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United States History Content Standards (redirected from US History Content Standards)

Page history last edited by Pam Merrill 3 years, 12 months ago


Engage in Democratic Processes 

Analyze and Address Authentic Civic Issues 

Acquire, Apply, and Evaluate Evidence 

Read Critically and Interpret Informational Sources 

Engage in Evidence-

Based Writing 

United States History Content Standards

USH.1 The student will analyze the transformation of the United States through its civil rights struggles, immigrant experiences, and settlement of the American West in the Post-Reconstruction Era, 1865 to the 1920s.





USH.1.1   Explain the constitutional issues that arise in the post-Civil War era including federalism, separation of powers, and the system of checks and balances.

USH.1.2   Analyze the post-Reconstruction civil rights struggles.

A. Identify the significance of Juneteenth in relation to emancipation and modern-day celebrations.

B. Examine the purposes and effects of the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments.

C. Assess the impact of the Black Codes, Jim Crow laws, and the actions of the Ku Klux Klan.

USH.1.3   Analyze the impact of westward expansion and immigration on migration, settlement patterns in American society, economic growth, and American Indians.

A. Summarize the reasons for immigration, shifts in settlement patterns, the immigrant experience at immigrant processing centers such as Ellis Island and Angel Island, and the impact of Nativism and Americanization.

B. Analyze the creation of federal immigration policies including the Chinese Exclusion Act, the Gentlemen’s Agreement, federal court decisions, the Supreme Court’s application of the 14th Amendment and the Immigration Act of 1924.

C. Examine the rationale behind federal policies toward American Indians including the establishment of reservations, attempts at assimilation, the end of the Indian Wars at Wounded Knee, and the impact of the Dawes Act on tribal sovereignty and land ownership.

D. Compare viewpoints of American Indian resistance to United States Indian policies as evidenced by Red Cloud in his Cooper Union speech, Quanah Parker, and Chief Joseph as expressed in his I Will Fight No More Forever speech.

USH.2 The student will analyze the social, economic and political changes that occurred during the American Industrial Revolution, the Gilded Age, and significant reform movements from the 1870s to the 1920s.



USH.2.1   Evaluate the transformation of American society, economy and politics during the American Industrial Revolution.

A. Analyze the impact of capitalism, laissez- faire policy and the role of leading industrialists as robber barons, captains of industry and  philanthropists including John D. Rockefeller and Andrew Carnegie and his Gospel of Wealth essay on American society.

B. Identify the impact of new inventions and industrial production methods including new technologies by Thomas Edison, Alexander G. Bell, Henry Ford, and the Bessemer process.

C. Evaluate the contributions of muckrakers, including Ida Tarbell, Jacob Riis and Upton Sinclair, in changing government policies regarding child labor, working conditions and regulation of big business.

D. Analyze major social reform movements including the Women’s Suffrage and Temperance Movement and the leadership of Susan B. Anthony, Alice Paul, and Jane Addams.

E. Evaluate the significance of the Labor Movement on the organization of workers including the impact of the Pullman strikes, the Haymarket Riot, and the leadership of Eugene V. Debs.

F. Assess and summarize changing race relations as exemplified in the Plessy v. Ferguson case.

G. Compare early civil rights leadership including the viewpoints of Booker T. Washington, and W.E.B. DuBois in response to rising racial tensions, the anti-lynching work of Ida B. Wells, and the use of poll taxes and literacy tests to disenfranchise blacks.

USH.2.2   Evaluate the rise and reforms of Populism and the Progressive Movement including:

A. direct primary, initiative petition, referendum, and recall intended to limit the corrupting influence of political machines

B. impact of William Jennings Bryan and his Cross of Gold speech on the political landscape

C. series of events leading to and the effects of the 16th, 17th, 18th, 19th, and 21st Amendments to the Constitution of the United States.

USH.2.3   Analyze and summarize the key personalities, actions and policies of Presidents Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and  Woodrow Wilson by:

A. comparing the policies of Roosevelt and Taft on environmental conservation and trust busting,

B. evaluating the 1912 presidential election including the role of  Roosevelt's Bull Moose Party and Eugene V. Debs Socialist Party.

