University Grade Inflation: Private vs. Public Sector

20 04 2010

According to a recent study, grade inflation has been faster at private colleges in the United States than at the public universities. See here.

I’m not certain what this means. My hunch is that the faster rate of inflation at private unis has something to do with the higher tuition fees charged by private universities: people are paying big bucks, so they expect an “A”. A student mentality is replaced by a customer mentality.

Do differences in the rate of grade inflation at universities matter? I’m not convinced they do. When Canada’s road signs were changed from Imperial to Metric in the 1970s, there was a zero impact on the highway death rate because the speed limits were kept basically the same. (It helped that they changed the signs on all roads at roughly the same time, so drivers wouldn’t mistake 100 km/h for 100 m.p.h.) When you drive into the Republic of Ireland from the United Kingdom, there are signs reminding you that the speed limits in that country are in km/h, not miles per hour.

So what happens if one jurisdiction, be it a highway authority or a university, uses a different system of measurement than its neighbours? Provided everyone can do rough conversions, it shouldn’t be an issue. Some people think it is a big problem if a 70 in chemistry at one university has a different value than it does elsewhere. But grad and law school admission officers looking at transcripts from different undergraduate institutions will likely know who uses Metric and who uses Imperial.

I’m a bit more concerned when some disciplines give out more As than other departments in the same institution. The optical illusion of higher grades may encourage the weaker students to change their majors, much like the dieter who decided to replace the old-fashioned bathroom scale with one that gives weight in kilograms. This is isn’t good for the student, for society, or for the discipline that attracts the weak students.

This is an abstract of a study by Paul Anglin and Ronald Meng, “Evidence on Grades and Grade Inflation at Ontario’s Universities”.

“Using information on first-year university grades from across Ontario, we examine whether or not there has been grade inflation by discipline. In a survey of seven universities for the periods 1973-74 and 1993-94, we find significant grade inflation in various Arts and Science programs. The rate of inflation is not uniform. Some subjects, such as Mathematics experienced little or no change in average grades at most universities, while English and Biology experienced significant grade inflation.”





The History of Western North America (Course Outline)

18 04 2010

I’m posting the outline of one of the course I’m going to be teaching between September and December 2010.

49th Parallel at Waterton Lake, Alberta. Image Courtesy of David Derrick.

Note on picture: Governments have removed vegetation along the border to increase their control over the lives of their citizens. The “border vista” extends for three metres on either side of the border and is maintained by the employees of the IJC.  This picture illustrates the highly artificial nature of the Canada-US border and the two “nations” it separates.

From the course outline: “The official title of this course is the History of the Canadian West. However, my lectures will deal with western North America as a whole. It is impossible to understand the history of western Canada without knowing about events south of the border. The 49th parallel transects biomes, traditional aboriginal territories, and natural economic communities. Despite the best efforts of governments based in the eastern time zone to exercise control over the border, animals, drugs, and illegal migrants continue to flow across it.

Many westerners dislike the border and the central government power it represents. Some First Nations regard the border as illegitimate. Anti-Ottawa sentiment is common among the whites of western Canada. In Alberta, many right-wing people believe that they have more in common with their American neighbours than with central Canadians. Some ecologists in BC and the Pacific North West have dreamt of establishing a new nation called “Cascadia”. Separation from Canada remains a topic of conversation in Alberta.

Cascadia

Anti-central government sentiment is also pronounced in the American West. In some cases, this sentiment translates into outright secessionism. Alaska has a political party devoted to independence from the United States. The husband of politician Sarah Palin was once a member of this party. In other cases, dislike of Washington takes the form of hostility to specific federal government policies and strong regional or state identities. Arizona Senator Barry Goldwater once said that he would be happy if the whole eastern seaboard of the United States fell into the Atlantic Ocean. During the Presidency of George Bush, it is not unknown for Californians travelling overseas to tell people that they are from “California” rather than “the U.S.”.

The American West has been the birthplace of many protest movements of both the political left and the political right. Some of these protest movements crossed the border and became part of western Canadian political history.

There is a strong libertarian movement in western North America. Western libertarians tend favour policies such as low taxes, unrestricted immigration, the right to carry handguns, and the legalization of divorce, homosexuality, pornography, drugs, gambling, and prostitution.

