Recertification Course Syllabus

45 Recertification Points

Instructor: Dr. Nate Sleeter

Instructor: Justin Broubalow


Center for History and New Media
4400 University Drive, MSN 1E7
Fairfax, VA 22030-4444

t: 703-993-9277
f: 703-993-4585

Hidden in Plain Sight is an online course designed for history and social studies teachers. There are no in-person class meetings; all course work is completed online and asynchronously through the course website.

Course Structure

The course features 17 online modules — 8 of which must be completed. The first module focuses on analyzing objects and historical thinking — the process of analyzing primary sources and constructing historical arguments. All other modules use a different everyday object as a window through which we can examine a specific period or theme in American history. Together, these modules provide new information about American history and some new ways to think about teaching the past.

Each module contains a set of resources to guide you through the historical content. In each module you will complete several activities that allow you to engage in the historical inquiry process and provide opportunities to think about classroom applications, and a short quiz to review content. After you complete the Analyzing Objects module, you can choose 7 additional modules to complete, and can complete them in any order.

Course Requirements

Students enrolled in Hidden in Plain Sight for 45 recertification credits are expected to work through 8 modules and complete all required assignments. Modules are due by stated deadlines and all work must be completed by April 25, 2018. Assignments in each module include:

  1. Hypothesis: Aside from the first module, each module begins with a picture of anobject and a question: “What do you notice about this object? How might this object connect to broader themes in American history?” You'll be asked to craft a short hypothesis answering that question, but don't worry if it's not immediately obvious — you'll encounter materials later in the module that will help you, and you'll have another chance to answer the question once you've learned more about the object and its context.
  2. Resources: Once you have submitted your thoughts, you'll move to the resources section: a group of images, objects, short videos, and text connected with the main object. Each of these resources provides important additional information surrounding the object's significance in American history. This information will help you refine your initial hypothesis.
  3. Rethink: Reflect on what you have learned about the object's significance in history and revise your hypothesis.
  4. Connections Essay: Review your new hypothesis, and read a short essay that expands on the everyday object's significance in American history.
  5. Classroom Connections: Reflect on classroom applications.
  6. Wrap-up: Read what other teachers have posted on the topic and share ideas.

Course Schedule: Enrollment I

Due Date Module
January 31 Complete Module 1 (Analyzing Objects)
February 12 Complete Module 2 (selected individually)
February 21 Complete Module 3 (selected individually)
February 28 Complete Module 4 (selected individually)
March 12 Complete Module 5 (selected individually)
March 28 Complete Module 6 (selected individually)
April 11 Complete Module 7 (selected individually)
April 25 Complete Module 8 (selected individually)


Course Schedule: Enrollment II

Due Date Module
March 12 Complete Module 1 (Analyzing Objects)
March 19 Complete Module 2 (selected individually)
March 26 Complete Module 3 (selected individually)
April 2 Complete Module 4 (selected individually)
April 9 Complete Module 5 (selected individually)
April 16 Complete Module 6 (selected individually)
April 23 Complete Module 7 (selected individually)
April 30 Complete Module 8 (selected individually)