C. describing the policies of Wilson on the issue of women’s right to vote.

USH.3 The student will analyze the expanding role of the United States in international affairs as America was transformed into a world power in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, 1890 to 1920.



USH.3.1   Evaluate the impact of American imperialism on international relations and explain its impact on developing nations.

A. Compare the economic, religious, social, and political rationales for American imperialism including the concept of “white man’s burden,” the annexation of Hawaii, the impact of Admiral Alfred T. Mahan, and the actions of the Anti-Imperialist League.

B. Assess the role of yellow journalism and jingoism in inciting the desire of Americans to go to war with Spain.

C. Examine how the Spanish-American War resulted in the rise of the United States as a world power and led to new territorial acquisitions and national insurrections in Cuba and the Philippines.

D. Compare the foreign policies of Presidents Roosevelt, Taft, and Wilson including Big Stick Diplomacy, Dollar Diplomacy, Missionary Diplomacy, the Roosevelt Corollary, military interventionism, and the territorial acquisition and construction of the Panama Canal.

USH.3.2   Evaluate the long-term impact of America’s entry into World War I on national politics, the economy, and society.

A. Summarize the transformation of the United States from a position of neutrality to engagement in World War I including the Zimmermann Telegram and the threats to international trade caused by unrestricted submarine warfare. 

B. Analyze the impact of the war on the home front including the use of propaganda, women’s increased role in industry, the marshaling of industrial production, and the Great Migration.

C. Analyze the institution of a draft and the suppression of individual liberties resulting in the First Red Scare, including the Palmer Raids and the Sacco-Vanzetti trials.

D. Evaluate Wilson’s foreign policy as proposed in his Fourteen Points and the reasons for the nation’s return to isolationism highlighted by the Senate’s rejection of the League of Nations.

USH.4 The student will analyze the cycles of boom and bust of the 1920s and 1930s on the transformation of American government, the economy and society.




USH.4.1   Examine the economic, political, and social transformations between the World Wars.

A. Describe modern forms of cultural expression including the significant impact of people of African descent on American culture as exhibited by the Harlem Renaissance and the Jazz Age.

B. Describe the rising racial tensions in American society including the resurgence of the Ku Klux Klan, increased lynchings, race riots as typified by the Tulsa Race Riot, the rise of Marcus Garvey and black nationalism, and the use of poll taxes and literacy tests to disenfranchise blacks.

C. Assess the impact of the Indian Citizenship Act of 1924 on the American Indian nations.

D. Examine growing labor unrest and industry’s reactions, including the use of sit-down strikes and court injunctions, and why socialism and communism appealed to labor.

E. Describe the booming economy based upon access to easy credit through installment buying of appliances and inventions of modern conveniences including the automobile.

USH.4.2  Analyze the effects of the destabilization of the American economy.

A. Identify causes contributing to an unstable economy including the overproduction of agriculture products, greater speculation and buying on margin in the Stock Market, and the government’s pro-business and laissez-faire policies.

B. Examine the role of the Stock Market Crash and bank failures in weakening both the agricultural and manufacturing sectors of the economy leading to the Great Depression.

C. Analyze how President Herbert Hoover’s financial policies and massive unemployment as exemplified by the Bonus Army March and Hoovervilles impacted the presidential election of 1932.

D. Compare points of view regarding the economic and social impact of the Great Depression on individuals, families, and the nation.

USH.4.3  Analyze the impact of the New Deal in transforming the federal government’s role in domestic economic policies. 

A. Assess changing viewpoints regarding the expanding role of government as expressed in President Franklin Roosevelt’s First Inaugural Address.

B. Examine how national policies addressed the economic crisis including John Maynard Keynes’ theory of deficit spending, Roosevelt’s court packing plan, and the new federal agencies of the Social Security Administration, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), Works Progress Administration (WPA), Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), and the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA).

