Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)


Education and Human Development


Throughout my thesis project I have explored how time periods and world events have affected our First Amendment rights in America. The first chapter of my thesis specifically looked into the Cold War era and the various ways the political climate caused First Amendment rights to be abridged. The second chapter of my thesis took this idea one step further. In the next installment of my thesis I researched how the Cold War era created a bridge for the government to infringe on citizens First Amendment rights in the 2000's amidst the crisis of September 11, 2001. Within this topic I specifically looked into the Patriot Act of2001 and the Homeland Security Act of 2002 and how both of these pieces of legislation affected First Amendment rights in America. I have found this to be a very interesting and important topic and I wanted to find a way to give my colleagues access to my findings.

Due to this desire to share my findings with a larger community of educators I chose to create a "virtual teaching valise" for the third installment of my thesis project. In creating this "valise" I wanted to give people a chance to find many different resources revolving around my topic in one place. With this idea in mind, I created a website that can be accessed very easily. On this website educators can find links to both chapters of my original research as well as the bibliographies of sources that go along with the chapters. There are also links to video clips that discuss some of the main topics found in the research. Also on the webpage, there is a list of additional and related reading materials for people who have a further interest in the topic. (A hard copy of this list is also attached) Another resource that can be located on my website would be lesson plan ideas that can help educators teach and share these ideas with students. In each of these lesson plans described below, teachers can use various parts of my research and resources found on the webpage to teach about the topic at hand.

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