Module Introduction

Growth and Development

Module Introduction

This module begins with the return of the two-party system after the end of the “Era of Good Feelings.” It then moves onto a discussion of the controversial presidency of Andrew Jackson. It also includes coverage of American economic development, as well as religion, culture, and reform prior to the Civil War. Be aware that the readings for this module are fairly extensive, so budget your time accordingly.

As you read this module, think of how the reform movements and utopian communities of the 19th century are similar to organizations that exist today. Notice that reform movements and utopian communities tend to arise during times of great change or turmoil regardless of time period. Do you see any long-term impact of the groups covered in this module? Also, consider the popularity of Andrew Jackson during his own time period, as contrasted with the criticism he receives today. Can you think of any recent American leaders who were popular during their time but might be viewed unfavorably by history? 1

Learning Outcomes

This module addresses the following Course Learning Outcomes listed in the Syllabus for this course:

  • Students will be able to think critically about institutions, cultures, and behaviors in their local and/or national environment.
  • Students will understand the social, political, and economic development of the United States.
  • Students will develop a historical context for understanding current issues and events. 1

Module Objectives

Upon completion of this module, the student will be able to:

  • Compare and contrast the experiences of workers in the North and in the South.
  • Discuss sectionalism in the early years following independence.
  • Evaluate the successes, failures, and long-term impact of mid-19th century reform movements.
  • Evaluate the successes and failures of Andrew Jackson. 1

Readings and Resources

  • Module 5 Learning Unit