Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

American Exceptionalism is a long-standing interpretation of American history. This course will examine how Americans are taught and learn American History through schools, popular movies and museum exhibits. We will examine debates over curriculum for different educational levels and discuss the goals that affect the teaching of national history to various age/grade levels. The class will examine several distinct aspects/events of American history from this perspective.

Learning outcome

After completing this course, you:

  • know the concept/theory of American Exceptionalism,
  • can analyze how Americans are taught about the place of the United States within the world,
  • can analyze public history exhibits and film versions of history,
  • understand American educational and political debates and policies regarding patriotism and the teaching of American History,
  • can analyze how identity politics (race, gender…) fits into and challenges the belief in American Exceptionalism,
  • can demonstrate abilities in reading, writing and communicating in academic English, using appropriate tools for documenting your work ethically,
  • can demonstrate analytical abilities in constructing a text in academic English.


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Recommended previous knowledge

It is recommended that you have attended ENG1506 - American Civilization or similar courses.

Overlapping courses

10 credits overlap with ENG4533 - American Exceptionalism


Seminar, two hours per week for 10 weeks, 20 hours in all.

Attendance is obligatory on 8 out of 10 seminars. Additional absences must be justified by documentation to the exam coordinator. There will be arranged two obligatory classroom group activities. Read more about guidelines for obligatory activities.


The exam form is a portfolio (mappe).The portfolio consits of a 2 hour class room exam, and a 5 page paper.

You must submit your final paper in Fronter. Read about the submission procedures  

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English, and you submit your response in English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Reports from periodic evaluations (in Norwegian)

Facts about this course






This course is offered irregularly

Teaching language