C. Summarize the causes and impact of the Dust Bowl including the government’s responses.

USH.5 The student will analyze the United States role in international affairs by examining the major causes, events and effects of the nation’s involvement in World War II, 1933 to 1946.





USH.5.1   Describe the transformations in American society and government policy as the nation mobilized for entry into World War II.

A. Examine the roles of appeasement and isolationism in the United States’ reluctance to respond to Fascist military aggression in Europe and Asia including the Neutrality Acts and the Lend-Lease program.

B. Evaluate the industrial mobilization for war and the psychological preparation for war as reflected in President Franklin Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms speech.

C. Examine President Franklin Roosevelt’s Day Which Will Live in Infamy speech and America’s conduct of the war, including the role of women and minorities in the war effort, rationing, the internment of Americans of Japanese descent, and the treatment of Americans of German, and Italian descent, including the Korematsu v. United States decision.

USH.5.2   Analyze the series of events affecting the outcome of World War II including major battles, military turning points, and key strategic decisions in both the European and Pacific Theaters of operation including Pearl Harbor, the D-Day Invasion, development and use of the atomic bomb, the island-hopping strategy, the Allied conferences at Yalta and Potsdam, and the contributions of Generals MacArthur and Eisenhower.

USH.5.3   Summarize American reactions to the events of the Holocaust resulting in United States participation in the Nuremberg Trials which held Nazi leaders accountable for war crimes.

USH.6 The student will analyze the origins of international alliances and efforts at containment of Communism following World War II. 



USH.6.1   Analyze the origins of international alliances and efforts at containment of Communism following World War II. 

A. Identify the origins of Cold War confrontations between the Soviet Union and the United States including the leadership of President Harry Truman, the postwar division of Berlin, the Berlin Blockade and Airlift, the Iron Curtain, and the Marshall Plan.

B. Describe the roles and consequences of the spheres of influence created by the formation of the United Nations and NATO by the United States and the formation of the Warsaw Pact by the Soviet Union.

C. Assess the impact and successes of the Truman Doctrine including the American military response to the invasion of South Korea.

D. Evaluate the Kennedy administration’s international goals as expressed in his Inaugural Address in light of the subsequent building of the Berlin Wall, the Bay of Pigs Invasion, the Cuban Missile Crisis, NASA, and the establishment of the Peace Corps.

USH.6.2   Describe domestic events related to the Cold War and its aftermath.

A. Summarize the reasons for the public fear of communist influence within the United States and how politicians capitalized on this fear including the leadership of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, the Army-McCarthy hearings, the Second Red Scare, the Alger Hiss controversy, and the Rosenbergs’ spy trials.

B. Examine the impact of the proliferation of nuclear weapons and the resulting nuclear arms race, the concept of brinkmanship, the doctrine of mutually assured destruction (MAD), the launching of Sputnik and the space race.

C. Evaluate the continuing role of radio, television and other mass media in relationship to the Nixon and Kennedy debates as part of the 1960 and subsequent elections.

USH.6.3   Analyze the series of events and long term foreign and domestic consequences of the United States’ military involvement in Vietnam including the Domino Theory, the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, the Tet Offensive, the presidential election of 1968, university student protests led by the counterculture  movement, expanded television coverage of the war, the War Powers Resolution Act, and the 26th Amendment. 

USH.6.4   Analyze the political and economic impact of President Nixon’s foreign policies including détente and the opening of China. 

USH.7 The student will analyze the cause and effects of significant domestic events and policies from 1945 to 1975. 


USH.7.1   Analyze the major events, personalities, tactics and effects of the Civil Rights Movement.

A. Assess the effects of President Truman’s decision to desegregate the United States armed forces and the legal attacks on segregation by the NAACP and Thurgood Marshall, the United States Supreme Court decisions in the cases of Oklahomans Ada Lois Sipuel Fisher and George McLaurin, and the differences between de jure and de facto segregation.

