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Online · College of Arts & Sciences · Philosophy

The African American Experience

  • CG
  • Section 8WK
  • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020
  • Modified 04/07/2022

Course Description

An examination of the cultural social, religious, political, literary, and entrepreneurial dynamics of the African American experience from 1860 to the present.


For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.


This course is designed as an interdisciplinary survey of the experiences of African Americans in the social and cultural history of America. The goal of this course is to nurture a recognition of the African American experience in terms of its development and contribution within the broader American culture in order to foster an understanding of biblical diversity and racial reconciliation for Christians engaged in this world.

Course Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Assess factors related to the religious, political, economic, social, and literary dynamics of the African American experience.
  2. Evaluate the spectrum of Christian responses throughout history to racial and social inequality.
  3. Appraise the religious, political, economic, social, and literary contributions of African Americans in America.
  4. Apply biblical teachings in fostering the correct Christian response of reconciliation and continued social and ethical responsibility.

General Education Foundational Skill Learning Outcomes

Civic and Global Engagement

    1. Identify the main features of a worldview, assessing the cultural, political, economic, and industrial implications.
    2. Relate government and/or culture to various aspects of life.
    3. Assess the Christian principles and general practices for effectively engaging people from different social and/or cultural backgrounds.
    4. Describe the impact of a person’s global perspective on evangelism and cross-cultural engagement.
    5. Relate the human experience within various civic and global structures to participation in the redemptive work of God.

Course Resources

Click on the following link to view the required resource(s) for the term in which you are registered: Liberty University Online Bookstore

Additional Materials for Learning

  1. Computer with basic audio/video output equipment
  2. Internet access (broadband recommended)
  3. Canvas recommended browsers
  4. Microsoft Word and PowerPoint
  5. Software (“plug-ins”) to read Quicktime and Shockwave files (obtainable free online from Adobe and Quicktime sites)
  6. APA Style Central Link:

Course Assignments

Textbook readings and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in the Course Overview.

Discussions (2)

Discussions are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student will respond to the prompts provided (noted below), and post a thread, containing 200–250 words, to the Discussion. In addition to the thread, the student must submit 2 replies of at least 150 words to 2 classmates’ threads (CLO: A, B, C; FSLO: CGE 1, 2, 3 and 5, CIL 1, CT 5, SSI 3).

Music and Culture PowerPoint Presentation Assignment

This assignment will require the student to identify a musical group/individual and trace their contributions to the African American experience as influencers of culture. This assignment will be submitted as a PowerPoint presentation and must include a title page and 6–8 additional slides. Slides should cover the background of the chosen musician(s), his/her musical genre and the ways in which the chosen musician influenced that genre, the historical context surrounding the musician, and the musician’s overall cultural impact. At least 1 picture or sound clip is required on each slide. Narration of the presentation by the student is also welcome (CLO: A, C; FSLO: CGE 2, CIL 2).

Response Paper Assignment (2)

After reviewing the course material for this week, the student will write a response paper of 500–750 words addressing the assigned topic in APA formatting (CLO: A, C; FSLO: CGE 1, 2, CIL 3, CT 5).

Wiki Assignment

The student will create a Bibliographical Wiki using the Wiki tool. The purpose of the assignment is to highlight the literary figures who have shaped the African American experience while introducing the use of reliable reference sources and encouraging the use of clear explanatory writing. The wiki format also provides a platform for interaction as the student revises the entries posted by his/her peers. The student creates a page for the wiki by selecting a person from the list provided, and by compiling biographical sketch of that person using online sources available through the Jerry Falwell Library. The student then selects two pages created by other classmates and revises those pages. The student also correctly cites the sources used to compile the original page and the revisions (CLO: A, C; FSLO: CGE 2).

Wiki Revisions Assignment

The student will open the Biographical Wiki and select at least two pages for revision, making revisions and changes that will significantly improve the quality of the biographical sketch and ensure that the significance of the person is clearly explained. The student will include both substantive content revisions as well as writing edits.

Quizzes (8)

The student will take a quiz in each Module: Week covering the readings, presentations, and other learning activities specific to the Module: Week. Quizzes consist of multiple-choice and essay questions. The student will have 1 hour to complete each open-book/open-notes test. For each minute over the time limit, the total score will be reduced by 1 point. Because of the time limit, the student must be prepared before starting each test (CLO: A; FSLO: CGE 2).

Essay Response—Racial Reconciliation through Christ Assignment

The student will answer the following question in an essay of at least 750 words. A strong introduction/thesis and conclusion are required. The student must cite course materials used when making his/her arguments in APA formatting (CLO: D; FSLO: CGE 4, 5, CIL 4, 5, CT 5, CC 3).

Course Grading

Course Requirements Checklist


Discussion Board Forums (2 at 100 pts ea)


Music and Culture PowerPoint Presentation


Response Papers (2 at 100 pts ea)


Wiki Assignment


Wiki Revisions


Quizzes (8 at 30 pts ea)







Late Assignment Policy

Course Assignments, including discussions, exams, and other graded assignments, should be submitted on time.

If the student is unable to complete an assignment on time, then he or she must contact the instructor immediately by email.

