Historical Research and Writing

Through Historical Research and Writing, students will learn about choosing a topic, composing research questions, effective research methods, drafting, composing, and revising. These skills will be taught with an emphasis on historical research, allowing students to engage in analysis of primary and secondary sources, discover interesting insights in history, and partake in the active pursuit of understanding the importance of the historical study.
Designed for

Students who are interested in the writing a historical research paper


High school students

Class format

One-on-one and small group (Max. 7 students/class)

Class Introduction

This course provides students with an introduction to history as an academic discipline, including methods of historical inquiry, how to formulate research questions and conduct research, and understanding debates in the field of history


After completing the course, students are expected to reach the following goals:

  • Understand the history discipline
  • Understand the different types of sources with which historians work
  • Formulate a question for a research paper
  • Draft an outline and write a research pape

Course content


Carr, Edward Hallett. What Is History? 1961. Reprint, New York: Penguin, 1990.Chapter 1.

Esherick, Joseph W. “Deconstructing the Construction of the Party-State: Gulin County in the Shaan-Gan-Ning Border Region.” The China Quarterly 140 (December 1994): 1052–79.

Mullaney, Thomas S., and Christopher Rea. Where Research Begins: Choosing a Research Project That Matters to You (and the World). Chicago, Ill.: University of Chicago Press, 2022.Chapter 1.

Smith, Anthony D. The Nation in History: Historiographical Debates About Ethnicity and Nationalism. Hanover, New Hampshire: University Press of New England, 2000.Chapter 2.

Note: All required texts will be provided to students by the instructor in PDF format before the beginning of the course

Course schedule

1What is history?
  • Formulating research questions
  • Writing essays
  • Creating outlines
  • Understanding the structure of historical knowledge production
  • Conducting literature reviews
  • Utilizing digital tools to organize information
3Individual student meetings with the instructor
4Examine the historical debate about nationalism
5Individual student meetings with the instructor
  • Explore multi-source, multi-method research
  • Student presentations
  • Individual student meetings with the instructor 

Students and their parents will receive brief feedback after each class, via Teachworks, regarding the student’s general participation in class. Students will also receive feedback on graded assignments via email. At the end of the course, the student will receive a final report card, which thoroughly speaks to their overall participation in the course, including major assignments.


4 group classes (2 hours each) and 7 one-on-one class (1 hour each) 

Spring 2023 Courses are open!

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