Online Class: American Civil War

A self-paced online history course setting forth the major political issues and philosophies that prepared the stage for the Civil War, sustained the conflict, and continue to linger on to this day in the hearts and minds of most Americans.

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  • 12
    Lessons
  • 27
    Exams &
    Assignments
  • 1,778
    Students
    have taken this course
  • 13
    Hours
    average time
  • 1.3
    CEUs
 
 

Course Description

Course Overview: Understanding the American Civil War

The American Civil War, often referred to as the War Between the States, stands as a testament to a time when a burgeoning nation's ideals, values, and very identity were deeply contested. This was not merely a clash of armies, but a profound struggle of ideologies, where family members found themselves on opposing sides, fueled by convictions and beliefs deeply rooted in the cultural, political, and economic fabric of the nation.

The United States, a young republic carved out from the ideals of liberty and democracy, found itself on the brink of dissolution. Key issues included the fierce debate over states' rights versus federal authority, the ethical, economic, and political facets of slavery, and ultimately, the overarching question of the Union's preservation.

Statistics paint a haunting picture of the Civil War's devastation: more American lives were lost in this conflict than in any other war before or since. The weight of its significance extends beyond numbers, as it sowed seeds of sentiments and beliefs that continue to resonate in American discourse today. For instance, the resonance of the Civil War can be felt in contemporary discussions on federal vs. state authority, racial equity, and regional identities.

This comprehensive course endeavors to provide an in-depth exploration into the pivotal moments, battles, and figures of the Civil War. We will traverse the timeline, uncovering the intricate web of political and social factors that culminated in this colossal conflict.

Lesson 1. Civil War Terminology and Course Structure

  • Dive into the essential vocabulary and overarching framework of the course to set a solid foundation for the subsequent modules.

Lesson 2. Setting The Stage: America's Path to Civil War

  • Delve into the events and sentiments leading up to the war, exploring the multifaceted causes that set the nation on this tumultuous path.

Lesson 3. The War Begins

  • An intricate look into the first salvos of the war, exploring the initial strategies and conflicts that set the tone for the battles ahead.

Lesson 4. The War Goes West

  • Understand the strategic importance of the Western Theater and how it played a pivotal role in shaping the war's progression.

Lesson 5. Escalation of Battles, 1862

  • A focused study on the major battles of this year, their significance, and their implications on the broader conflict.

Lesson 6. Battles of 1862, Continued

  • Continuing our deep dive into the crucial battles of 1862 and their reverberating impacts.

Lesson 7. The Decisive Battles of 1863-64, Battle of Chancellorsville

  • Dissect the strategies, outcomes, and broader ramifications of this seminal battle in the war's narrative.

Lesson 8. The Decisive Battles of 1863-64, Battle of Gettysburg

  • Uncover the intricacies of this turning point in the Civil War, its heroes, its strategies, and its enduring significance.

Lesson 9. The Decisive Battles of 1863-64, Battle of Vicksburg

  • Delve into the siege and eventual capture of Vicksburg, and its strategic importance in dividing the Confederacy.

Lesson 10. The End of the War

  • As the tides of war shift, explore the concluding chapters of the Civil War, understanding the paths to peace and the eventual reunification of the Union.

Lesson 11. Notable Figures of the American Civil War

  • Shine a spotlight on the men and women, both renowned and lesser-known, whose actions, decisions, and convictions shaped the course of the war.

Lesson 12. Summary of the Civil War

  • A holistic recapitulation of the Civil War, synthesizing the key takeaways and drawing connections to the present day.

Join us on this enlightening journey, as we navigate the profound depths of the American Civil War, a defining chapter in the annals of the United States. Through this course, students will gain a nuanced understanding, fostering a deeper appreciation for the complex tapestry of American history. Whether you're a history enthusiast, a scholar, or simply curious, this course promises a transformative experience.

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Course Motivation

Discover the American Civil War: A Comprehensive Online Course

Have you ever pondered the war that exacted the heaviest toll on American lives? Ever sought to understand the deep-rooted beliefs that led compatriots to face each other on the battlefield? Curious about modern sentiments shaped by this epochal conflict?

