School talk:History/Archive 2008

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Circle-question-blue.svg This section is a discussion of a policy, guideline, or goal in development for the School of History. Please contribute your thoughts so that a consensus can be reached and action can be taken.
Leave it up to each instructor. Chicago is required by some professors, MLA by others. Geo.plrd 15:35, 6 October 2008 (UTC)
You've known History Professors who have required MLA? The Jade Knight (d'viser) 02:29, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
Not history professors. My local university's history department has links to all four styles. It really depends on the professor. The big problem is that AP history courses tend to use MLA format. As I am designing my course to make certain that it is usable by AP students, it is counterproductive for me to force them to use Chicago when their instructor will shitcan it. I would suggest the use of Chicago but leave it up to the instructor. If I am teaching a course on historical writing, I would require APA. Just my two cents. Geo.plrd 03:32, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
Ah. High School teachers are not necessarily trained the same way history students are. English and education, I believe, favor MLA. Psychology and Linguistics, I know, favor APA. History favors Chicago (almost universally). But I think that's a sensible idea: Recommend Chicago, but leave it up to the instructor. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 03:49, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
They (high school teachers) most certainly are not. i would add to the recommendation that if the class is designed to publish articles on history, use APA. Geo.plrd 05:07, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
Why APA? History almost universally publishes articles using Chicago. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 21:58, 15 October 2008 (UTC)
Actually Turabian is a simplification of Chicago and this is standard in serious historical writing and research. Only in peripheral and combination studies (e.g. psychohistory, economic history, social history) one may find the use of APA. Dilos1 12:46, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

Course numbering?*[edit]

The Department of Southeast Asian History is keeping its own course numbers system. (The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 04:34, 19 January 2008)
I would think it would make sense to use a four-digit numbering system where 1000s are survey courses (such as American History to 1877, World History to 1600, etc), 2000s are courses that focus on a more narrowed general time frame (such as 1900-1999: America's Century), 3000s are in-depth courses (such as History of the 20th Century American West, History of Revolutions in Europe, etc), and 4000s would be specialized research or method classes. That system also would work using only 3 digits. Let me know what you all think of that. Westernhistoryus 21:26, 12 March 2008 (UTC)
As the school doesn't teach courses, I would recommend leaving this up to each Department. For example, at American history, I have a tentative process of using HIST-AM-Lxx. L is a number (1-5) that corresponds to a year of college. Geo.plrd 15:30, 6 October 2008 (UTC)
A few thoughts: If that numbering system is unique to the American History Dep't, is it necessary to include HIST-AM? Furthermore, what about learning projects within American History that aren't traditional college level? Consider the discussion occuring here. Also worth considering is this. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 03:35, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
HIST-AM prevents contradictions with other departments. Geo.plrd 03:40, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
Yes, but those numbers wouldn't be used outside of the American History Department, making contradictions unlikely to begin with. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 03:50, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
Should another school use the 100-600 series, there would be a conflict. Also should another school decide to use HIST- prefixes, there would be a conflict. Geo.plrd 04:23, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
No, because that numbering and labelling would be used only within that department or school. Think of it this way: On your computer, you can have a folder called "Departments". Within that folder, you can have two folders, one which says "AM" and one which says "EU". Both of those folders can contain another folder called "100" without conflict, though one folder cannot contain 2 folders labelled "100". The Jade Knight (d'viser) 04:31, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
I simply used this as this is a variation of the method used by my local university. If people want to use another method, i have no objections. Geo.plrd 04:39, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
My point is that regular universities use such numbering schemes to help deal with specific bureaucratic needs which don't exist at Wikiversity. Here, there may be some sense to using specific numbers within a department, but the "Hist" label in particular seems like an unnecessary ritual carried over. You are, of course, free to do what you think is best. I simply think we should be hesitant to adopt any sort of specific numbering scheme at this point. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 22:02, 15 October 2008 (UTC)
OK, we can hold off on course numbering at this point. Geo.plrd 01:45, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
Jade Knight is right. However, there must be a way of diferentiation regarding the level. If we ever adopt a numbering system we must take into account the three levels: introductory, lower intermediate, upper intermediate, advamced. A student must be aware before hand of the level of the course taught, especially if there is a sequence of courses and the first is an actual prerequisite for the second. Also, the same topic can be taught at two different levels. For the time being and as the number of courses created is small, this is not of high priority. In the future though as the number of courses grow, we must do somtheing about it. Dilos1 12:54, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

