Hillsdale College’s Her­itage Room | Wiki­media Commons

Hillsdale College is in the process of releasing an updated edition of its American Her­itage online course this spring.

After first being released in spring 2013, the American Her­itage online course is being refilmed to better provide the expe­rience of the on-campus class that shares its name in the core cur­riculum.

“We decided it was time to reshoot the American Her­itage course, as that was one of our early courses,” Matt Bell, director of pro­grams for external affairs, said in an email. “It needed to be revamped and taped in our new studio, and that’s what we are doing this semester.”

Pro­fessor of History Tom Conner gives the ninth lecture in the 10-week series, “America as World Power,” which covers America’s foreign policy. While the course has the same title as its earlier edition, Conner said he entirely rewrote his part.

“From my stand­point, it was fun to prepare, because when we are teaching for little seg­ments at a time of a course, some­times you miss the forest for the trees — you’re so deter­mined and inter­ested in getting certain material to the stu­dents,” Conner said. “Maybe we don’t pay enough attention to the big, big picture. It was fun to take a fresh look at the subject.”

The success of the online courses comes from the pro­fessors, who take their teaching approach from the classroom into the studio, Bell said.

“The faculty at Hillsdale College are quite remarkable, not only for their expertise, but also for their sincere desire to help every student learn,” he said. “It’s a priv­ilege to work with them on pro­ducing these courses.”

Sophomore LuAnn Townley, a student in Conner’s American Her­itage class, said she believes the course aids in explaining why the country is the way it is and looks at how to prevent past events from repeating.  

“I hope that anyone who watches all 10 seg­ments, or even a few, will come away from the expe­rience with a renewed appre­ci­ation of what it means to be an American,” Conner said. “The past is not nec­es­sarily a sure-fire pre­dictor of the future, but per­spective is never a bad thing to have on the present and this pro­vides that.”