HIS332 World War II

for S2T 2011

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HIS 332 World War II


S2T 2011 DLA


Watras, Kenneth A.


Adjunct Professor


M.A., Military History, Norwich University
M.A., International Relations, Boston University

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  • John Keegan's The Second World War (ISBN: 9780143035732), and
  • Robert H. Abzug's America Views the Holocaust (ISBN: 0312133936)

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

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Course Description:
HIS 332 World War II: MLL - This seminar studies World War IIs causes and course, the Holocaust, military technology, the home and fighting fronts, and the post-war reconstruction. The seminar examines the experience of combatants and non-combatants in the wars two major theaters as well as the experience of occupation and resistance. The seminar shall comprise and inquiry of period literature. (European/Classical Concentration) Offered as required. 3:0:3

Educational Philosophy:

Course material is presented utilizing a variety of methods including lectures, required readings, discussion, and multimedia. Students are evaluated based on competency standards and demonstrated improvement in written assignments, discussion, and exams.

Class Assessment:

  • Discussion of the readings (due each Week): 120 points
  • Assignment A (due in Week 3) over : 25 points
  • Midterm Exam (due in Week 4): 100 points
  • Assignment B (due in Week 5) over : 25 points
  • Holocaust Paper (due in Week 6): 100 points
  • Map Quiz (due in Week 7): 30 points 
  • Proctored Final Exam (due in Week 8) : 100 points
  • Total Points for Term: 500 points


Each student is responsible for completing:

  • Discussion of the readings (due each Week): 120 points
  • Assignment A (due in Week 3) over : 25 points
  • Midterm Exam (due in Week 4): 100 points
  • Assignment B (due in Week 5) over : 25 points
  • Holocaust Paper (due in Week 6): 100 points
  • Map Quiz (due in Week 7): 30 points 
  • Proctored Final Exam (due in Week 8) : 100 points
  • Total Points for Term: 500 points
Weekly Discussions: Your comments in discussion should be written in your own words. To support your comments you may use brief quotations from our textbooks or other scholarly sources; however, you must properly document all borrowed material. If you cite our textbooks, a parenthetical citation with the author's name and page number is sufficient. If you use an outside source, please provide a full citation. If you use a quotation from any source, you must use quotation marks. There are three discussion topics each week, worth 5-points each, for a total of 15 discussion points. During the weeks in which you have major assignments, the discussion is reduced to two topics worth 7.5 points each, and a modified rubric is posted on that week's discussion page.
Discussion Grading Rubric: Early in the week, post your main response to the question in each discussion topic, your responses will be graded on the following criteria:

Length: minimum of 100 words on the initial discussion; 25 words on each response post comment: ½ point

Conventions (grammar/punctuation/spelling/and citation if needed): ½ point

Content (relevant to the discussion question): 2 points

Peer Responses: in each topic, post two (2) separate Peer Responses consisting of thoughtful and detailed comments: 1 point each

Total Possible on each week's discussion: 15 points (5 points for each topic)

Writing Assignments A & B: There are two brief writing assignments for this course, worth 25 points each. You are to write your responses [in your own words] to the assigned questions in a Word or Rich Text File (.rtf) document. Once completed, you will need to submit your assignments via the appropriate Drop Box. Assignments are due by Midnight, Central Time, on the last day (Sunday) of the week they are assigned.

Assignment Grading Rubric: Your responses to each assignment must be written in proper essay format [introduction, support paragraphs, conclusion]. See the webliography for helpful essay-writing web sites. Each paragraph must have a topic or introduction sentence, be well supported, and include a conclusion sentence. Your work must be written in your own words. 

Content: 20 points total

   Fully respond to all questions of the assignment. Responses are accurate, and well supported

Writing Mechanics: 5 points total

   Grammar, Punctuation, Spelling, and Format. Responses are written in your own words. Brief quotations (if used) are clearly noted, and full citations are provided

Total Possible on each Assignment: 25 points

Holocaust Paper: The paper (the Core Assessment historical essay) will respond to the readings in America Views the Holocaust, 1933-1945, by Robert H. Abzug. Your paper will address both of these writing points:

  1. Explain how these primary sources have altered your thoughts about America's relations to the Holocaust. [provide a few specific examples] 
  2. Given the sources in this collection, explain why many Americans, when confronted with the newsreels and pictures of the liberated camps, still claimed not to have been aware of the Nazis' genocide.
Paper Guidelines:
  • The paper is due at the end of Week 6
  • Double-spaced, font size of 10-12, Times New Roman typeset
  • Citations in proper Chicago Style (for History Majors, non-History major can use MLA Style if desired)
  • Use margins of one-inch on all four sides
  • Contain a proper Chicago Style header (for History Majors, non-History major can use MLA Style if desired), and page header with numbered pages
  • Length: approximate 4-6 pages (1000-1500 words)
  • Include an introduction paragraph with a clear statement of thesis or purpose, and a conclusion paragraph that reiterates your key points
  • Papers will be evaluated for content (evidence and argument) and style of presentation; proofread!
  • The students is held responsible for fully understanding what constitutes plagiarism and Park University's and the instructor's regulations regarding consequences of plagiarism detection and fabrication 
Grading Criteria for the Paper:
Statement of Thesis (10 points): 
Introduction with clear statement(s) of thesis/purpose that address assigned topics

Your Evaluation
(65 points):
  1. Explain how these primary sources have altered your thoughts about America's relations to the Holocaust. [provide a few specific examples]
  2. Given the sources in this collection, explain why many Americans, when confronted with the newsreels and pictures of the liberated camps, still claimed not to have been aware of the Nazis' genocide

Conclusion (10 points):
Restates key points and summarizes your conclusions.

