» Course Focus
American well-being was built by innovators who had ideas, took
risks, were often described as crazy, and gave us cheap electricity,
airplane, the Internet, the iPod, biotech medicines, and so much else.
And it will be sustained in the 21st century by innovation.
But how does innovation happen?
We seek answers by tracing the origins of the critical idea... and the
obstacles to its emergence as a practical benefit. For example...
• What was there in the cultural climate that helped or hindered this
• How did the innovator's character shape the outcome?
• What was the role of money - where did it come from and what did it
do? And did the innovations "pay their way?"
» Course Modules
Licensing available for the complete course or individual
I. FUELING AMERICA'S GROWTH
• Conquering the Currents
• Electrifying America
II. PUTTING MONEY TO WORK
• Trading with Strangers
• Banking for the People
III. MERCHANDISING INSPIRATION
• Making Guns and Cars
• Creating Markets for Women
• Exporting Ideas
IV. CONNECTING PEOPLE
• Shrinking the Globe
• Reporting without Deadlines
V. MULTIPLYING BRAINPOWER
• Empowering Business
• Empowering People
VI. DISCOVERING OURSELVES
• Changing Our Lives
• Making Drugs from Genes
» Course Components
1. They Made America by Harold Evans
profiles the innovators who shaped the way we live. “History that
provokes as well as instructs,” said one review.
2. The PBS television series of the same name, inspired
Evans book, edited for educational use and enhanced with web resources.
3. An electronic text of important readings and documents, selected under the direction of Executive Editor Harold Evans and Senior Editors Daniel Kevles and Ruth Schwartz Cowan with the assistance of an advisory committee of prominent scholars. The readings illustrate and amplify the themes of Making It New.
4. A project website containing additional materials for course instructors and students.
» Course Development
Making It New is under
the direction of Harold Evans, the author of the study of innovators
used in the course, and writer/chief commentator for the television
Evans, also the author of The
American Century, has been a Harkness Fellow at Chicago and
Stanford universities, and was president and publisher of the Random
House Trade Group from 1990 to 1997.
Serving as Project Director is Dr. George A. Colburn, a pioneer in
developing media-based courses for higher education that utilize
high-profile television series.
Colburn has produced more than 20 of these
national media courses in his career, in addition to his work as
a documentary writer and producer.