Welcome to the "American Civil War" course, a journey spanning twelve engaging lessons that:

  • Provide a chronological recount of the war's pivotal events
  • Delve into the profound philosophies and disputes igniting the war
  • Highlight the war's enduring impact on today's American psyche
  • Profile iconic figures, underscoring their national contributions

By the course's end, you'll gain a profound understanding of this historical watershed. Suitable for anyone with high-school level reading skills, the course offers comprehensive materials through lessons and over sixty netlinks, eliminating the need for textbooks.

Why study history, especially the Civil War? Many students often view history as distant, yet consider these insights:

  • "The only thing new in the world is the history you don't know." - President Harry S. Truman
  • "The supreme purpose of history is a better world." - President Herbert Hoover
  • "A country without a memory is a country of madmen." - Philosopher George Santayana
  • "History isn't really about the past – it's about defining the present and who we are." - Filmmaker Ken Burns

The Civil War profoundly shapes our present and future, making its understanding paramount.

Dive into this self-paced online course and:

  • Grasp the reasons behind the brutal internal strife
  • Chart the strategies and seminal battles of 1861-62
  • Witness the war's turning points in 1863-64
  • Evaluate the war's denouement and subsequent legacy
  • Familiarize yourself with the era's luminaries

The course unfolds as:

  • Lesson 1: Civil War Foundations & Course Blueprint
  • Lesson 2: Pre-war Tensions: America's Civil War Inception
  • Lessons 3-9: From War's Outset to Landmark Battles
  • Lesson 10: War's Termination
  • Lesson 11: Civil War's Renowned Figures
  • Lesson 12: Civil War Recapitulation

Embrace the course's flexibility, working at your convenience. Engage with your instructor and peers, enriching your learning experience.

Don't delay—enroll anytime. Dive deep into America's past today.

  • Completely Online
  • Self-Paced
  • Printable Lessons
  • Full HD Video  
  • 6 Months to Complete
  • 24/7 Availability
  • Start Anytime
  • PC & Mac Compatible
  • Android & iOS Friendly
  • Accredited CEUs
Universal Class is an IACET Accredited Provider
 

Course Lessons

Average Lesson Rating:
4.6 / 5 Stars (Average Rating)
"Extraordinarily Helpful"
(1,240 votes)

Lesson 1. Civil War Terminology and Course Structure

This introductory lesson will equip students with tools that will make learning about the Civil War more effective. We will go over topics such as civil war terminology, technology, battle names, strategies, and outcomes. Additional lesson topics: The Telegraph and the Civil War; Why didn't George Washington end Slavery?; Lincoln and the Telegraph; Timeline regarding issues leading to the Civil War; America Before the Civil War Video 95 Total Points
  • Lesson 1 Video A
  • Lesson 1 Video B : Introduction Lecture
  • Review Practice Worksheet: TechnologyintheCivilWar.doc
  • Lesson discussions: American History; Reasons for Taking this Course
  • Complete Assignment: Introductions
  • Complete Assignment: The Telegraph and the Civil War
  • Complete Assignment: Was It Worth It?
  • Complete: Why was going to school important for kids during the Civil War? 25 Bonus Points Assignment

Lesson 2. Setting The Stage: America's Path to Civil War

In this lesson we will go over the actual causes of the Civil War such as the controversies surrounding Federalism and states rights, debates over expansionism, effects of modernization, the status of the economy, and the feelings of sectionalism. Additional lesson topics: Civil War Inventions; Causes of the Civil War Video 35 Total Points
  • Lesson 2 Video A
  • Lesson 2 Video B : Causes of the Civil War Lecture
  • Complete Assignment: Causes of the Civil War
  • Assessment: Lesson 2 Exam

Lesson 3. The War Begins

The war begins and both side finalize their divisions by appointing a president, forming an army, and fighting the first battle. Additional lesson topics: Fort Sumter: The Civil War Begins; Brief Doc on Ft. Sumter 35 Total Points
  • Lesson 3 Video A
  • Lesson 3 Video B : Lesson 3 Discussion
  • Review 2 Practice Worksheets
  • Complete Assignment: First Battles
  • Assessment: Lesson 3 Exam