Writing Mechanics
(15 points):
Grammar, Punctuation & Spelling, Length, Paper Format, Chicago Style for History Majors. Non-history majors may use MLA if they so choose.
Total Possible: 100 points

Midterm Exam: The midterm exam will be administered during week 4 and will be worth 100 points. This exam will cover materials from Weeks 1-4.  It will include short answer identification and essay questions. While the exam is open-book, you will have a 1.5-hour time limit! A missed midterm can only be made up if I receive notice ahead of time that you will miss it.

Map Quiz:  This is a map-identification quiz. You will have 30-minutes to correctly identify the locations of 15 important events in the European and Pacific theaters. You may use your textbooks to assist you; however, like with the midterm exam, your time to complete the exam is limited. 

Proctored Final Exam: The proctored final exam will be comprehensive and will be worth 100 points. It will be a two-hour, closed-note, closed-book exam. It will include short answer and essay questions. This exam will cover material from Weeks 1-8. For proctored examinations, photo identification is required at the time of the test. You will also need to check with your proctor to see if they will need for you to bring paper to the exam since this is a short answer and essay exam. Guidelines for selecting an acceptable proctor can be found on the Park University Website.

Other Information on proctored exams:
  • It will be the responsibility of the student to arrange for a proctor by the 6th week of the term.
  • Approval of proctors is at the discretion of the Online instructor.
  • A proctor request form will be made available to you during the first week of class so that you can submit your requested proctor to your instructor for approval via the automated system.
  • Failure to take a final proctored exam will result in an automatic "F" grade for the course.


Grading Philosophy:

  • A is exceptional and an uncommon achievement.
  • B is above the average performance of a 1st or 2nd year college student and is earned by exceeding the standard.
  • C is the average expected of a 1st or 2nd year student and is earned by meeting the standard.
  • D is below average and marginally meets the course standard.
  • F is obviously failing to meet the course standard.

 Course Grading Scale:

  • A = 90 - 100% (or 450 to 500 points)
  • B = 80 - 89% (or 400 to 449 points)
  • C = 70 - 79% (or 350 to 399 points)
  • D = 60 - 69% (or 300 to 349 points)
  • F = < 60% (299 or fewer points)

Late Submission of Course Materials:

All work is due on the due date. If you will miss work and need to submit late (for TDY or emergency), make arrangements with the instructor ahead of time. Late work will penalized 10 percent per day late unless prior arrangements have been made.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

The fundamental objective of this course is to learn. That means we must all work together and learn from each other. In order to accomplish this, we must treat each other with respect. Everyone will have the opportunity and freedom to express their ideas. Be sure to review the Park Student Code of Conduct.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:




·         See each weekly unit home page for more specific discussion of weekly assignments and topics.

·         All assignments, the map quiz, and the exams are due by midnight (Central) on Sunday of the week in which they are assigned.

Week 1

Prologue, Prelude to the War

  • Lecture
  • Readings
    • Keegan: p.10-53
    •  Abzug: preface & introduction
  • Discussion

Week 2

The War in the West, (1940-1943)

  • Lecture
  • Readings:
    • Keegan: p.54-126;
    • Abzug: p.4-49
  • Discussion

Week 3

The War in the East, (1941-1943)

  • Lecture
  • Readings:
    • Keegan: p.127-239;
    • Abzug: p.51-108
  • Assignment A
  • Discussion

Week 4

The War in the Pacific, (1941-1943)

  • Lecture
  • Readings:
    • Keegan: p.240-309;
    • Abzug: p.109-178.
  • Discussion
  • Midterm Exam

Week 5

The War in the West, (1943-1945)

  • Lecture
  • Readings:
    • Keegan: p.310-449;
    • Abzug: p.179-217
  • Assignment B
  • Discussion

Week 6

The War in the East, (1943-1945)

  • Lecture
  • Readings:
    •  Keegan: p.450-535
  • Holocaust Essay
  • Discussion

Week 7

The War in the Pacific, (1943-1945)

  • Lecture
  • Readings:
    • Keegan: p.536-587
  • Discussion
  • Map Quiz

Week 8

The Legacy of the Second World War

  • Lecture
  • Readings:
    • Keegan: p.588-595
  • Discussion
  • Proctored Final Exam

Academic Honesty:
Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life. Park University students and faculty members are encouraged to take advantage of the University resources available for learning about academic honesty (www.park.edu/current or http://www.park.edu/faculty/).from Park University 2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog Page 92

Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. from Park University 2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog Page 92-93

Attendance Policy:
Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  3. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "F".
  4. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  5. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  6. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.
ONLINE NOTE: An attendance report of "P" (present) will be recorded for students who have logged in to the Online classroom at least once during each week of the term. Recording of attendance is not equivalent to participation. Participation grades will be assigned by each instructor according to the criteria in the Grading Policy section of the syllabus.

Park University 2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog Page 95-96

Disability Guidelines:
Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: http://www.park.edu/disability .


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Last Updated:2/21/2011 10:15:06 AM