There are some very right-wing people in western North America. At the same time, the environmental, Native rights, and gay rights movements have also been strong in western North America. The first openly gay municipal politician in North America was elected in San Francisco. Greenpeace was created in Vancouver. Irrigation and other environmental policies are central to politics in the west. Western North America is fascinating to me as a historian because political extremes have clashed there so often. The sheer ethnic diversity of the region is also interesting to study.

Deadwood, Dakota Territory, 1876

Louis Riel after his capture, 1885

Chinese Head Tax Certificate

Garden in Vancouver's Chinatown

Vancouver-based Greenpeace Protesters at Oilsands Facility in Alberta

The course explores major topics in the political, social, and economic history of western North America. As a vehicle for teaching these broad themes, I have adopted a “history through biography” approach, so each lecture revolves around the life and times of an individual. The men and women who are the subject of my lectures come from diverse social groups and historical epochs.”

To see the rest of the course outline, click here.





My Teaching Last Week

30 03 2010

HIST 1407 (Canadian History Survey Course)

My lecture on Monday was about Canadian history from 1984 to 1993. I spoke about the following issues: the pre-1983 career of Brian Mulroney; the 1984 election; the nature of the “Mulroney Coalition”; the 1988 Free Trade election (I showed a clip from the 1998 leaders’ debate); the Meech Lake and Charlottetown Accords; Elijah Harper; the Oka Crisis; the emergence of the BQ; the Somalia Affair (there are some great images and video clips available online!); the judicial politics of abortion; Canada’s policies towards the apartheid regime in South Africa; Kim Campbell. I also devoted a fair bit of time to the environmental policies of Brian Mulroney because environmental history is one of the themes of this course.

Brian Mulroney in 1984

My lecture on Wednesday was on an even more recent period of history, 1993-2003. My major focus was on the 1995 Referendum and the subsequent Clarity Act and sponsorship programs. I showed video clips from the night of the referendum. The video clips really captivated the attention of the class. Most of students were born in roughly 1991. I also spoke about Jean Chrétien’s life before 1993, Paul Martin’s career as Finance Minister, and NAFTA.

HIST 4165

4th Year Seminar on BNA in the Age of Confederation

Fenian Raid Medal

We listened to five student research presentation this week. A number of students have selected topics related to what one student has called the War on Fenianism in the 1860s.

Fenian Raids Monument, Toronto, 1890

We heard two presentations on the assassination of McGee and a presentation on the Fenian Raids.

Committee of Safety Minutes, 1866, Page 1, Welland, Canada West

We also heard a student present on the impact of railway construction on the town of Stratford Ontario.

Grand Trunk System Map

Perhaps the most entertaining presentation related to the abolition of public capital punishment in Canada in the late 1860s. That student has discovered some great primary sources related to her topic!

A Canadian Hanging





My Teaching This Week

8 03 2010

Undergraduate Teaching

HIST 1407 (Canadian History Survey Course)

My lecture on Monday was on the history of the automobile in Canada. I talked about the origins of the car industry, tariffs and the branch plant economy, pioneers in the field, unions and industrial relations, the origins of the Rand Formula, Canadian-American relations, the 1965 Autopact, the growth of Japanese car manufacturing in Ontario.

My lecture on Wednesday was on “Canada in the 1960s”. I spoke about Canada’s external relations, but my main focus was the relationship between Quebec and the rest of Canada. I began my lecture by talking about Jean Lesage the Quiet Revolution. I pointed out that English-speaking Canada experienced its own Quiet Revolution between 1945 and 1971. I related the “Other Quiet Revolution” to the diplomatic career of Lester Pearson. I spoke about Pearson’s elusive quest for a majority government. Other topics covered in the lecture included bilingualism and biculturalism, the establishment of medicare,   and flag debate.  The students enjoyed my anecdote about President Lyndon Johnson telling Lester Pearson not to piss on his rug. (Pearson had criticized the US war in Vietnam in a speech delivered in Temple University in Philadelphia). I also showed the following video, which many students found rather amusing.

On Monday, I handed some marking back to the students. The assignment I returned was based on two episodes of the Nature’s Past podcast. I designed this assignment as a way of introducing the students to the vast and rapidly growing body of literature on Canadian environmental history.

