Civic Engagement through U.S History Certificate

Civic Engagement through U.S History

Certificate Program

Course Delivery

On Campus, Online, Hybrid

Total Credits

12 Credits

About the Certificate Program

The Certificate in Civic Engagement through U.S. History program is designed to encourage the specific study of the United States governmental system, its history, founding documents, the evolution of the understanding of these documents over time, and the nature of, and challenges to, our liberal democracy. The program covers theoretical, political, historical, and practical aspects of citizenship and the institutions of democratic governance, and on the rights and responsibilities of members of society in relation to laws and government.


Focus of Study

The focus of study for the Civics certification program is on the history of American civic formation, including the United States governmental system, its founding documents, the evolution of the understanding of these documents over time, and the nature of and challenges to our liberal democracy.

The program covers theoretical, political, historical, and practical aspects of citizenship and the institutions of democratic governance, with an emphasis on the rights and responsibilities of members of society in relation to laws and government.

For more information, please see the attached sheet.


Program Requirements

The Certificate in Civic Engagement requires students to demonstrate sustained engagement with the creation, formation, development, and amending of U.S citizenship and American institutions. Students are expected to provide evidence of sustained engagement within at least six of the categories outlined below (to be judged via the required portfolio to be submitted by each student):

  • American Revolution
  • American Constitution
  • debates over slavery
  • the major Constitutional Amendments (the Bill of Rights, and Amendments 13 – 21)
  • major developments of American immigration in the 19th and 20th centuries
  • science and technology in American history 
  • civil rights movements
  • major social protest movements
  • the Civil War and Reconstruction
  • American participation in the World Wars
  • major competing political philosophies and political parties; and the relationship of marginalized groups to the dominant state
  • history of U.S expansion west and overseas and rights of peoples in those lands
  • impact of civic institutions and laws on social identities like race, gender, religious identity, political affiliation, among others
  • laws, rights, and social practices around public versus private life and related spaces
  • changing civic and societal debates around rights, resources (including land), and immigration

Students could demonstrate this through taking the following courses and providing a portfolio of work (to be evaluated a committee of American historians at UCCS led by Professor Paul Harvey) at the end of their certificate or minor in order to demonstrate the required engagement.

Students also would have the option of taking an internship of 3 hours in which they would work in some sustained way with contemporary civic engagement (such as a political campaign; a non-profit political or social group; working in a local historical archive on materials of interest for U.S. civic history; and other examples). The History Department already has in place an Internship course that will fulfill this need.

Course requirements include at least two courses from the American History survey courses:

  • HIST 1510: U.S.: Birth of a Nation, 1607-1789
  • HIST 1520: U.S.: Expansion and Division, 1789-1877
  • HIST 1530: U.S.: Emergence of Modern America, 1865-1920
  • HIST 1540: U.S: Recent America, 1918-Present
  • HIST 1550: African American History: From Africa to the Present Day
  • HIST 1563: American Legal History
  • HIST 1560 Introduction to Environmental History of the U.S.
  • HIST 1563 American Legal History
  • HIST 1570 Introduction to Industrial America
  • HIST 1575 History of the American Southwest

And an additional two or more courses (6- 12 hours) in any of the following upper-division American history courses that focus on issues related to the Civics minor:

  • Hist 3520: History of Latinos in the U.S.
  • Hist 3550: Religion and U.S. Culture 1500-2000
  • Hist 3580: Immigrant Histories
  • Hist 3680: Islam and the West
  • Hist 3700: Colonial America, 1607-1763
  • Hist 3710: Good Wives and Nasty Wenches: American Women’s History, 1607-1877
  • Hist 3720: From Slavery to Freedom: Slavery & the African American Experience in Colonial and Antebellum America
  • Hist 3740: African American Social and Political Thought
  • Hist 3750: Orphans, Paupers, and Other Vagabonds: Poor Relief in the U.S., 1607-1937
  • Hist 3760: Bombs, Bullets, and Brotherhood: History of American Labor
  • Hist 3770: A Strange Quiet: Epidemics in U.S. History, 1607-1920
  • Hist 3780: Welcome to the World’s Fair
  • Hist 3790: Body of Liberties: Law in American History, 1620-1920
  • Hist 3850 Historical Geography of the United States
  • Hist 3995: Undergraduate Internship in History
  • Hist 4500: World War Two: A Global History
  • Hist 4510 The American Revolution: The Forging of the Union, 1763-1789
  • Hist 4520 “The Last Great Necessity”: Cemeteries and Memory in American History
  • Hist 4530: Civil War and Reconstruction, 1850-1877
  • Hist 4540: Religion and American Culture, 1945 - Present
  • Hist 4570: War and Society: 20th Century U.S.
  • Hist 4580: The American West Hist 4690: Colorado History
  • Hist 4880: Civil Rights in American History

Additional Requirements

Intent and Completion Applications

Once admitted to UCCS, students choosing to pursue the Civic Engagement through U.S. History certificate must submit a Certificate Declaration Form.

After completing the program requirements, the student must submit the Certificate Completion Form with all supporting documents uploaded where indicated on the form.


Program Coursework

For program coursework, please visit the Academic Catalog.