B. Evaluate the events arising from separate but equal, policies, such as poll taxes and literacy tests, violent responses such as the Birmingham church bombing and the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and conflicts over segregation including:

   1. Brown v. Board of Education, Topeka, Kansas decision

   2. Montgomery Bus Boycott

   3. desegregation of Little Rock Central High School

   4. Oklahoma City lunch counter sit-ins led by Clara Luper

   5. Freedom Rides

   6. Marches on Washington and Selma to Montgomery

   7. adoption of the 24th Amendment

   8. passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

C. Compare the viewpoints and the contributions of civil rights leaders and organizations linking them to events of the movement, including Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and his I Have a Dream speech, the leadership of Malcolm X, the role of organizations such as the Black Panthers; describe the tactics used at different times including civil disobedience, non-violent resistance, sit-ins, boycotts, marches, and voter registration drives.

USH.7.2  Analyze the ongoing social and political transformations within the United States.

A. Summarize and examine the United States Supreme Court’s use of the 14th Amendment incorporation doctrine in applying the Bill of Rights to the states, thereby securing and further defining individual rights and civil liberties.

B. Assess the rise of liberalism in the 1960s and the lasting impact of President Lyndon Johnson’s civil rights initiatives, the war on poverty, and the Great Society.

C. Describe the goals and effectiveness of the American Indian movements on tribal identity and sovereignty including the American Indian Movement (AIM) and mismanagement by the federal government causing the occupations at Wounded Knee and Alcatraz.

D. Describe the goals and effectiveness of the social movement of the United Farm Workers and César Chávez.

E. Compare the changing roles of women from the post-war era through the 1970s including the goals of the Women’s Liberation Movement and the National Organization of Women under the leadership of Betty Friedan, various debates on the Equal Rights Amendment, and the United States Supreme Court’s ruling in Roe v. Wade.

F. Evaluate the impact of the Watergate Scandal on executive powers including the role of the media, the Pentagon Papers, the first use of the 25th Amendment, and President Ford’s decision to pardon former President Nixon. 

USH.8 The student will analyze the impact foreign and domestic policies from 1977 to 2001.



USH.8.1   Evaluate President Jimmy Carter’s foreign policy in the Middle East including the Camp David Accords, the OPEC oil embargo, and the response to the 1979 Iranian hostage crisis.  

USH.8.2   Analyze the economic and political impact of the rise of conservatism and President Reagan’s domestic and foreign policies including Reaganomics, the Iran-Contra Scandal and Reagan’s Tear Down This Wall speech in West Berlin. 

USH.8.3   Summarize the series of events leading to the emergence of the United States as the sole superpower following the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the Soviet Empire. 

USH.8.4   Describe the goal of President George H.W. Bush’s foreign policy in forming an international coalition to counter Iraqi aggression in the Persian Gulf. 

USH.8.5   Describe and evaluate the influence of William J. Clinton’s presidency, including the

A. continuing global influence of the United States including NAFTA and the NATO interventions to restore stability to the former Yugoslav republics.

B. political impact of Clinton’s impeachment.

USH.8.6   Evaluate the rise of terrorism and its impact on the United States including the 1995 bombing of the Murrah Federal Building, the first attack on the World Trade Center Towers in 1993, the attacks on September 11, 2001, the USA PATRIOT Act, and the creation of the Department of Homeland Security. 

USH.9 The student will examine contemporary challenges and successes in meeting the needs of the American citizen and society, 2002 to the present.



USH.9.1   Assess  George W. Bush’s presidency, including the causes, conduct and consequences of the United States led wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, efforts to counter and combat terrorism, and domestic issues such as the FEMA response to Hurricane Katrina and the Great Recession. 

USH.9.2   Assess Barack Obama’s presidency, including the significance of his election, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, handling of economic conditions, establishment of DACA, and reforms to healthcare. 

USH.9.3   Examine the ongoing issues to be addressed by the Donald Trump and subsequent administrations, including taxation, immigration, employment, climate change, race relations, religious discrimination and bigotry, civic engagement, and perceived biases in the media. 

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