Lesson 4. The War Goes West

Early battle successes for the Confederacy as the initial battles in 1861 over control of the state of Missouri. Battle of Wilson' Creek, Battle of Hemp Bale, Battle of Ball's Bluff and many other battles that took place during this first year. Additional lesson topics: Civil War Battles of 1861; Battles of 1861; A meeting between Lincoln and Southern Officials 35 Total Points
  • Lesson 4 Video A
  • Lesson 4 Video B : Lesson 4 Discussion
  • Complete Assignment: Battles of 1861
  • Assessment: Lesson 4 Exam

Lesson 5. Escalation of Battles, 1862

The strategies that required control of the border states continues into 1862. This lesson will review the major and bloody battles of this year, such as the capture of Ft. Henry, Ft. Donelsone, Battle of Pea Ridge (Elkhorn Tavern), Shiloh, and others. Additional lesson topics: Battle of Seven Pines / Fair Oaks; Battles of 1862 Video 25 Total Points
  • Lesson 5 Video A
  • Lesson 5 Video B : Lesson 5 Discussion
  • Complete Assignment: Battles of 1862

Lesson 6. Battles of 1862, Continued

The Battles continue into 1862 and the remarkable strategies of Confederate General Robert E. Lee shape the outcomes of many bloody battles. Battles of Bull Run (Manassas), Battle of Harpers Ferry, Battle of Antietam ( Sharpsburg), Fredericksburg, and oth 35 Total Points
  • Lesson 6 Video A
  • Lesson 6 Video B : Emancipation Proclamation Lecture
  • Lesson 6 Video C : Lesson 6 Discussion
  • Complete Assignment: The Emancipation Proclamation
  • Assessment: Lesson 5 Exam

Lesson 7. The Decisive Battles of 1863-64, Battle of Chancellorsville

There were many, many battles fought in the next two years of the War Between the States. Of those battles, three are the most prominent and decisive, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, and Vicksburg. The Battle of Chancellorsville will encompass this lesson. Additional lesson topics: Video Interview at Chancellorsville 25 Total Points
  • Lesson 7 Video A
  • Lesson 7 Video B : Chancellorsville Discussion
  • Complete Assignment: Battle of Chancellorsville

Lesson 8. The Decisive Battles of 1863-64, Battle of Gettysburg

There were many, many battles fought in the next two years of the War Between the States. Of those battles, three are the most prominent and decisive were Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, and Vicksburg. The Battle of Gettysburg will encompass this lesson. Additional lesson topics: Tour of Little Round Top; Great video on Gettysburg; Part Several of Several of Tour of Battle of Gettysburg; Animated video of Battle of Gettysburg 65 Total Points
  • Lesson 8 Video A
  • Lesson 8 Video B : Lesson 8 Discussion
  • Lesson 8 Video C : Lesson 8B Discussion
  • Lesson 8 Video D : Lesson 8C Discussion
  • Lesson 8 Video E : Lesson 8D Discussion
  • Lesson 8 Video F : Lesson 8E Discussion
  • Lesson 8 Video G : Lesson 8F Discussion
  • Lesson 8 Video H : Lesson 8G Discussion
  • Complete Assignment: Battle of Gettysburg
  • Complete Assignment: Aftermath of Battle
  • Complete Assignment: Was the Battle of Gettysburg the most important battle in American History?

Lesson 9. The Decisive Battles of 1863-64, Battle of Vicksburg

There were many, many battles fought in the next two years of the War Between the States. Of those battles, three are the most prominent and decisive: Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, and Vicksburg. The Battle of Vicksburg will encompass this lesson. Additional lesson topics: Siege of Vicksburg Video 64 Total Points
  • Lesson 9 Video A
  • Lesson 9 Video B : Vicksburg Discussion
  • Lesson 9 Video C : Lesson 9 Discussion
  • Review Practice Worksheet: WilliamTecumsehSherman.doc
  • Complete Assignment: Battle of Vicksburg
  • Complete Assignment: Was Vicksburg the Key?
  • Assessment: Lesson 6 Exam