The assignment was as follows:

“Historians are increasingly using podcasts as a vehicle for research dissemination. Although podcasts will never replace peer-reviewed publications such as the Canadian Historical Review, they are becoming an important way of learning about the past. In the field of Canadian history, the best example of academic podcasting is Nature’s Past, a series of documentaries released every month by NiCHE, the Canadian Network in History and the Environment. The Nature’s Past podcasts typically feature an interview with the author of a recent publication on Canadian environmental history. This assignment requires you to listen to episodes 3 and 8 of Nature’s Past. Then write a three-page description that answers these questions.

1)    Who is the host? What sorts of people are his guests? Are they credible sources of information? What distinguishes these people from other potential sources of information on the internet?
2)    Do the guests mention the primary sources that they used to research environmental history? What special challenges do environmental historians face in doing their research?

3)    Does knowing about a historian’s sources change your assessment of his or her credibility?

4)    What is the central argument that each guest is making?
5)    Based on these two podcasts, what can you say about environmental history and environmental historians?
6)    Is environmental history about the environment, people, or both?
7)    Why do you think that historians get interested in environmental history as opposed other sub-disciplines (e.g., gender history, military history)? How did each guest become interested in his or her particular topic?
8)    Has this podcast increased your interest in environmental history?”

I will probably design assignments around podcasts in the future. Most students did an adequate job of summarizing the two podcasts.  Most students said that they had been unaware of the existence of environmental history prior to doing this paper. Some students said they really liked the concept of environmental history and wanted to learn more in their upper-year history courses. A majority, however, said that they weren’t that interested in environmental history. One student wrote: “I’m more of a couch potato, but I guess if I was into camping and hiking, I would like environmental history.”

HIST 4165

Our seminar reading this week dealt with the entrance of British Columbia and PEI into Confederation. We read  W.L. Morton, The critical years : the union of British North America, 1857-1873 (Toronto : McClelland and Stewart, 1964), 223-263; Paul Phillips, “Confederation and the Economy of British Columbia” in British Columbia and Confederation (Victoria: University of Victoria, 1967); Rusty Bittermann, Margaret McCallum “Upholding the Land Legislation of a ‘Communistic and Socialist Assembly’: The Benefits of Confederation for Prince Edward Island” Canadian Historical Review (2006): 1-28. We also talked about the lives and times of  Amor De Cosmos and Anthony Musgrave (the students read their short biographies in the Dictionary of Canadian Biography).

Graduate Teaching

In my directed readings course with an MA student, we discussed secondary sources related to the history of the Canada-US border in the Great Lakes region:  Karl Hele,  “Manipulating Identity: The Sault Borderlands Métis and Colonial Intervention.” In The Long Journey of a Forgotten People: Métis Identities and Family Histories , ed. David T. McNab (Waterloo: Wilfrid University Press, 2007); David R. Smith, “Structuring the permeable border : channeling and regulating cross-border traffic in labor, capital, and goods” and John J. Bukowczyk “Trade, war, migration, and empire in the Great Lakes basin, 1650-1815” in Permeable border : the Great Lakes Basin as transnational region, 1650-1990 (University of Calgary Press, 2005).

In my graduate seminar, we discussed the following readings: Robin Winks, The Civil War Years: Canada and the United States (MQUP, 1998); Roger L. Ransom, “The Economics of the Civil War”, EH. Net Encyclopedia; Joe Patterson Smith, “American Republican Leadership and the Movement for the Annexation of Canada in the Eighteen-Sixties,” CHAP, 1935.





My Teaching This Week

26 02 2010

Undergraduate Teaching

HIST 1407.

I delivered two lectures this week in my Canadian history survey course for first-year students. On Monday, I spoke about Canadian history from 1945 to 1963.  The major personalities discussed in my lecture were Louis St-Laurent, C.D. Howe, Maurice Duplessis, and John Diefenbaker. The lecture ended with Lester Pearson becoming Prime Minister in April 1963. I attempted to present a fair and balanced picture of Diefenbaker by stressing his good points, including his opposition to apartheid in South Africa. I felt that it was useful to provide a corrective to all of the Diefenbaker-bashing the students may encounter in secondary sources later in their academic careers. In writing my lecture, I strove to achieve the right balance between Canada’s internal affairs (post-war prosperity, suburbanization, federal-provincial relations, the development of the welfare state, legislation related to race and ethnicity) and external affairs (the Middle Power Project, the golden age of Canadian diplomacy, Korea, Canadian reactions to the Cuban Missile Crisis, Suez, and, of course, Lester Pearson’s Nobel Peace Prize).   I poked fun at Barack Obama’s recent Nobel Peace Prize, contrasting it with Pearson’s award, which was given for actual rather than potential accomplishments.

