A rubric for grading historical writing, which can be adjusted to suit primary source analyses, historiographical essays or research papers.
A sample primary source analysis assignment, originally assigned for History 101: American disasters
A sample historiographical review assignment, originally assigned for History 101: American disasters
One final paper option for Natural Disasters in American History, which asked students to imaginatively place themselves in the midst or aftermath of a natural disaster.
I believe that when students spend some time – even a few minutes – thinking and writing about a week’s readings, they’re more inclined to be engaged earlier in the classes that discuss those readings. I’ve recently used posts to a class blog to get students to think analytically about their reading responses, and ask them to follow certain blogging guidelines.