Determining "Expertise"*[edit]

Circle-question-blue.svg This section is a discussion of a policy, guideline, or goal in development for the School of History. Please contribute your thoughts so that a consensus can be reached and action can be taken.
I agree with this particular strain of this section, possibly an exploratory board could be formed of a few people to determine how to evaluate expertise and credentials. Westernhistoryus 05:14, 15 March 2008 (UTC)
Personally, I believe that decisions on expertise should be left to each Department. I would support a list of Curriculum Development Advisors though. Geo.plrd 15:34, 6 October 2008 (UTC)
What do you mean by "Curriculum Development Advisors"? The Jade Knight (d'viser) 03:42, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
Basically subject experts that can provide advise on designing courses. Geo.plrd 04:26, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
So, these would be Department-specific? What do you think of Daanschr/Westernhistoryus' ideas? The Jade Knight (d'viser) 04:32, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
They are good ideas. I would have no objections to developing the initial draft as a whole with exploratory bodies, I would just like to see the final draft come from the departments where possible. Geo.plrd 04:35, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
I feel that historical expertise in an open learning space can not be based just on typical qualification. I do possess degrees in history but s’one who has spent years upon years studying the organization, for example, of the Nazi army is definitely much more qualified than me to teach this specific topic.
I feel that the instructor of a course should just state in a paragraph at the top of the course page his/her credentials and expertise that make him able to prepare and teach the specific course. The students can always differentiate between s’one who knows and s’one who does not know. Dilos1 13:32, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

Active Participants*[edit]

Circle-question-blue.svg This section is a discussion of a policy, guideline, or goal in development for the School of History. Please contribute your thoughts so that a consensus can be reached and action can be taken.

I've gone and updated the "active participants" list to define active participants as those who have contributed in the last two months. This is specifically those who are currently discussing School (as opposed to Department) issues, and those who are contributing directly to the School page here. We can still use Department liaisons, if anyone is interested. The Jade Knight 06:53, 6 September 2008 (UTC)

I will serve as the department liaison for American History. Geo.plrd 15:26, 6 October 2008 (UTC)
I take it you support the Department liaison idea, then? The Jade Knight (d'viser) 03:44, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
Correct, it is important that there be at least one POC for each department. Geo.plrd 01:43, 16 October 2008 (UTC)


Circle-question-blue.svg This section is a discussion of a policy, guideline, or goal in development for the School of History. Please contribute your thoughts so that a consensus can be reached and action can be taken.

Wikiversity now has a new Browse page which is almost entirely category-based. Because of this it is very important that History pages be properly categoried if they are to be found. I've made an announcement to encourage this. Additionally, would someone mind volunteering to go around and try to categorize history pages, at least within their own departments? Additionally, we're going to need a logical system for nesting categories—determining how categories should be placed in other categories. Strong categorization could now make a huge difference between whether a user gets lots here or is able to find the project they want. Any comments? Questions? Volunteers? The Jade Knight 06:30, 3 September 2008 (UTC)

I've recently learned that Portal:History gets over 30 hits a day. School:History gets less than 1 hit a day (evidently). People are going to the portal, and the portal uses the category system, so without proper categorization, people wont find what they're looking for in the department. This is top priority!
I've now gone and recategorized the entire History category. All history pages should belong somewhere in the overall heirarchy there. All projects should now be classed (or sub-classed), where applicable in each case, in the areas of "Topic" (theme), "Period" (time), and "Area" (place). If you create a new History category, make sure you get it under this heirarchy. Additionally, there are categories for Historiography and Meta Stuff. For Departments: it is very important that you add the category:Departments tag to your Department page if you want it to show up over at Wikiversity:Browse. If you have a learning project and you want it to be listed, make sure it is filed under Category:Learning projects. This is all an important part of attracting more attention to the School. The Jade Knight 10:43, 16 September 2008 (UTC)

I've started on a categorization guide for the School. Feedback would be great. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 14:16, 27 November 2008 (UTC)

New Department Proposal[edit]