Assignments that are submitted after the due date without prior approval from the instructor will receive the following deductions:

  1. Late assignments submitted within one week after the due date will receive up to a 10% deduction.
  2. Assignments submitted more than one week and less than 2 weeks late will receive up to a 20% deduction.
  3. Assignments submitted two weeks late or after the final date of the course will not be accepted outside of special circumstances (e.g. death in the family, significant personal health issues), which will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the instructor.
  4. Group projects, including group discussion threads and/or replies, and assignments will not be accepted after the due date outside of special circumstances (e.g. death in the family, significant personal health issues), which will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the instructor.

Disability Assistance

Students with a disability and those with medical conditions associated with pregnancy may contact Liberty University’s Online Office of Disability Accommodation Support (ODAS) at [email protected] for accommodations.  Such accommodations require appropriate documentation of your condition.   For more information about ODAS and the accommodations process, including how to request an accommodation, please visit Requests for accommodations not related to disabilities or pregnancy must be directed to the Registrar’s Office, which generally handles medical needs support.

If you have a complaint related to disability discrimination or an accommodation that was not provided, you may contact ODAS or the Office of Equity and Compliance by phone at (434) 592-4999 or by email at [email protected].  Click to see a full copy of Liberty’s Discrimination, Harassment, and Sexual Misconduct Policy or the Student Disability Grievance Policy and Procedures.

Course Attendance

In an effort to comply with U.S. Department of Education policies, attendance is measured by physical class attendance or any submission of a required assignment within the enrollment dates of the course (such as examinations, written papers or projects, any discussion posts, etc.) or initiating any communication with one’s professor regarding an academic subject. More information regarding the attendance policy can be found in the Academic Course Catalogs. Regular attendance in online courses is expected throughout the length of the term. Students who do not attend within the first week of a sub-term by submitting a required academic assignment (such as the Course Requirements Checklist, an examination, written paper or project, discussion post, or other academic activity) will be dropped from the course. Students who wish to re-engage in the course are encouraged to contact Academic Advising to discuss their enrollment options. Students who begin an online course, but at some point in the semester cease attending, and do not provide official notification to withdraw, will be assigned a grade of “FN” (Failure for Non-Attendance). Students wishing to withdraw from courses after the official start date should familiarize themselves with the withdrawal policy.

Grading Scale

900-1010 800-899 700-799 600-699 0-599

For courses with a Pass/NP final grade, please refer to the Course Grading section of this syllabus for the assignment requirements and/or point value required to earn a Passing final grade.

Add/Drop Policy

The full policy statement and procedures are published in the Policy Directory.

Honor Code

Liberty University comprises a network of students, Alumni, faculty, staff and supporters that together form a Christian community based upon the truth of the Bible. This truth defines our foundational principles, from our Doctrinal Statement to the Code of Honor. These principles irrevocably align Liberty University’s operational procedures with the long tradition of university culture, which remains distinctively Christian, designed to preserve and advance truth. Our desire is to create a safe, comfortable environment within our community of learning, and we extend our academic and spiritual resources to all of our students with the goal of fostering academic maturity, spiritual growth and character development.

Communities are predicated on shared values and goals. The Code of Honor, an expression of the values from which our Doctrinal Statement was born, defines the fundamental principles by which our community exists. At the core of this code lie two essential concepts: a belief in the significance of all individuals, and a reliance on the existence of objective truth.

While we acknowledge that some may disagree with various elements of the Code of Honor, we maintain the expectation that our students will commit to respect and uphold the Code while enrolled at Liberty University.

Adherence to the principles and concepts established within facilitates the success of our students and strengthens the Liberty community.

The Code of Honor can be viewed in its entirety at


Course calendar and related activities
When Topic Notes
Course Overview
Student Acknowledgements

Course Requirements Checklist

Technology Integration Set-Up

Prepare: Register for Connect

Read: Technology Integration Set-Up Overview

Explore: McGraw Hill Student Resources

VitalSource Student Resources

RedShelf Student Resources

Module 1: Week 1

Read: 4 items

Watch: 2 items


Discussion: Emancipation and the Church

Quiz: From Slavery to Freedom

Module 2: Week 2

Read: 4 items

Watch: 6 items

Listen: 1 item

Explore: 1 item


Music and Culture Presentation Assignment

Quiz: African American Music

Module 3: Week 3

Read: 3 items

Watch: 1 item

Explore: 1 item


Response Paper: Great Migration Assignment

Quiz: Migration

Module 4: Week 4

Read: 2 items

Watch: 2 items


Biographical Wiki Assignment

Quiz: African American Literature

Module 5: Week 5

Read: 6 items

Watch: 4 items


Response Paper: Margaret Sanger Assignment

Quiz: Education and Health

Module 6: Week 6

Read: 6 items

Watch: 1 item


Discussion: Letters to a Birmingham Jail

Quiz: Christian Response to the Civil Rights Movement

Module 7: Week 7

Read: 4 items

Watch: 2 items


Essay Assignment

Quiz: Racial Reconciliation Through Christ

Module 8: Week 8

Read: 2 items

Watch: 1 item


Biographical Wiki Revision Assignment

Quiz: Economics and Entrepreneurship