Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

Programs for Teachers

Ashbrook for Teachers

Master of Arts Programs

Focused on the study of original historical documents and offered on a schedule convenient for working professionals, the Ashbrook Center’s Master of Arts programs in American History and Government are designed for teachers, community college faculty, K-12 curriculum planners, legislative staffers, and others with a professional or personal interest in the history and government of the United States.

Master of Arts in American History and Government (MAHG)

The MAHG program is an integrated program built around the reading and discussion of original documents. In doing so, the program aims to give students the subject mastery and interpretive skills necessary for further study, research, and scholarship in the fields of American history and government.  Courses are open to students seeking continuing education graduate credit or those enrolled in the degree program.

A MAHG class with Dr. Steven Hayward

The courses are offered both as intensive one-week seminars in the summer and as seven-week-long online courses in the spring and fall.  Each course is for two semester credit hours.

The summer seminars are conducted on the campus of Ashland University in Ashland, Ohio. Participants are housed on campus in air-conditioned accommodations with meals provided by Ashland University’s award-winning student dining, free wi-fi available campus-wide, and full access to Ashland’s library and recreation center.

The faculty teaching in the program come from not only Ashland’s renowned Department of History and Political Science, but from esteemed institutions from across the nation from Boston College to the University of Houston, from the University of Virginia to the University of Colorado.

For more information and to apply, visit

Master of Arts with a Specialization in Teaching American History and Government (MASTAHG)

The MASTAHG program is a new degree program designed for secondary school personnel assigned to teach college-level coursework, such as dual-credit classes.  It blends graduate-level coursework in the best practices of curriculum and instruction with advanced content in American history and government.

Like the MAHG program, courses are conveniently offered in the summer and online during the regular academic year.

For more information and to apply, visit

Teacher Seminars

The Ashbrook Center and Liberty Fund have partnered on a series of seminars for teachers of American history and government.  These seminars allow a select group of teachers to gather together and have in-depth discussion about key texts and ideas relating to the topic of preserving constitutional self-government.

Each seminar is conducted over the course of a weekend. Participants have their meals and lodging covered and receive a modest stipend to help offset travel expenses.

Past seminar topics include the ratifying conventions of Massachusetts, Virginia, and New York, and the presidencies of George Washington, James Madison, and Abraham Lincoln.

For more information on upcoming seminars, please visit

Teaching Resources

Document Library

The Ashbrook Center has compiled a vast amount of original historical documents in our ever-expanding online Document Library on our sister site,  The documents in our online library are offered to students and teachers alike as a means of learning about American history from the original sources, the speeches and letters of those who have shaped our past and aimed us toward our future. All of the documents located there are free for use by anyone with an interest in the subject and may be printed and forwarded on to others.

Lesson Plans

Partnering with the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Ashbrook Center has developed a wide range of web-based lesson plans for middle school and secondary school teachers in American history. Developed by distinguished professors and master teachers from across the nation and with a wide variety of subjects from the American Revolution to the Civil War and Reconstruction to the Cold War, these lesson plans are free to use.  Many of them also feature online interactive features such as timelines and maps.

We the Teachers Blog

In the summer of 2012, the Ashbrook Center opened We the Teachers, a blog dedicated to providing teaching resources to history and government teachers.  The blog provides regularly updated posts highlighting not only the resources found on our own sites, but many of the best resources, lesson plans, and professional development opportunities offered by leading history and civics education groups and government agencies.

Detail of Howard Chandler Christy's "Scene at the Signing of the Constitution of the United States"

Online Historical Exhibits

The Ashbrook Center and Professor Gordon Lloyd of Pepperdine University have created several online exhibits at to provide a deeper look into the events and personalities that defined our nation during our Founding years.

  • Constitutional Convention – This exhibit covers the meetings and men who, over the course of four months, wrote the Constitution that remains the law of the land well over 200 years later. Included on the site is a day-by-day summary of the meetings of the Convention, a narrative of the events as a four-act drama, biographies of all the delegates, James Madison’s notes on the Convention, and an interactive daily attendance record. This exhibit is the most comprehensive historical record of the Constitutional Convention on the web.
  • The Federalist-Antifederalist Debates – This exhibit delves into the vigorous public debate that arose from the decisions made by the delegates of the Constitutional Convention, splitting America into two groups: those who supported the new Constitution (the Federalists) and those who opposed it (the Antifederalists). This is the story of that debate and how the United States is still guided by these opinions offered over 200 years ago.
  • The Ratification of the U.S. Constitution – This exhibit examines the process of ratification that took place after the conclusion of the Constitutional Convention in 1787 both “in-doors” in the ratifying conventions of the 13 states and “out-of-doors” in newspapers and pamphlets. The site provides an explanation of the six stages of ratification, biographies of the key figures, an interactive map, and in-depth studies of the key states: Virginia, Massachusetts, and New York.