go in order.

Although the units are in chronological order, please read Appendix A first; it will familiarize you with many of the terms that are used throughout the course.

Pay close attention to the “What Do You Think?” questions. They are designed to analyze the information that has been presented. Although these questions are not graded, they are also helpful to study for the Sunit quizzes and final exam.

Unit Quizzes

Each unit contains a computer-graded unit quiz. To study for the unit quiz, and the final exam, go back and make sure that you understand all of the big ideas in the “What Do You Think?” questions. Unit quizzes do count toward your grade, so you should do your best on them.

Portfolio Assignment

Your course project will be submitted as an instructor-graded portfolio assignment. See the instructions in the Portfolio Assignment folder for submission details.

(Back to top)


The practice exam is only worth 2 percent of your grade so that you will take the opportunity to see how well prepared you are for the actual final exam. If you do well on the practice exam without using any notes or books or other resources, you should be ready for the final exam.

The final exam has 50 multiple-choice questions and is closed book and closed notes. Review the “What Do You Think?” questions, unit quizzes, and practice exam to study for the final. There is a time limit of one hour.

(Back to top)


The following chart shows the grading weights for the entire course.

Assignment Percentage
Unit 1 Quiz 8%
Unit 2 Quiz 8%
Unit 3 Quiz 8%
Unit 4 Quiz 8%
Unit 5 Quiz 8%
Unit 6 Quiz 8%
Unit 7 Quiz 8%
Portfolio Assignment 12%
Practice Exam 2%
Final Exam (Comprehensive) 30%
Grading Scale
A 100–93
A- 92–90
B+ 89–87
B 86–83
B- 82–80
C+ 79–77
C 76–73
C- 72–70
D+ 69–67
D 66–63
D- 62–60
E (fail) 59–0

(Back to top)

Copyright Notice

The materials used in connection with this online course are only for the use of students enrolled in this course for purposes associated with this course and may not be retained or further disseminated. Any copying or further dissemination of these materials may be subject to applicable U.S. Copyright Laws. For questions or more information, please visit the BYU Copyright Licensing Office website.

“Members of the BYU community who willfully disregard this Copyright Policy or the BYU Copyright Guidelines place themselves individually at risk of legal action and may incur personal liability for their conduct. The unauthorized use or distribution of copyrighted material, including unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing, may subject individuals to civil and criminal liabilities, including actual and statutory damages, costs and fees of litigation, fines, and imprisonment

Violations of the Copyright Policy may result in university disciplinary action including termination of university enrollment or employment.” (Emphasis added. Excerpt taken from the BYU Copyright Policy)

(Back to top)

Accessibility Notice

BYU is committed to providing a working and learning atmosphere which reasonably accommodates persons with disabilities who are otherwise qualified to participate in BYU's programs and activities. In this spirit, BYU Independent Study aspires to improve web accessibility for users. While not required by law, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Levels A and AA provide a wide range of helpful recommendations to make Web content more accessible. BYU Independent Study strives to apply WCAG 2.0 recommendations where feasible, but may deviate from any recommendations that would result in an undue hardship to BYU Independent Study or alterations to program and course content and objectives. If you have questions about accessibility, or if you need to report problems with any accessibility features please see our Accessibilities and Accommodations Web Page.

(Back to top)

Copyright © 2012 Brigham Young University. All rights reserved.
Published by the
Department of Independent Study
Division of Continuing Education
Brigham Young University
120 MORC
Provo, Utah 84602-1514

Course Policies

These policies are specific to this course. For additional information about general policies, please refer to Independent Study Course Policies page.


8 computer-graded assignments, may be resubmitted once for a fee; 1 instructor-graded course project submission, must pass with at least a 60 percent in order to pass this course, may be resubmitted once for a fee


1 proctored, computer-graded exam, may retake once for a fee, must pass with at least a 60 percent in order to pass the course

Course Duration

You have 1 year to complete this course, but if you need more than a year, you may purchase one 3-month extension. Because of the nature of some assignments, you will not be able to complete this course in less than 2 months.

Getting Help

Please use the help menu in this course to contact Independent Study or your instructor.

You can find a list of free tutors available to BYU Independent Study students on the Free Tutoring Services website.

University Policy - Title IX Statement

Preventing & Responding to Sexual Misconduct

In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Brigham Young University prohibits unlawful sex discrimination against any participant in its education programs or activities. The university also prohibits sexual harassment—including sexual violence—committed by or against students, university employees, and visitors to campus. As outlined in university policy, sexual harassment, dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking are considered forms of "Sexual Misconduct" prohibited by the university.

University policy requires all university employees in a teaching, managerial, or supervisory role to report all incidents of Sexual Misconduct that come to their attention in any way, including but not limited to face-to-face conversations, a written class assignment or paper, class discussion, email, text, or social media post. Incidents of Sexual Misconduct should be reported to the Title IX Coordinator at t9coordinator@byu.edu or (801) 422-8692. Reports may also be submitted through EthicsPoint at https://titleix.byu.edu/report or 1-888-238-1062 (24-hours a day).

BYU offers confidential resources for those affected by Sexual Misconduct, including the university’s Victim Advocate, as well as a number of non-confidential resources and services that may be helpful. Additional information about Title IX, the university’s Sexual Misconduct Policy, reporting requirements, and resources can be found at http://titleix.byu.edu or by contacting the university’s Title IX Coordinator.

(Back to top)