My Courses at Bethany
I teach courses in American history, history of science, and bioethics at Bethany Lutheran Colleges. Following are the syllabi and other class materials for several of my courses.
This course surveys the history of the United States from its Native American and European colonial roots through the Civil War and Reconstruction. Topics include the American Revolution, Westward Expansion, and the Sectional Crisis.
This course surveys the history of the United States from the late 19th century to the present day. Topics include the Indian Wars, Immigration, Progressive Era Reform, the Great Depression and New Deal, the World Wars, the Cold War, the Civil Rights Movement, and the War on Terrorism.
An in-depth exploration into the background, causes, war, and consequences of the American Revolution. Critical assessment of the historical interpretation of the era.
This course explores the development, ratification, and legacy of the U.S. Constitution from 1787 through the 1820s. In both primary and secondary documents, students will explore American life under the Constitution with special attention to questions of religion, race, gender, and individual rights.
This course examines the American Civil Rights Movement from 1954 to 1973. Topics include the Brown decision, the Montgomery bus boycotts, the student movement, the northern urban housing crisis, differing strategies within and between the black and white communities, the transformation of national political parties, the woman's liberation movement, affirmative action, and the relationship between religion and politics.
This course explores the role of religion, with particular emphasis on Christian denominations, in major developments of American history, such the American Revolution, nineteenth-century evangelicalism, the evolution of higher education, the Civil Rights Movement, and the rise of the Religious Right. Students will grapple with enduring questions concerning the relationship between church and state, the role of personal faith in civic activism, and the viability of theological commitment amid religious pluralism.
This course analyses the relations between the Supreme Court and the American people from the Constitutional era to the present day. Students will explore competing theories of jurisprudence as these have applied to the contested meanings of "equal protection of the Laws" in regard to religion, race, gender, and individual rights.
Students will develop skills in oral history, archival research, and historical writing, editing, and publishing by completing service-learning projects for the Evangelical Lutheran Synod Historical Society and presenting their work at the Society’s annual meeting. To develop sufficient background knowledge for those projects, students also will study the history of the Evangelical Lutheran Synod and explore several historical case studies in detail.
Through exposure to Western moral philosophies from antiquity through the postmodern era, students explore the foundations of ethical standards and judgments. These perspectives are then applied to the analysis of contemporary moral debates and ethical case studies.
This course examines the social and intellectual foundations of Western science from antiquity to the present. Students will evaluate scientific achievements in their respective historical, philosophical, cultural, and theological contexts, and compare previous scientific understandings to present ones.
Students will examine the ethical dimensions of contemporary science, including standards of professional research and principles of biomedical ethics. Informed by both theological and secular moral philosophies, students will explore how the meaning of the human person is challenged by current scientific trends.