Prof. Mark Carnes’ unique pedagogical approach, Reacting to the Past, was recently highlighted by Process, a blog co-produced by the Organization of American Historians, the Journal of American History, and The American Historian. Prof. Carnes’ innovative teaching method, developed in the early 1990s, requires students to take on personas and beliefs of historical figures, informed by historical texts, and establish games set in the past with the goal of learning skills to apply to solutions to difficult situations.  According to Process, this approach may undertake up to a month of class time, but students “get deeply into their roles”. Read the full story.

Watch the video below, which demonstrates how students experience Reacting to the Past in the classroom:

Prof. Mark Carnes joined Barnard’s faculty in 1982. His academic specialty is modern American history. His courses include The United States: 1940-1975, and several versions of the Reacting to the Past program. He currently serves as Executive Secretary of the Society of American Historians and the executive director of the Reacting Consortium.  He previously served as general co-editor of the 24-volume American National Biography