Introduction to Key Constitutional Concepts and Supreme Court Cases

This course offers an introduction to the U.S. Constitution and landmark Supreme Court cases interpreting it. It explores the Constitution’s origins, its amendment over the years, and methods of constitutional interpretation. Topics include the nature and structure of the federal government, the powers of the federal government, and individual rights.

About The Course

The United States Constitution is a statement of America’s highest law and its deepest values. It is the document and the principles that make one nation and one people out of the several states. But where did it come from? How has it changed over the years? How do we know what it means?

This course, which debuts on Constitution Day, explores those questions. It examines the Constitution’s origins, the problems the Framers confronted and the solutions they adopted. It follows the Constitution’s changes over the years, from the initial burst of amendments that brought us the Bill of Rights, through the bloody disruption of the Civil War, and into the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. It discusses landmark Supreme Court cases that show how the Framers’ ideas have fared in the modern world.

The course provides a broad overview of the Constitution, including both the structure and powers of the federal government and individual rights topics. Cases discussed include Brown v. Board of Education, Gideon v. Wainwright, Miranda v. Arizona, Roe v. Wade, Korematsu v. United States, District of Columbia v. Heller, and NFIB v. Sibelius.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will I get a Statement of Accomplishment after completing this class?
Yes, if you achieve a passing score.

What resources will I need for this class?
All you will need is an Internet connection.

What is the coolest thing I'll learn if I take this class?
What it means to be an American.

Recommended Background

No background is required. Everyone is welcome!