logo Instructions for Assignments in
HIS 312 African History Since 1875

Spring 2015
(MW 3-4:15pm, 307 Recitation Hall)

What's New?

Mar. 20: Extended the due date for the final draft of Hamman Yaji paper to Wed. Mar. 25
NOTE: These instructions are located at
http://courses.wcupa.edu/jones/his312/misc312assign.htm.
Go to the course syllabus

Date Assignment Possible points
Wed. Feb. 11 First examination [Click here for details.] 15
Mon. Mar. 16 First draft of Hamman Yaji research paper [details] 10
Wed. Mar. 25 Final draft of Hamman Yaji research paper. [details] 10
Mon. Apr. 6 Second examination [details] 20
Wed. Apr. 29 Paper on globalization's impact [details] 10
Wed. May 5-8 Third examination [details] (Exact date/time to be announced) 25
All semester Class participation [details] 10

 


 

ESSAY EXAMINATIONS: There are three essay examinations worth 15%, 20% and 25% of your final grade respectively. Although none of them are cumulative (i.e. each exam covers one part of the course and the third exam is not a "final exam"), they will assume that you have not forgotten what you learned in earlier parts of the course. Each examination offers a choice between two broad questions whose answers require you to connect concepts and examples from lectures, readings and presentations. You chose one question and write your answer, using a blue or black ink pen that you bring to the examination, in a "blue book" provided by the professor.

For example: "How would you describe the impact of the two world wars on European colonies in Africa?" An answer to this question could include any of these ideas:

To score well on the examination, you not only need to describe a large number of ideas, but you also need to provide an example to show that each idea was actually true, and present your ideas in a logical order. For example, using the above list, the last idea should come before the first idea because it describes the motivation for Africans to work with European colonizers, while the first idea shows that the relationship could benefit Europeans as well. An example that ties both ideas together is that of Leopold Senghor, a Senegalese veteran who became the country's first president and one of the few African leaders who supported France's position (under President De Gaulle) in the Algerian independence war.

Preparation for and attendance at examinations is crucial. The dates of the examinations appear on this page and on the syllabus -- mark them on your calendar as soon as you read this. If you miss one of them, but can produce a valid excuse you will be permitted to make it up at your professor's convenience, but if you can not produce a valid excuse, you will receive a zero (0) for that examination.

Go to the course syllabus

 


 

RESEARCH PAPER FIRST DRAFT: In the second part of the semester, you will read a diary written by a local African leader named Hamman Yaji during the period when Europeans took over his territory. The diary covers a wide variety of topics, and this assignment requires you to look for diary entries on a specific topic, use other sources to determine what they mean, figure out the ways in which the topic was important Hamman Yaji during this time period, and write a paper that explains what you discovered. Use the following table to determine your assigned topic.

If your WCU ID# ends with Your TOPIC is
1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 What pattern(s) can you identify in Hamman Yaji's raids -- over time, in terms of booty taken, nature of the European administration, other characteristics that you identify?
6 or 7 Like everyone else, Hamman Yaji had a personal code of ethics. Describe it. What did he consider to be "right" and "wrong"? What did he respect? What did he criticize?
8 or 9 Describe the impact of automobiles on Hamman Yaji’s world.

In general, you should do the following: Start by reading chapters 1-4 and 6 in the Vaughan & Kirk-Greene textbook. After you have received your topic, read Hamman Yaji's diary in chapter 5 of the Vaughn & Kirk-Greene textbook (or at www.sukur.info/Mont/HammanYaji%20DIARY.pdf) and look for entries containing words related to your topic. For instance, if your topic was "religion" you would look for words like religion, Islam and mosque as you read, but you should also look for words like imam, malam, Christian, Koran, pray and so on. Keep in mind that the results will not be predictable (for instance, the word religion does not appear in his diary), but as you read more of the diary, you will get more ideas for relevant words. Do not leave this step until the last minute.

Take notes as you go along (date of diary entry and what it says about your topic) and then use the rest of the chapters in the Vaughan & Kirk-Greene textbook, plus the secondary sources listed below to figure out the role that your assigned topic played in Hamman Yaji's life. Write as many drafts of your paper as you need to organize your thoughts and then compose a "first draft" to turn in for credit.