Canadians Wait to Vote, 1957 Federal General Election

Louis St-Laurent and Mackenzie King in San Fransisco, 1945

Diefenbaker with the Canadian Bill of Rights

Recently Enfranchised Natives Vote in Federal By-Election, 1960

My lecture on Wednesday dealt with Newfoundland’s history from the 1850s to its Confederation with Canada.  The most important figure discussed in this lecture was Joseph Smallwood, the man who brought Newfoundland into Confederation. I did not, however, neglect earlier periods of Newfoundland history, including the rejection of Confederation in the 1860s, Canada’s renewed offer of union, the French shore question and other fisheries issues, the devastating impact of First World War, the growth of mining and pulp and paper development, and railway construction. I also spoke about Commission Government.

I use Facebook to communicate with students in this course in between lectures. I sent the following FB message to my students.

“As you know, a major theme of the course is Canada’s relationship with two great Empires, the British Empire and the empire of the United States, which is, in many ways, the successor of the British Empire, even though few Americans will admit it. In my lectures, I have shown how Canada has struggled to assert its national autonomy in the shadow of these big empires. Canadian history can be seen as story of “colony to nation”. A more pessimistic interpretation is “colony to nation to colony”, the idea that Canada has merely exchanged one imperial master for another. You will have to decide for yourself which viewpoint is most accurate. Exams in HIST 1407 often have a question on this theme.

Although it certainly wouldn’t be on the exam, I thought that you might be interested in an article that recently appeared in the New York Times, “Like Rome Before the Fall? Not Yet” by Piers Brendon. The author discusses the predictions that the Empire of the United States is about to collapse. Anyway, I thought you might find it interesting.”

In my fourth-year seminar on British North America in the time of Confederation, this week’s focus was on Manitoba’s entry into Confederation. Our readings were: Gerry Friesen, “The Métis and the fur trade, and the Red River settlement, 1844-70” in The Canadian Prairies: A History, pp.91-128; Nicole St-Onge, “Saint-Laurent, Manitoba: Evolving Métis Identities,1850-1914”. The students enjoyed discussing the political implications of the decline of the buffalo population in western Canada.

Paul Kane, "Assiniboine Hunting Buffalo" 1851-6

Métis with Red River Carts, 1860

We also listened to a student presentation on the life and times of Donald Alexander Smith, Lord Strathcona.

D.A. Smith, 1820-1915, the Richest Man in the British Empire at the Time of His Death

We also did an in-class document study: I distributed an article on affairs at Red River that appeared in the Toronto Globe on 12 March 1870, which generated a lively discussion.

Graduate Teaching

In my graduate seminar this week, we discussed The Company : a Short History of a Revolutionary Idea by John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge. The students also announced that their group project is well underway: their website on the history of the Montreal Telegraph Company is now under construction and should be complete by the end of March.





Why Are Textbooks So Expensive?

17 02 2010

For an American’s answer to this question, see here. In Canada, the costs can be even higher due to the small size of our market.





My Teaching This Week

15 02 2010

My Teaching This Week

HIST 1407: Canadian History Since Confederation

Monday’s lecture dealt with Canada in the 1930s. I focused on the devastating impact of the Great Depression and the Smoot-Hawley Tariff. I showed how the lacklustre response of the two main political parties in Canada to the Depression contributed to the rise of new political parties at both the federal and the provincial level. In the lecture, I strove to balance my discussion of the causes of the Depression (the bursting of a stock market bubble, the rise of protectionism, inappropriate monetary policy), high politics, and the impact of the Depression on ordinary people. (I found some great anecdotes in Barry Broadfoot’s oral history of Canada in the 1930s).  In the last part of the lecture, I spoke about Canadian foreign policy in the 1930s with a particular emphasis on the rise of aggressive dictatorships in Japan, Italy, and Germany. The period covered by the lecture ended with the German invasion of Poland in 1939. My  comments in lecture about protectionism in the US in the early 1930s sparked an interesting debate amongst the students about the controversial Buy American Policy and Canada’s elephant-and-mouse relationship to the USA.

