Africa and Islam, HIST 3830 (WI)
CRN 32915, Section 001
MWF: 11 - 11:50 a.m., Brewster D-312
Spring Semester, 2017

Dr. Kenneth Wilburn
Office Hours (BA-318): MWF 10 - 10:50 and by Appointment
Office Telephone: 252-328-1029
Academic Home Page:

Course Goals:

Students in HIST 3830 will learn the subject matter of Africa and Islam in provincial, national and global contexts. Jules Benjamin's A Student's Guide to History will introduce students to research methodology, principles, and concepts related to the discipline of history and historical research. Finally, students will learn about history's contribution to general knowledge, as well as how Africa and Islam have much to teach us all about the human experience.

HIST 3830 is a writing intensive course in the Writing Across the Curriculum Program at ECU that contributes to the twelve-hour WI requirement for students at ECU. Upon completion of HIST 3830 students will:

  1. Use writing to investigate complex, relevant topics and address significant questions through engagement with and effective use of credible sources.
  2. Produce writing that reflects an awareness of context, purpose, and audience, particularly within the written genres (Including genres that integrate writing with visuals, audio or other multimodal components) of their major disciplines and/or career fields.
  3. Demonstrate that they understand writing as a process that can be made more effective though drafting revision.
  4. Proofread and edit their own writing, avoiding grammatical and mechanical errors.
  5. Assess and explain the major choices that they make in their writing.
Near the end of HIST 3830, students must upload one major writing project, along with a description of the assignment for that project and brief responses to four questions about your writing, to your "University Writing Portfolio," which you will access and create (if you have not already done so in a previous WI course) through the "iWebfolio Student Portfolio" link in Pirate Port located here: For step-by-step instructions to complete the upload process, access

Journal Assignment (60%):

Your summary/reaction journal in Evernote is worth 60% of your course grade. Your private, online summary/reaction course journal is your most important assignment, shared only between you and me--the class cannot see it, and carried out according to instructions I have sent to you via email. In your journal you summarize and react to all classes, readings, internet sites, and films. Your journal is due on 1 February (midnight, Wednesday), 20 March (midnight, Monday), and 19 April (midnight, Wednesday). Grades for these dates are weighted 10%, 40% and 50% respectively. If your journal is incomplete when due for assessment, you will lose at least one letter grade. The method of assessment, table of contents, entry due dates, and other important information are located within the Evernote journal template. Your journal will be your course archive and your final exam study guide. Students who earn an "A" on their journals, who constructively and frequently participate in discussions, and who have no more than 2 absences are exempt from the final exam. However, if your journal is ever late or incomplete, you must take the final exam.

Book Reviews (20%):

You must carry out two 500-word book reviews: Kenneth Wilburn's Drawing Meaning into History (due Monday, 6 February, accompanied by two drawings: "Draw History" and "Draw the Course--Africa and Islam") and Beverly Mack and Jean Boyd's One Woman's Jihad, Nana Asma'u (due Monday, 27 March).

Final Exam (20%):

Your final exam will be an essay exam carried out in our classroom from 11 a.m.- 1:30 p.m., Friday, 28 April.

Required Texts:

Benjamin, Jules. A Student's Guide to History.
Mack, Beverly and Jean Boyd. One Woman's Jihad, Nana Asma'u.
Robinson, David. Muslim Societies in African History.
Wilburn, Kenneth. Drawing Meaning into History.

Class Attendance Policy:

Seven or more absences effect failure.

Class Decorum:

Please enjoy Facebook, Twitter, email and other social media before you enter and after you exit our classroom. Except your laptop for note-taking, all communications devices must be turned off. Your classmates and I thank you in advance for your good manners and respectful commitment to intellectual engagement in Africa and Islam.

Severe Weather:
Emergency Announcements and Hotline:

ECU seeks to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Students requesting accommodations
must first go to the Department of Disability Support Services, Slay 138; call 252-737-1016.

Return to the Academic Home Page

First Online Edition: 9 January 2008
Last Revised: 11 January 2017