History - American Civil War

Ref: C2524100

The American Civil War which took place between 1861 - 1865 was a formative and traumatic event is US history, part of the reason it was fought revolved around the issue of slavery which characterised the economy of the southern states and which had been for decades opposed by northern abolitionists. the war would end slavery but would never fully address the question of civil rights which still resonates so loudly today. the issue which actually sparked hostilities was the question of secession - could the southern states which had chosen to join the union simply leave (here we have questions raised by Brexit). at the same time the war changed military history, new weapons and tactics mean this was the first modern or industrial war, and that bitter legacy, ignored by European strategists would bear bitter fruit in 1914. Half a million Americans died in the conflict and we'll be looking at battles, campaigns and commanders.

Course aim

The aim of the course is to provide a contextual overview of the causes, events and consequences of the American Civil War 1861 - 1865.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is for beginners
  • This course is for improvers
  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Understand the context of the American Civil war
  • Understand how the issue of slavery realted to the causes of the war
  • Understand how the war affected civil rights in the southern states of the USA.
  • Understand the meannig of industrial warfare in the nineteenth century context
  • Understand the narrative of the war, campaigns, commanders, battles, weapons technologies and tactics.

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning
  • You may be asked to undertake additional work in your own time to support your learning
  • You will be expected to carry out a range of activities in your own time
  • Visual displays of weapons and uniform

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will have opportunities to discuss your progress with your tutor
  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning
  • You will be encouraged to consider other students work and give your opinions and suggestions
  • A file of work will be kept which will help to record your progress
  • There will be a number of tasks appropriate to your course such as written work, creating art or craft, video, photography or small projects. Some of these may be marked to help you progress

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed
  • All materials will be provided
  • A selection of materials and basic equipment will be provided but you are welcome to bring additional materials with you
  • It would be helpful if you had access to the internet (Mobile phone, tablet or computer at home or through a library etc.)

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required
  • No pre reading is required but research on the subject on the internet or in the library may be helpful

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Become involved with the WEA in a range of voluntary work and other activities including campaigning as a WEA member
  • Become involved as a volunteer for a WEA partner or another organisation
  • You could progress to Higher Education courses. Follow link to the PEARL website for information http://pearl.open.ac.uk/
  • Access the WEA What Next? booklet here http://www.wea.org.uk/learn-wea/what-can-i-do-next
  • You might become interested in living history, re-enactment or war-gaming

Download full course information sheet

History - American Civil War

Enrolment Conditions

As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you book. Please could we ask that you check the list below to ensure you meet our basic criteria:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2018
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

Not sure or have further questions? Contact courseenquiries@wea.org.uk

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