Wednesday’s lecture was all about Canada’s role in the Second World War. I stressed that Canada entered the war much earlier than the United States and played an absolutely crucial, albeit indirect, role in the survival of Britain in 1940. At the start of the lecture, I stressed that Canada did _not_ go to war to help the Jews of Europe and that anti-Semitism was, in fact, widespread in Canada. I showed that the whole issue of the Holocaust was pretty peripheral to Canada’s war and that it was only many years after the end of the conflict that Canadians started to see the war as being a crusade to stop a genocide. (I like to point out to students that as late as 1993, the world stood by while a genocide took place in Rwanda).  In writing the lecture, I tried to strike the right balance between talking about the actual fighting overseas, the politics of the war as it unfolded around Mackenzie King’s Cabinet table, and the impact of the war on different groups in Canadian society (women, Japanese-Canadians, Quebec, trade unionists). I emphasized that the roots of the post-war welfare state came out of the Second World War and showed a wartime newsreel about the creation of the Baby Bonus.

RCAF Planes Fly Over England, 1941

Landing at Juno Beach, 1944

A Canadian sailor prepares to hoist the Union Jack on the expropriated Japanese-Canadian fishing boat KUROSHIMA NO.2, New Westminster, British Columbia, Canada, 29 December 1941

Sudbury, 1942. Mining for Victory

Fourth-Year Seminar

Our focus this week was on opposition to Confederation after 1867. We discussed the reasons why so many people in Nova Scotia and Newfoundland opposed Confederation.  We read the following secondary sources: Phillip Buckner, P.B. Waite and William Baker, “The Maritimes and Confederation: A Reassessment” Canadian Historical Review 71 (1990): 1-45; D.C. Harvey, “Incidents of Repeal Agitation in Nova Scotia” Canadian Historical Review (1934): 48-57; H.B. Mayo, “Newfoundland and Confederation in the 1860s” Canadian Historical Review (1948): 125-142.    We also read several articles on the Nova Scotia secession agitation published the New York Times in 1868 (for an example, click here)

Graduate Teaching
In my seminar for Master’s students, we discussed the following readings: JoAnne Yates, “The Telegraph’s Effect on Nineteenth Century Markets and Firms,” Business and Economic History 15 (1986): 149-163; Ian Radforth, “Confronting Distance: Managing Jacques and Hay’s New Lowell Operations, 1853-1873,” Canadian Papers in Business History 1 (1989): 75-100; Naomi R. Lamoreaux, Daniel M. G. Raff, and Peter Temin, “Beyond Markets and Hierarchies: Towards a New Synthesis of American Business History,” American Historical Review, 108 (2003): 404-33.





My Teaching This Week

27 01 2010

HIST 1407: Canadian History Since 1867

I devoted two lectures to the First World War. Monday’s lecture focused more on events overseas (European diplomacy, alliances, living conditions in the trenches, key battles), while the lecture on Wednesday was mainly about events in Canada (the politics of war, conscription, Regulation 17, war production, profiteering, income tax, railway nationalization).

Teaching about the First World War is a treat because it allows me to use fantastic images from the LAC collection as part of my Powerpoint. Here are some examples of the images I used.

German and Canadian Soldiers Working Together to Remove Wounded From Vimy Ridge

Here is another good image, taken on the same day:

Wounded at Vimy

Munitions Factory

Consider this photo of a woman participating in the war economy:

Or this great photo:

Anti-Conscription Protest, Victoria Square, Montreal, 1917

I was also able to show lots of great war time propaganda posters. The LAC some great items in their collection, including:

and

and

and

4th Year Seminar on British North America and the Age of Confederation

Our focus this week was on BNA reactions to the Civil War. Our readings  were: S.F. Wise, “The Annexation Movement and Its Effect on Canadian Opinion, 1837-67” in Canada views the United States : nineteenth-century political attitudes, edited  by S.F. Wise and Robert Craig Brown (Seattle : University of Washington Press, 1967); Robin Winks, Canada and the United States: the Civil War Years (Baltimore : Johns Hopkins Press, 1960), chp. 2, 3. We also listened to two excellent student presentations on the lives of Sir Charles Hastings Doyle and Garnet Joseph Wolseley.

Wolseley

In seminar, I had my students take 15 minutes to read two primary sources.

The first was Lincoln’s famous 1862 letter to the New York Tribune newspaper.

Lincoln

Source: The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln edited by Roy P. Basler, vol. 5, “Letter to Horace Greeley” (August 22, 1862), p. 388.

