Last fall, I blogged about a course that I was constructing that combined history and comics in the classroom. The course was then in its infancy, just starting to go through the University of Maine’s undergraduate curriculum approval process. Well, I’m happy to report that “HTY 221: History and Comics” made it through the approval process earlier this year and is now an actual course at UMaine. In fact, today is exactly one month away from when the course will be first offered, as part of the university’s Fall 2016 slate of undergraduate courses.
None of this is to say that it was an easy process to get to this point. While I’ve been thinking about how to construct this type of course since about 2012, I
could find very few models to inform my thinking of how I could actually put it together. Once I had finally produced a first draft of the syllabus, it then had to make its way through three levels of university committees before receiving final approval. Two of the committees required several revisions before allowing the course proposal to move on, which compelled me, in a good way, to further think about and clarify the goals of the course. While the whole approval process took about six months, the final, general version of the syllabus was definitely much stronger for having gone through it.
I’m also happy to report that I just finished the transition from the general syllabus to the version specifically tailored for Fall 2016. I’ve included a PDF copy of the syllabus, as it currently stands, at the bottom of this post. Please feel free to use it as a model, offer comments, or simply read it for amusement. Now that I have been afforded with the privilege and opportunity to construct what I consider to be a dream course, it seems only fitting to share the final product.