National History Academy Online is a unique college prep summer experience for rising 10th, 11th, and 12th-grade high school students and recent high school graduates with an interest in civics, civil discourse, and the history of the United States.
National History Academy offers an inspiring and engaging learning environment. Each week, you will immerse yourself in a case developed by Harvard Business School Professor David Moss’s Case Method Institute, delving deeply into major themes of American history with direct relevance with current events. This summer’s cases focus on the Writing of the Constitution, Debt and Democracy, the origins of Public Education and the Pecora Hearings, which looks at government regulation of industry and the sometimes problematic role of Congressional hearings. In addition, you will also visit some of our country’s defining historic sites and hear from expert speakers.
You will engage in rich discussions with other engaged students about these significant periods and events in American history and tie them to the struggles we’re facing now. The Academy utilizes a hybrid of formal and informal learning methods through case discussions, virtual site visits, and lectures by notes leaders and scholars.
The programs will run for one week each, 1:00-3:00 PM EDT Monday through Friday. Each week, you will spend two hours a day in small online classes with students from around the country, led by top high school history teachers. The class days will focus on case preparation with a virtual site visit or guest speaker each week before the final case discussion on Friday.
National History Academy Online builds on the success of our ground-breaking residential program, which has brought students together from all around the country for the summer to study the foundations of our American Democracy. Academy students have come from all 50 states and 20 countries and gone on to top colleges, including Yale, Penn, Ohio State, West Point, Cornell, Columbia, Brown, Williams, Florida, Bowdoin, Rice, Texas, Washington University, Ole Miss, Michigan, and USC.
Our curriculum challenges you to participate and interact with fellow students and explore historic places virtually. Curriculum components include:
Case Method Institute Cases
The Academy High School program uses the case-based History of American Democracy curriculum developed by Professor David Moss. The cases provide an interdisciplinary and contextual examination of key historic events, permitting students to consider the multiple viewpoints of historical debates and to place themselves in the shoes of decision makers.
Virtual Site Visits
The Academy alternates classroom work with virtual visits to the defining sites from American history. You will experience iconic National Parks, presidential homes, and Civil Rights Movement sites, and engage with experts, historians and thought leaders as they give behind-the-scenes access to these important places.
Online Speaker Series
National History Academy hosts guest speakers who are nationally recognized experts in their fields as part of an online speaker series. These speakers supplement the lessons learned in the classroom and during the virtual site visits with real-world examples. Past speakers have included Civil Rights Leader Ernest Green of the Little Rock Nine, American Civil War Museum CEO Christy Coleman, Academy Award-winning actor Robert Duvall, and Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian Curator Cecile Ganteaume.
The Case Method of Learning
- Mount Vernon photo by Thalia Romero via Wikimedia Commons
- Ebenezer Baptist Church Horizon Sanctuary photo by Michael Barera via Wikimedia Commons
- Martin Luther King’s Boyhood Home photo by Mike Fairbanks via Wikimedia Commons
- Wesleyan Methodist Church, Seneca_Falls, NY photo by Kenneth C. Zirkel via Wikimdedia Commons