Your first draft should show that you have read the diary, found all entries that relate to your topic, completed reading the Vaughan & Kirk-Greene textbook, and found additional information in the secondary sources. It will include your explanation of the importance of your assigned topic to Hamman Yaji as he faced the increasing intrusions of Europeans. You may submit your draft research paper by email or on paper -- it is your choice. If you chose to submit it on paper, you must place it in my hands prior to the start of class at 3pm on the day it is due (see above). If you prefer to submit it as an email attachment, save it as a Word (.doc or .docx) or Acrobat (.pdf) file and attach it to an email prior to 2pm on the day it is due. The following grading rubric shows exactly what is expected:

GRADING RUBRIC (1st draft)

PERCENT CRITERIA
20 Your analysis shows that you read and understood Hamman Yaji's diary.
20 Your analysis shows that you consulted, understood and made use of the rest of the Vaughan textbook and additional primary and/or secondary sources.
30 Your paper contains a clear statement about the importance of your topic to Hamman Yaji.
10 Your paper includes reference notes for all of your data.
10 Your paper is written using complete sentences organized in logical paragraphs (except for data from tables or quoted material).
10 Your draft paper contains 1,200 to 2,000 words. If you submit it on paper, it is typewritten on standard white paper (8.5x11) with 1-inch margins and a common 14-point font (Courier, Times Roman, Helvetica or Arial are acceptable). If you submit it as an email attachment, it is formatted as a Word (.doc or .docx) or Acrobat (.pdf) file. Other formats may be acceptable, but only if you arrange it ahead of time with your professor.
-50 Your paper fails to address your assigned topic.
-10 Your assignment is less than 1 hour late (emailed papers due before 2pm; hard copies due before the start of class).
-100 Your assignment is 1 or more hours late.

For example, if you are assigned the topic of religion and its importance to Hamman Yaji, you might observe that religion was the most important thing in his life, since on November 6, 1920, he told his son "There are three things for you to look after - the mosque, your dress and your food." You should also observe that religion provided the basis for his political alliance with Hausa authorities, separated him and his people from the pagans on whom he preyed, and assured the qualification of his most trusted employees. (NOTE: This is not a complete list -- there are many more ideas suggested by the diary -- but it is intended to provide an example of the kind of analysis you should do for this assignment.)

SECONDARY SOURCES

OTHER SOURCES

Go to the course syllabus

 


 

FINAL RESEARCH PAPER: This assignment requires you to improve on your draft research paper by revising your argument about your topic's significance to Hamman Yaji, correcting all writing errors, and providing well-formated scholarly reference notes for all of your sources.

IMPROVING YOUR ARGUMENT

Consider what other people working on the same topic said during the class discussion of the first drafts. Then look at your own argument(s) and see if the logic holds up. One technique is to let a few days go by without looking at your draft, then reread it and outline it just like you would with any other assigned reading. After that, reread your outline and see if the items are arranged in a logical order and the connection from one item to the next makes sense.

Another technique is to have someone read it who is not familiar with your topic and see if they can understand what you have written. The people who work in the WCU Writing Center are equipped to do this, as long as you make an appointment far enough in advance. Resist the urge to read a paper by another member of our class who is working on the same topic, and refrain from asking such a person to read your paper because, unless you are very careful, you run the risk of plagiarism which includes, but is not limited to, copying another person's work without providing attribution, or presenting another person's ideas as your own. Otherwise you may discuss this assignment with other members of our class and use any of the sources listed on this page, but you must write your paper in your own words and you must provide references notes for the sources of all data that you use in your paper. If you have any questions about plagiarism, start by reading the course policy prohibiting all forms of Academic Dishonesty, and if you have questions after that, contact your professor before you turn in your work.

CITING SOURCES

You must provide a reference note for all information used in your paper that came from the diary or any other source except for common knowledge (i.e. "the sun comes up in the morning" or "World War I ended in 1918") or from your own thought processes (i.e. your conclusion) so that your readers can verify its accuracy. You may do this with reference notes -- either footnotes or endnotes but not both -- and you do not need to include a separate bibliography. Number your reference notes in sequence starting with 1 (not "a" or "i" or "I"), and format them correctly.  For example, if your third footnote refers something from that Hamman Yaji wrote in his diary on January 29, 1922, it should look like this:

3. Hamman Yaji diary, January 29th, 1922, in James H. Vaughan & Anthony H. M. Kirk-Greene, The Diary of Hamman Yaji: Chronicle of a West African Muslim Ruler (Bloomington IN: Indiana University Press, 1995), 78.