“Executive Mansion,
Washington, August 22, 1862.
Hon. Horace Greeley:
Dear Sir.
I have just read yours of the 19th. addressed to myself through the New-York Tribune. If there be in it any statements, or assumptions of fact, which I may know to be erroneous, I do not, now and here, controvert them. If there be in it any inferences which I may believe to be falsely drawn, I do not now and here, argue against them. If there be perceptable in it an impatient and dictatorial tone, I waive it in deference to an old friend, whose heart I have always supposed to be right.
As to the policy I “seem to be pursuing” as you say, I have not meant to leave any one in doubt.
I would save the Union. I would save it the shortest way under the Constitution. The sooner the national authority can be restored; the nearer the Union will be “the Union as it was.” If there be those who would not save the Union, unless they could at the same time save slavery, I do not agree with them. If there be those who would not save the Union unless they could at the same time destroy slavery, I do not agree with them. My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that. What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union; and what I forbear, I forbear because I do not believe it would help to save the Union. I shall do less whenever I shall believe what I am doing hurts the cause, and I shall do more whenever I shall believe doing more will help the cause. I shall try to correct errors when shown to be errors; and I shall adopt new views so fast as they shall appear to be true views.
I have here stated my purpose according to my view of official duty; and I intend no modification of my oft-expressed personal wish that all men every where could be free.
Yours,
A. Lincoln.”

I then had the students read an editorial about Lincoln’s letter to Greeley that appeared in the Toronto Globe, 28 August 1862.

This generated a good discussion of Canadian attitudes to the Civil War.





My Teaching This Week

15 01 2010

First-Year Course (Canadian History Survey)

On Monday, I spoke in lecture about the 1885 Rebellion. I showed this video clip.

I also asked the students to look at this “Heritage Minute” about the execution of Louis Riel.

On Wednesday, the class was visited by a guest speaker, Ashley Thomson, the university librarian responsible for history and allied subjects. Mr Thomson gave a very useful talk on techniques for researching an essay. I think that the students profited from his discussion of library databases.

4th Year Seminar on Canada in the Era of Confederation

The focus of this week’s seminar was on the place of religion in British North America. We listened to student presentations on the lives and times of John Strachan, the Anglican Bishop of Toronto, and Ignace Bourget, his Catholic counterpart in Montreal. I showed the students some pictures of Notre-Dame Basilica in Montreal.

We then discussed Roberto Perin, “Elaborating a Public Culture: The Catholic Church in Nineteenth-Century Quebec” in Religion and Public Life in Canada : Historical and Comparative Perspectives edited by Marguerite Van Die (Toronto : University of Toronto Press, 2001), 87-105 and William Westfall, “Constructing Public Religions at Private Sites: The Anglican Church in the Shadow of Disestablishment” in Religion and Public Life in Canada : Historical and Comparative Perspectives edited by Marguerite Van Die (Toronto : University of Toronto Press, 2001), 23-49.

Caricature of Charles Darwin, 1871

We also talked about how Canadians reacted to the publication of The Origin of Species in 1859.  This part of our conversation as based on Suzanne Zeller, “Environment, Culture, and the Reception of Darwin in Canada, 1859-1909” in Disseminating Darwin: Place, Race, Class, and Gender, ed. Ron Numbers and John Stenhouse. (Cambridge University Press, 1998), 91-122.

I helped to frame our discussion of the article by showing a trailer of the new film Creation.


Graduate Teaching

In my graduate seminar, the students discussed the following readings: J.M.S. Careless, The Union of the Canadas : the Growth of Canadian Institutions, 1841-1857 (Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1967); Jean-Guy Rens, translated by Käthe Roth, The Invisible Empire : a History of the Telecommunications Industry in Canada, 1846-1956 (Montreal: McGill-Queen’s, 2001), chapter 1;  Brian Young and Gerald Tulchinsky, “Sir Hugh Allan,” Dictionary of Canadian Biography.

I also met with my MA student  to discuss Pat Hudson’s History by Numbers: an Introduction to Quantitative Approaches (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000).  I’m teaching this student some quantitative techniques she can apply to the records of the trading post she is studying. 





Great Blog Post on Riel

8 01 2010

Sean Kheraj, who is teaching a course on Western Canadian history, has posted some great images and video clips related to Louis Riel to his blog.  Check it out!








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