I'd like to propose a department of Irish History in order to increase the amount of courses available here. What do people think? Either that or a department of cultural history to reflect on the burgeoning interest in the area since the 1960s. This of course could link in with the school of historiography in the discussion of new historiographical trends in the late twentieth century and deal with other aspects of historiography such as New Historicism etc etc. What do people think? No craic outta you 05:34, 5 September 2008 (UTC)

Go ahead! We've already got the nascent History of Ireland through Song, but no Irish Department. Really, though, you're welcome to do whatever you like. That said, we do have a Department of European History and Department of the History of Racism. What we really need in the School is more content, and more people involved in community-building, but if you have a great idea for a learning project and it doesn't fit any of our current Departments, feel free to create a new one! Sure would appreciate more comments on the asterisked topics here in the school talk page, as well. (Hope you don't mind me moving your comment; it's easier to find down here.) The Jade Knight 07:07, 5 September 2008 (UTC)
Right now I think that there are aren't enough people to spin off a separate department. In the future, should people be overloading the European Department with Irish courses, this would be a good idea. Geo.plrd 15:24, 6 October 2008 (UTC)
There has been no further discussion on this point in over a month. Archive? Geo.plrd 01:46, 16 October 2008 (UTC)

Requested Topics[edit]

If no one objects, I'm going to cut this section and paste its contents on appropriate department pages. At this point, I don't think it does much good here on the School page. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 14:48, 6 October 2008 (UTC)

Go ahead, I think that if we could find someone to teach it, a Soviet Union course would be highly popular Geo.plrd 15:21, 6 October 2008 (UTC)


I've just archived this page. You can find the archives up at the top; I've kept anything I think may be worth ongoing discussion, including all asterisked topics. The Jade Knight 07:35, 5 September 2008 (UTC)

Department overhauls[edit]

Apparently a lot of Departments have been set up and abandoned. Jade Knight is posting on Department talk pages about consolidation. I am posting this here for wider coverage.

  • The Department of Canadian History should be merged into the Department of American History. Completed Geo.plrd 06:12, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
  • The Department of Philosophy of History should be merged into the Department of Histography.Now Introduction to Historiography. Geo.plrd 15:47, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
  • The Department of Medieval History should be merged into the Department of European History.Archived department Geo.plrd 16:08, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
  • The Department of Chinese History, Indic History, and Southeastern Asian History should be merged into the Department of Asian History.
  • The Department of the History of Racism should be disassembled.
  • All miscellaneous courses should be offered by a Department of Social Sciences.Withdrawn Geo.plrd 16:08, 16 October 2008 (UTC)

Geo.plrd 05:03, 7 October 2008 (UTC)

I strongly advise against merging too early. It seems it is easier to merge later than to take apart. Emesee 05:33, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
I find the exact opposite to be true, Emesee. My experience here has been that it is much easier to fork than it is to consolidate. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 05:37, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
I support your first 4 recommendations. You should also add Topic:East Asian history to your list of Departments to merge into Asian History. I oppose the 5th for the time being—I would not, however, oppose downgrading "Topic:History of Racism" to simply "History of Racism" (revoking its Department status and shifting it to a course). I oppose your 6th recommendation entirely; History is only one of many Social Sciences. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 05:37, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
Upon further consideration, I am withdrawing my 6th recommendation. It was not thought out well. In its place, I am recommending that miscellaneous courses be offered in conjunction with all relevant departments. My 5th recommendation was based on the fact that History of Racism is inactive. Downgrading it to a course is a excellent idea and I am amending my 5th recommendation as such. With regards to East Asian History, I wasn't aware it existed and it and all other Asian departments are included in my recommendation. I am holding off on the mergers until the objections of my worthy colleague have been discussed. Geo.plrd 06:26, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
I have now completed the process of converting Philosophy of History into a course (Introduction to Historiography). Geo.plrd 15:46, 16 October 2008 (UTC)

Page organization[edit]

Does anyone object to me organizing this page along the lines of Topic:History of the Americas? Geo.plrd 20:17, 12 October 2008 (UTC)

What do you mean, organizing this page? The Jade Knight (d'viser) 05:31, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
If you are talking about those templates, then yes. I object strongly. That arguably takes away from organization on Wikiversity in the long run a great deal. I strongly advise against using it, but consensus is consensus. Please let me know where that template is, which I think I may have created. Emesee 05:35, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
Why do you oppose the use of templates? The Jade Knight (d'viser) 05:38, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
I was taking about using templates to put the page into sections. If people don't want it done, I won't do it. I just was curious. Geo.plrd 06:19, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
I am not opposed to it. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 06:24, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
I will be making a mockup at School:History/Reorg Geo.plrd 15:48, 16 October 2008 (UTC)

Naming Conventions*[edit]

Circle-question-blue.svg This section is a discussion of a policy, guideline, or goal in development for the School of History. Please contribute your thoughts so that a consensus can be reached and action can be taken.

