The University of Virginia announced last week that among the several online courses offered this Fall – free of charge — is “The Kennedy Half Century,” with Larry J. Sabato, the Robert Kent Gooch Professor of Politics at UVa, and founding director of the Center for Politics. The course lasts 4 weeks, beginning on October 21.
As a public service of the Center for Politics, Dr. Sabato and his colleagues produce a comprehensive report which he has dubbed The Crystal Ball, and it is available to anyone who is interested, via email subscription – free of charge — with useful and well-documented information, relating to elections for the Presidency and Vice-presidency, as well as every office in the House of Representatives, and in the Senate.
In connection with this course is the book, “The Kennedy Half Century: The Presidency, Assassination, and Lasting Legacy of John F. Kennedy;” as well as an hour-long documentary that will air this Fall on the Public Broadcasting Service network (PBS).
The format of the course will consist of lecture videos, which run from 10 to 20 minutes in length. As with other Coursera classes, there will be integrated quiz questions within in each video. There will not be any homework assignments or any other quizzes that are not part of the video lectures, For those seeking a certificate of completion, there will be a Final exam, which is not optional.
Will I get a Statement of Accomplishment after completing this class?
Yes. Students who successfully complete the lectures and pass the final exam with a score of >= 70% will receive a Statement of Accomplishment.
What will I learn in this course?
November 2013 marks the fiftieth anniversary of the Kennedy assassination – an event that will be discussed widely in both U.S. and international media. This course will provide an introduction to the life, political career and legacy of the 35th President of the United States. John F. Kennedy has impacted U.S. politics and history in ways that few other modern presidents have been able to approach. This class will provide students with a better understanding of the influence of John F. Kennedy on the last fifty years. We will examine how his life and death continue to impact American campaigns and elections, public policy and public opinion. The course will also help enrich one’s understanding and context of the expected news coverage of anniversary events related to the Kennedy assassination. …
Are there other suggested readings besides The Kennedy Half Century?
Yes, and while the list below is long, again these are just suggestions.
This partial listing is intended as a sampling, not a full representation of all works available. Remember, we’re talking about more than fifty years of history and TEN U.S. presidential administrations. Entire libraries are filled with material on each of these presidents.
Professor Sabato has researched many sources in preparing The Kennedy Half Century and he encourages his students to do the same. But note again, that you are not required to purchase any of these works.
All the course materials you will need to be successful in this introductory class will be contained within the video lectures once the course opens in October.