Materials Contributed through SERC-hosted Projects
Critique an Historical Argument part of State Your Case:Activities
In this introductory-level "Evaluate an Historical Argument" assignment, students use a rubric provided by the instructor to assess the quality of a class peer's original 4-5 page historical position paper. In addition to the completed rubric, the student writes up a narrative report explaining the rationale underpinning the formal assessment. All student work is assessed by the instructor using the rubric. After papers are returned, students then meet with their peer evaluator and discuss both the peer and instructor evaluations. This activity allows students to recognize the major elements of a good historical argument, (1) a clear thesis, (2) appropriate evidence, (2) logical reasoning, (3) proper citation, (4) clear and appropriate conclusions, (5) the ability to analyze an argument presented by someone else in relation to these elements, and (6) the ability to self-critique and to present an argument of one's own that reflects these elements.