After the first time that you refer to the diary, each subsequent reference note can use the short format:

[note number]. Hamman Yaji diary, [date], in Vaughan & Kirk-Greene, [page number].

Reference notes for all other sources must follow the rules of the Chicago Manual of Style (or its condensed version, edited by Kate L. Turabian, both of which are available in the WCU Library).   For examples of how to refer to the most common types of sources, visit this page.

GRADING RUBRIC (final draft)

PERCENT CRITERIA
40 Your explanation of the importance of your topic to Hamman Yaji shows evidence of additional thought beyond your first draft. In other words, your final paper shows that you thought critically about the content of your first draft and revised it to make it better.
15 Your paper includes correctly formatted reference notes for all of your data.
15 Your paper is written using complete sentences organized in logical paragraphs (except for data from tables or quoted material).
10 You expanded or explained all abbreviations in your paper, and you have used no ambiguous pronouns. In other words, if you used a pronoun (i.e. he, she, it, they, them, her, etc.), there is no question as to what it refers.
10 You corrected all spelling, punctuation and grammatical errors.
10 Your final paper contains 1,500 to 2,000 words, it contains no title page (type your name and topic at the top of the first page), your pages are numbered, and your paper is typewritten or laser-printed on standard white paper (8.5x11) with 1-inch margins and a common 14-point font (Courier, Times Roman, Helvetica or Arial are acceptable).
-50 Your paper fails to address your assigned topic.
-10 Your assignment is less than 1 hour late (emailed papers due before 2pm; hard copies due before the start of class).
-100 Your assignment is 1 or more hours late.

Go to the course syllabus

 


 

PAPER ON GLOBALIZATION'S IMPACT: As the world becomes more integrated, events in distant countries and decisions by foreign organizations (including corporations) generate effects in countries like Algeria. Using Merzak Allouache's book Bab el Oued, locate an episode in which an event or decision in another country affected the lives of one or more characters in the book. Then write a short paper (1-2 pages) that identifies the page(s) where the incident appears, the external (to Algeria) source, and the internal (within Algeria) effect. Unlike the Hamman Yaji paper, this assignment must be printed out and submitted on paper. Grades will be awarded as follows:

GRADING RUBRIC (globalization paper)

PERCENT CRITERIA
30 You identified an external influence and clearly explained what it is.
30 You identified an internal effect and clearly explained what it was and who it affected.
10 Your paper is written using complete sentences organized in logical paragraphs (except for data from tables or quoted material).
10 You expanded or explained all abbreviations in your paper, and you have used no ambiguous pronouns. In other words, if you used a pronoun (i.e. he, she, it, they, them, her, etc.), there is no question as to what it refers.
10 You corrected all spelling, punctuation and grammatical errors.
10 Your paper contains 500 to 1,000 words, it contains no title page (type your name and topic at the top of the first page), your pages are numbered, and your paper is typewritten or laser-printed on standard white paper (8.5x11) with 1-inch margins and a common 14-point font (Courier, Times Roman, Helvetica or Arial are acceptable).
-50 Your paper fails to address the assigned topic.
-10 Your assignment is less than 1 hour late.
-100 Your assignment is 1 or more hours late.

Go to the course syllabus

 


 

CLASS PARTICIPATION: Without class participation, there would be no reason to hold class -- you could read a book or watch a movie and then take a test to see how much you memorized. But in order to go beyond memorization -- to ask questions, reason and devise theories and answers -- you need to talk with and listen to others. Class participation measures how well you do that.

After each class, your professor will record whether you contributed to the day's discussion and whether your contribution showed evidence of preparation (i.e. did you read the assignment, did you come to class with your own questions or did you do anything else to get ready for class). Please remember that class discussions are not competitive events to see who speaks the most, but rather an effort to get everyone involved. As a consequence, you will receive more points for comments that inspires others to contribute than you will for making comments intended to show how much you know.

Go to the course syllabus

 


View a list of all of Jim Jones' course syllabi.