Lesson 10. The End of the War

The War between the States comes to a close in 1865 with the Battle of Appomattox Courthouse in Virginia. This lesson will also describe the solemn surrender of General Robert E. Lee to Ulysses Grant, the abrupt assassination of President Lincoln. Additional lesson topics: The Surrender Correspondence at Appomattox; Lee Surrenders 45 Total Points
  • Lesson 10 Video A
  • Lesson 10 Video B : Lesson 10 Discussion
  • Review Practice Worksheet: TheSurrender.doc
  • Complete Assignment: Final Battle
  • Complete Assignment: What if America's Civil War was also fought over religion?

Lesson 11. Notable Figures of the American Civil War

Notable people in the Union and the Confederacy. Additional lesson topics: Important People in Civil War Video 35 Total Points
  • Lesson 11 Video A
  • Lesson 11 Video B : Lesson 11 Discussion
  • Complete Assignment: People in the American Civil War
  • Assessment: Lesson 7 Exam

Lesson 12. Summary of the Civil War

A count of war casualties, additional resources, and a final review exam. Additional lesson topics: Why was nothing learned from the American Civil War -- One person's opinion. 98 Total Points
  • Lesson 12 Video A : Lesson 12 Discussion
  • Lesson 12 Video B : Lesson 12B Discussion
  • Lesson discussions: More American History?; Course Survey; Program Evaluation Follow-up Survey (End of Course); Course Comments
  • Complete Assignment: Technology in the Civil War
  • Complete Assignment: The End
  • Assessment: The Final Exam
592
Total Course Points
 

Learning Outcomes

By successfully completing this course, students will be able to:
  • Summarize the major events and battles related to the American Civil War.
  • Identify the major political issues and philosophies that set the stage for the Civil War.
  • Describe the major issues that still exist today as a result of the Civil War.
  • Identify and describe the major figures of the Civil War.
  • Demonstrate mastery of lesson content at levels of 70% or higher.
 

Additional Course Information

Online CEU Certificate
  • Document Your Lifelong Learning Achievements
  • Earn an Official Certificate Documenting Course Hours and CEUs
  • Verify Your Certificate with a Unique Serial Number Online
  • View and Share Your Certificate Online or Download/Print as PDF
  • Display Your Certificate on Your Resume and Promote Your Achievements Using Social Media
Document Your CEUs on Your Resume
 
Course Title: American Civil War
Course Number: 7550437
Lessons Rating: 4.6 / 5 Stars (1,240 votes)
Languages: English - United States, Canada and other English speaking countries
Availability: This course is online and available in all 50 states including: California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Texas, and Washington.
Last Updated: July 2023
Course Type: Self-Paced, Online Class
CEU Value: 1.3 IACET CEUs (Continuing Education Units)
CE Accreditation: Universal Class, Inc. has been accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).
Grading Policy: Earn a final grade of 70% or higher to receive an online/downloadable CEU Certification documenting CEUs earned.
Assessment Method: Lesson assignments and review exams
Syllabus: View Syllabus
Course Fee: $120.00 U.S. dollars

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Student Testimonials

  • "He made me achieve my best and also had great comments that made me think outside the box. He truly had me thinking more and more about history and how i want to learn more. He knew his subject so well." -- Deborah D.
  • "This course was very helpful." -- Veronica P.
  • "I liked how the instructor always was on the ball getting to the grades and passing me on to the next lesson in a timely manner." -- Velada M.
  • "The instructor has compiled a very informative condensation of the Civil War. He is very propmpt in grading the assignments and the tests. This has been an enlightening experience for me and I am sorry to have the course end. I am hoping that [you] will offer more courses in US history. I would now like to continue on with the reconstruction of the South following the war." -- Sara H.
  • "The entire course was both interesting and informative. I now have a better understanding of the battles and the participants in the battles of the Civil War. However it is a very sad chapter in the history of our nation and so utterly unnecessary. The deaths of the soldiers was just overwhelming to me." -- Sara H.