U.S. Constitutional History; Equality, Freedom, Liberty ... â€¢ Goss v. Lopez, 1975 â€¢...
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UIL Social Studies 1
U.S. Constitutional History; Equality, Freedom, Liberty, and Rights
UIL Social Studies 2016 – 2017 The United States Constitution was not only a historic accomplishment for the 18th Century; it also still stands as an exemplar to fledging democracies in our modern world. Despite being written in relatively sparse and direct language for such a significant and long-ranging document, it is still the subject of contentious debate and even longer-ranging interpretations. Charting the ebb and flow of such debates is a vital part of United States history and key to understanding the nature of government.
The U.S. Constitution was controversial even before it became the supreme law of the land. The idea of creating a structure of government that could balance the need for a strong central force to guide and protect a nation of millions of individuals while at the same time respecting the rights of those individuals still seems daunting. Today, many historians, pundits, and students spend years trying to interpret the exact meaning and intention of the early Americans who crafted our Constitution. They hope to find a truer sense of meaning by nailing down what each contributor was thinking at the time of its inception. In truth, the very individuals that penned the Constitution debated the meanings of the words included within it. The issues of debt assumption, a national bank, a standing army, voting rights, freedom of the press, and the limits of legislative, executive, and judicial powers were all intensely argued within the first full decade of the Constitution being ratified.
The process of amending the Constitution provides the means by which it can continue to adapt to an ever-
growing and changing nation of increasing diverse individuals. This mechanism has been rarely applied considering the rapid evolution of our country, which speaks to the importance, and impact of each of those changes. The more regular process used for interpreting an almost 250 year-creation is the decisions handed down by the Supreme Court. Every year they wade through hundreds of attempts to redefine or refine the rights and powers included with the seven articles and twenty-seven amendments that make up the structure of our nation’s government.
The Constitution continues to be the center of several hotly contested political and social issues. Election cycles tend to bring many of these issues to the forefront of media coverage and societal consciousness, but the debates never really go away as every week brings new legislation being proposed, every court session brings new cases being decided, and literally ever day provides new opportunities for the implementation and administration of government programs bringing unforeseen constitutional issues bubbling back to the surface.
There is some overlap with this year’s topic and previous years (Supreme Court, Executive Branch, Revolutionary Period), but this topic is unique in that it focuses on the history of the U.S. Constitution from its creation to today. Although the primary reading source focuses mainly on the events leading up to the creation of the U.S. Constitution and its initial impact upon defining the role of government, the contest will cover issues from the entire history of this document as well as patterns and periods of various interpretations.
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PURPOSE OF THE CONTEST: The purpose of the Social Studies Contest is to challenge high school students to read widely and deeply in the areas of social studies. Particularly, students will be required to:
• expand and apply their understanding of the nature of geography and the physical setting of the earth to physical and cultural environments.
• expand and apply their understanding of the governmental systems. • expand and apply their understanding of historical trends, movements and eras, the impact and
significant of time and place, cause and effect, and change over time TEST DIRECTIONS: Students have a maximum of 90 minutes allowed for the test. A student may choose to turn in the test early. Students should be assigned a test number and instructed to write the number on all test materials including essay papers. After the signal to start, time remaining signals can be given as long as they do not distract from the taking of the test. A 5 minutes remaining signal should be given to remaining test-takers. The objective portion of the test may be machine graded or hand graded. The contest director may select coaches of contestants to assist in grading. Answer Key Errors: The answer key shall be confirmed by the graders or grading committee. In the case of an error on the answer key of an objectively scored contest, graders should notify the UIL State Office of the nature of the error and/or contact the respective state contest director to seek clarification. Mistakes in the answer key should be corrected, and papers should be judged on correctness rather than on an incorrect answer given in the key. Scoring: The objective portion of all tests will be scored. A judge or judges will then evaluate the essays of the eight contestants with the highest scores in the objective portion of the test. If a tie occurs for the eighth slot, then essays of contestants tied for the eighth slot will be judged. Each essay will be read and assigned a score based on a zero to 20 scale, with 20 being the highest score possible. The score will be added to the point total from the objective portion of the test, resulting in an overall score. Ties: Individual Competition - All ties shall be broken through sixth place. If a tie exists after the grading of the essays, then those essays involved in the tie will be judged one against the other(s) to break the tie. When a tie occurs, those contestants who are tied shall be awarded a place before any other places are awarded. The decision(s) of the judge(s) is final.
