Curriculum information of Carey Baptist Grammar School

Carey Website | Contacts | Sitemap | Home

  pathways logo    



  Carey Donvale | Junior School Kew | Middle School | Senior School | Co-curricular
Year 10 | IB | VCE | Learning Areas | Other Curriculum | Student Development |

Year 10 Humanities (Students must select at least one unit from Humanities)

American History

Semester Elective Unit


There are no prerequisites for this course.  

Course Description

America’s place in the world is unique, its economic power, its all-pervasive culture and its political presence has no rival. Much of its character stems from its geography, the United States has forged an identity based on its distance from the old world and its plentiful geographical resources. But more than its geographic advantages, America’s history has created the distinctive attitude that makes many other countries envious. We can admire the USA and cringe at the same time; arguably, no other country has that power. Indeed, no other country has been able to socially, economically and politically control the destiny of so many on the planet.

This subject provides a snapshot or survey of the recent history of the USA with particular attention on how they have become the nation they are and how they have represented themselves to the world.

Essential Questions

  • How do historical representations illustrate a nation's sense of self?
  • How did the American democracy form and what impact did European colonisation have?
  • Where do civil rights originate from and in what circumstances are civil rights abandoned?
  • What does a democracy need to do to maintain its civil liberties?

Areas of Study

Thirteen Colonies
In this introductory area of study, students explore the basic geography of the USA and investigate the formation of the first European colonies.

In July 1776, Americans declared themselves independent and began a war with England, a country that many Americans still saw as home. In this unit, students investigate the causes of the War of Independence focussing on the movements, ideology, leaders and events (MILE). 

‘Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean’
The American Civil War and the Civil Rights Movement were joined by their relationship to the plight of African-Americans. In this area of study, students chart the causes, course and consequences of these travails. 

Enemies at Home and Abroad
The final unit looks at America’s relationship with one of their nearest neighbours, Cuba and the assassination of JFK. 


Task Description
Analysis of an Historical Representation Students analyse and evaluate various representations of the Boston Massacre.
Research Task Students investigate the movements, ideology, leaders and events that contributed to the American Revolution of 1776.

Extended Response

Students respond in written form to the reasons for the outbreak of Civil War in 1861.
Short Answer Test Students are tested on their knowledge of the causes, course and consequences of the Civil Rights Movement . 
Semester Examination Students undertake an examination at the conclusion of the course.