More and more we are challenged by today’s learning environment – students are different, digital tools are evolving, and instructors are continually asked to do more with less yet show greater results. With the creation of Many Europes, Choice & Chance in Western Civilization, an entirely integrated program, we recognize this changing environment and set out with the goal of better meeting the western civilization course challenges of improving student performance, critical analysis skills, and overall comprehension in a continually evolving teaching and learning environment.
What does it mean – integrated program? Rather than a traditional narrative text that then has ancillary support material or supplements tacked onto it, Many Europes was constructed as a program. Each narrative section has clearly stated learning objectives that are tied to the digital tools which drive the program’s assessment. A key tool in driving knowledge is McGraw-Hill’s LearnSmart, an adaptive assessment tool, which has proven results of increasing student comprehension and overall course results. Yet, we realize that while history instructors want students to know basic historical facts, the actual goal of the course is improving student’s critical thinking abilities. Our Critical Missions develop analysis skills through the examination of maps, primary sources and the completion of a written argument. In addition, several other assignment types within McGraw-Hill’s Connect drive the development of analysis skills and are also tied directly to learning objectives.
What do we mean by Choice? Unique to this program, Many Europes discusses European history as a series of choices within a set of historical circumstances, driving greater critical analysis as students realize that Europe's fate was never inevitable but instead was created by individuals with diverse voices and perspectives. Choice also means flexibility. Many Europes’ flexible content including a customizable documents collection available as print or digital as well as many user options from a completely digital experience to a hybrid print and digital experience, or if you must, an all print experience.
What do we mean by Chance? In history chance shows itself as a dropped letter, an unexpected storm, or surprise turn of events. Chance can also show itself as a new way, path, or direction that allows for the anticipation and expectation of something better. Many Europes’ flexible content coupled with powerful digital learning tools and a customizable documents collection gives users an innovative choice for the teaching and learning of Western Civilization as well as a better chance for improved student results and course outcomes.
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Paul Edward Dutton is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and of The Medieval Academy of America, and the Jack and Nancy Farley University Professor in History at Simon Fraser University. He holds a Ph.D. from the University of Toronto and a doctorate in medieval studies from the Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies (P.I.M.S.). Among his books are The Politics of Dreaming in the Carolingian Empire, Charlemagne's Mustache and Other Cultural Clusters of A Dark Age, The Poetry and Paintings of the First Bible of Charles the Bald (with Herbert Kessler), and The Autograph of Eriugena (with Edouard Jeauneau). He is the general editor of three series of medieval studies at the University of Toronto Press and the critical editor of two Latin texts from the twelfth century.
Suzanne Marchand obtained her BA from UC Berkeley (1984) and her MA and Ph.D. from the University of Chicago (1986; 1992). She then taught for several years at Princeton (1991-99), where she received tenure. In 1999, she moved to LSU in Baton Rouge where she is Professor of Modern European Intellectual History. Her specialties are Modern German and Austrian Intellectual History, the history of classical scholarship, the history of cultural institutions (museums, universities, etc), the history of archaeology, and the history of aesthetic thought. She has published two books, Down from Olympus: Archaeology and Philhellenism in Germany (Princeton University Press, 1996), and German Orientalism in the Age of Empire: Religion, Race and Scholarship (Cambridge University Press, 2009). She has also coauthored an innovative and successful textbook on world history (Worlds Together, Worlds Apart, published by W. W. Norton), edited two volumes of essays (Proof and Persuasion: Essays on Authority, Objectivity, and Evidence, with Elizabeth Lunbeck; and Germany at the Fin de Siecle, with David Lindenfeld), and written numerous other shorter pieces. She has two children, Charles (14) and Henry (11); her husband, Victor Stater, is an historian of early modern Britain, and chair of the history department at LSU.
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