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Contest Test Organization Details There are no major changes in the format of the test for the 2016-2017 school year. As in past years, the test will be divided into three sections, each with differing numbers of questions with various point values. The specific nature, in terms of subject, number of questions, and point values is as follows: Section One – Questions will be based on specific terms from the accompanying list U.S. Constitutional History related People and Terms
20 questions; one point each Section Two – Questions based on Primary Reading Selection Madison’s Gift: Five Partnerships That Built America, by David O. Stewart 15 questions; two points each Section Three – Questions based on information about Supplemental Reading Materials Founding Documents and Landmark U.S. Supreme Court Cases • Marbury v. Madison, 1803 • McCulloch v. Maryland, 1819 • Gibbons v. Ogden, 1824 • Barron v. Baltimore, 1833 • Charles River Bridge, 1837 • Dred Scott v. Sandford, 1857 • Munn v. Illinois, 1877 • Plessy v. Ferguson, 1896 • Lochner v. New York, 1905 • Schenck v. United States, 1919 • Gitlow v. New York, 1925 • New York Times Co. v. Sullivan, 1964 • Griswold v. Connecticut, 1965 • Miranda v. Arizona, 1966 • Tinker v. Des Moines, 1969 • San Antonio ISD v. Rodriguez, 1973 • Lemon v. Kurtzman, 1971 • Roe v. Wade, 1973 • Goss v. Lopez, 1975 • Bakke v. Regents of the University of California, 1978 • New Jersey v. T.L.O., 1985 • Hazelwood v. Kuhlmeier, 1988
• Texas v. Johnson, 1989 • Santa Fe Independent School District v. Doe, 2000 • Near v. Minnesota, 1931 • West Coast Hotel v. Parrish, 1937 • West Virginia State Board of Ed.v. Barnette, 1943 • Everson v. Board of Education, 1947 • Brown v. Board of Education, 1954 • Mapp v. Ohio, 1961 • Baker v. Carr, 1962 • Engel v. Vitale, 1962 • Gideon v. Wainwright, 1963 • Fisher v. University of Texas, 2015 •Utah v. Strieff, 2015 • Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, 2015 Amendments: 1-10, 14, 27 Federalist Papers: 1, 10, 39, 51, 78, 84
10 questions; three points each
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Rules and Tips for Writing an Essay for the UIL Social Studies Contest
Contestants who do not write an essay will be disqualified. Any essay that does not demonstrate a sincere effort to discuss the assigned topic will be disqualified. The rankings of essays will be based primarily on how well the topic has been addressed. A focused, concise and specific essay beats a vague and rambling essay. Proper grammar and organization should be used to aid clarity, but should not be considered a major factor in scoring. Cover as many corners of the issue as practical. Avoid including personal editorialized opinions, as more than enough information on the subject has been published.
The essay is a critical portion of the UIL Social Studies contest. It reveals a student’s ability to analyze and synthesize events and issues rather than simply regurgitate data. The purpose of the analytical essay is to make meaning of a particular event or artifact, to provide the reader with a more full and clear understanding of the subject. Contestants should not lose sight of the simple fact that the essay score accounts for 20% of the total possible points available to be scored. In highly competitive contests a mere few points on an essay question will determine the difference between first place and not placing in the top six. A quality essay is a key ingredient of success in the social studies contest! Tips on writ