A Short Paper Assignment allows you, early in the course, to demonstrate your research skills to your instructor and to receive feedback that will benefit you when you write your research paper. With this assignment, you will learn how to do proper and adequate research and write a short paper and prepare you for writing the research paper.

This short paper is at least three double-spaced pages of text (Times New Roman, font size 12) and you must consult a minimum of two academically credible sources. Bibliographies and citations are preferred  in the Chicago Manual of Style format. However, you may use another style if you wish.

The short paper needs to be turned in through the assignment section for grading. If you use any of the information from your sources word-for-word, you must cite the source by using endnotes or footnotes. If you read the information and write it in your own words and it is not common knowledge, then you must cite the source because you are paraphrasing someone’s information.

The short paper must include a cover page with your name, course number and course title, instructor’s name, and date. You must also include a bibliography at the end of your paper. While composing your paper, use proper English. Do not use abbreviations, contractions, passive voice, or first/ second person (I, you, we, our, etc). Before submitting your paper, check your grammar and use spell check. Remember, the way you talk is not the way you write a paper. Please label your paper as follows: lastnamefirstnameHIST122ShortPaper.


Please select one of the primary source documents from Chapters 16-20 in your textbook to analyze.  These are the blue highlighted sections labeled Documents. Please write a 3 page response consulting 2 sources outside of the textbook and think about and answer these questions.

  1. Who wrote the source?  When was the source written?  What type of document is it?  What is the main storyline?
  2. Who is the intended audience?  (One of the most important questions).  Why was it written?  What assumptions can be made about source and author?
  3. Can I believe this document?  What can I learn about society/people who created document?  How does source relate to its historical context?
  4. Why you think the writer chose to express him or herself in this way?
  5. What do you think is the lasting importance of the document you chose?  Why is it important in the big picture that is Western History?