I propose that all departments and categories within the School of History follow title-caps naming conventions, for consistency and aesthetic value. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 05:52, 13 October 2008 (UTC)

I object. Wikiversity has been referred to as a mess and/or disorganized and this will not help it. Emesee 05:55, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
I think this will certainly help clean up the School of History, and help make it seem both less disorganized, and less messy. There is no current Wikiversity-wide policy regarding naming conventions. In fact, the one which was proposed was soundly rejected. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 06:16, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
I concur with Jade Knight. The current method looks unprofessional. In titles, we really should be capitalizing every word, Geo.plrd 06:21, 13 October 2008 (UTC)

A-Level Department[edit]

I am looking at this department and don't see any content. Also it is dormant. Should it be merged into European History? Geo.plrd 06:38, 16 October 2008 (UTC)

I don't think so, and this is why: the A-Level stuff is designed to be used specifically by students studying for (British) high-school level exams. Kind of like AP History, actually. At any rate, this sort of test-specific study guide (where not intended to be a more general guide to history) probably deserves separate listing. That said, maybe something can be done with it... I'll take a look. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 11:55, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
Upon reflection: it could be listed under European History. But I think we also need a Study Guide Center or something, as well, where students could look up information by test, etc. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 12:00, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
What if we made a resource section called Study Guides? Basically it would be a section with study guides for tests? Geo.plrd 15:45, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
I was thinking about something along those lines. Probably should be a Topic:, and probably should explicitly say "History" somewhere in the name. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 23:41, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
Topic:History Study Guides? Geo.plrd 04:23, 17 October 2008 (UTC)
Sounds good. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 07:29, 17 October 2008 (UTC)


Since we are heading for a full caps naming convention, I realigned the categorization of departments. Every other department is using first cap, making History Departments look out of place. I am going through and regrouping them in a subcat that is linked to the main cat. Geo.plrd 21:41, 26 October 2008 (UTC)

Huh? (I'm not sure what you're talking about, specifically...) The Jade Knight (d'viser) 02:58, 30 October 2008 (UTC)
Emesee didn't like the fact that every word in department names is capitalized. He claimed that it looked out of place in the categories. Geoff Plourde 15:47, 30 October 2008 (UTC)
Yes, I follow that far. But what are you doing? The Jade Knight (d'viser) 00:13, 31 October 2008 (UTC)
I was adding a History Departments category, and considering removing the Departments category. Geoff Plourde 16:58, 31 October 2008 (UTC)
Need the Departments category to get the Department listed over at Wikiversity:Browse. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 11:25, 1 November 2008 (UTC)
OK, then. Geoff Plourde 22:21, 1 November 2008 (UTC)

New User[edit]

Guys, i'm checking out what you are doing with this web site, and i would be glad to contribute to the advancement of it. (The preceding unsigned comment was added by Jeffri139 (talkcontribs) )

Welcome to the School of History, Jeffri139! What's your particular area of expertise, or are you just here to learn? The Jade Knight (d'viser) 21:03, 18 November 2008 (UTC)

History of Science[edit]

Hello everybody. My focus is in the history of science (biological sciences and science theory), but I don't see a particular department for my specialty. I'm feeling out this space, seeing if I want to start adding some of my course materials and I thought I would post this question. If I decided to get involved, would anybody help me to start a history of science "category?" Is this even something that this community would want? Hyacinth 20:26, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

Have you taken a glance at Category:History of Science? I'm sure we'd love to see a survey course on the "History of Science", if you're up to developing one. It's definitely not my own area of expertise, however, I'm afraid. The Jade Knight (d'viser) 23:14, 15 December 2008 (UTC)