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A video overview of world history - History

A video overview of world history - History


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Witness the German invasion of Poland (1939) marking the beginning of World War II

NARRATOR: The 1st of September, 1939 - the Second World War begins with German air raids on Poland. Soon after, the German battleship Schleswig Holstein fires at Fort Westerplatte near Gdansk.

JOACHIM SCHOLZ: "At 4:45 a.m. our postbox was shaking, the windows were rattling, and I knew immediately this is the war. In front of the house, somebody shouted "The war-ship is shooting.'"

NARRATOR: The Nazi propaganda cameras make sure to capture the moment. Inside Gdansk, there is fighting between Germans and Poles. Many are killed.

ELZBIETA MARCINKOWSKA-SZUCA: "We were very sad. Many of our friends were killed. It's appalling that one man can do such a thing to another. It's inhuman, but the war transcends all boundaries."

NARRATOR: For Hitler, it is about more than annexing the areas separated from the German Reich after World War I. He wants to see Poland destroyed, and begins the war with a lie.

ADOLPH HITLER: "Tonight Poland has now attacked for the first time on our own territory - also with regular units."

NARRATOR: Two German army divisions of around 1.5 million men are set to roll over Poland. Britain and France have declared war on Germany, as envisaged in the alliance agreement with Poland. But there is no military assistance for the struggling nation. So the German army quickly penetrates the Polish defenses. Their superiority in tanks and aircraft is crushing. The Polish soldiers fight with desperate bravery.

ALBERT SEFRANEK: "In some cases, columns of Polish horse riders ran against machine gun positions. I even remember a cavalry charge that ran over our first line, but came up directly against tanks. Of course, it was all over."

NARRATOR: After two weeks of war, the Poles know it is a hopeless situation. But they continue to fight and declare Warsaw a fortress. The German Luftwaffe releases its bombs on this city of millions. On September 17, the Red Army invades. Shortly before the war, Hitler and the Soviet dictator Stalin had agreed to divide Poland between themselves. Behind the front, a different war begins. Thousands of Jews, Polish intelligentsia, and other supposed enemies are arrested, deported and executed. After four weeks of war, Warsaw capitulates. The 120,000 Polish defenders surrender the city to the German General von Blaskowitz.

STEFAN CISAK: "We were all broken-hearted, we asked 'What will happen to us? Families will be destroyed, we'll be taken away. We do not know if we will ever return to Poland.'"

NARRATOR: Neither the majority of German soldiers nor the defeated Poles can know what lies ahead.

SEFRANEK: "On the day of the ceasefire, our commander told us 'The war is over, we've won the war.' We did not suspect that the war had only really just begun in earnest."

NARRATOR: Not least the crimes of the occupation, to which millions of Poles, above all Jews, would fall victim.


Leading up to World War II

The devastation of the Great War (as World War I was known at the time) had greatly destabilized Europe, and in many respects World War II grew out of issues left unresolved by that earlier conflict. In particular, political and economic instability in Germany, and lingering resentment over the harsh terms imposed by the Versailles Treaty, fueled the rise to power of Adolf Hitler and National Socialist German Workers’ Party, abbreviated as NSDAP in German and the Nazi Party in English..

Did you know? As early as 1923, in his memoir and propaganda tract "Mein Kampf" (My Struggle), Adolf Hitler had predicted a general European war that would result in "the extermination of the Jewish race in Germany."

After becoming਌hancellor of Germany in 1933, Hitler swiftly consolidated power, anointing himself Führer (supreme leader) in 1934. Obsessed with the idea of the superiority of the “pure” German race, which he called 𠇊ryan,” Hitler believed that war was the only way to gain the necessary “Lebensraum,” or living space, for the German race to expand. In the mid-1930s, he secretly began the rearmament of Germany, a violation of the Versailles Treaty. After signing alliances with Italy and Japan against the Soviet Union, Hitler sent troops to occupy Austria in 1938 and the following year annexed Czechoslovakia. Hitler’s open aggression went unchecked, as the United States and Soviet Union were concentrated on internal politics at the time, and neither France nor Britain (the two other nations most devastated by the Great War) were eager for confrontation.


Witness the beginning of World War I with the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand on June 28, 1914

NARRATOR: Germany at the start of the 20th Century – the Wilhelmine era. Named after this man: Wilhelm the Second, a German Emperor striving for international standing – for himself and his empire. He places his hopes in a sea power, commanding that a fleet be built that is “as beautiful as that of England.” This is the cause of some resentment, and not only in Great Britain. Allies France and Russia are also wary of the emerging power in the center of Europe, which soon stands isolated alongside Austria-Hungary. In May 1913, the crowned heads of Europe meet in Berlin for the wedding of the Emperor's daughter, Victoria. They are almost all related. But this harmonious family image is deceptive. The deployment plans of the general staff are well under way. Above all, the Balkans are a tinderbox in waiting. The Bosnian Serbs push for independence from the Habsburg Empire – from Austria-Hungary. In late June 1914, a Serbian nationalist shoots dead the Austrian heirs to the throne. This is the spark.

OTTO VON HABSBURG: "The whole world order broke down. After this, there was a very strong desire for war in Austria. People had already had enough of the Serbian provocation."

NARRATOR: Following the death of his nephew, the Emperor of Austria hopes to settle scores with the Serbs. But they are allied with Russia. Emperor Franz Joseph sends an envoy to Berlin to request support from his German ally. Kaiser Wilhelm takes a belligerent stance and declares his support in the event of war.

On July 9, 1914, the Austrian artillery opens the bombardment of Belgrade. Can war still be avoided? With Russia also on the move, the Emperor, hoping to avert catastrophe, turns to his cousin, the Russian Tsar Nicholas. But it is too late. Europe teeters into war. On August 1, 1914, the German Kaiser announces the general mobilization from his palace in Berlin.

KAISER WILHELM: "So now the sword must decide. Any dithering, any faltering would be treason to the Fatherland."

NARRATOR: At the beginning there is war euphoria.

KÄTHE RODDE: "Everyone was excited they thought it would be like an excursion, off to Paris and back."

NARRATOR: Many young men volunteer for the front.

GUSTAV-ADOLPH GRAF VON HALEM: "For us young men it was a continuation of a happy game of soldiers, in complete ignorance of the grave nature of an actual war, in which you can be shot dead for real."

NARRATOR: A world war for world power, with 65 million soldiers. The first mechanized war of extermination. It will become the seminal catastrophe of the 20th century.


Why Choose Time4Learning Survey of World History Curriculum?

Parents can supplement our adaptive curriculum and active learning with activities like role-playing, debates and more to keep students engaged. Time4Learning’s survey of world history curriculum was created to provide students with an inside look at what it was like living through a history of war, political upheaval, triumph, struggle and technological innovation.

Our combination of experienced teachers, interactive lessons and entertaining activities provide students with the opportunity to explore different cultures and perspectives from the past and present.

The following are some of the benefits parents and students will appreciate when using Time4Learning’s Survey of World History curriculum.


First Battle of the Marne

In the First Battle of the Marne, fought from September 6-9, 1914, French and British forces confronted the invading Germany army, which had by then penetrated deep into northeastern France, within 30 miles of Paris. The Allied troops checked the German advance and mounted a successful counterattack, driving the Germans back to north of the Aisne River.

The defeat meant the end of German plans for a quick victory in France. Both sides dug into trenches, and the Western Front was the setting for a hellish war of attrition that would last more than three years.

Particularly long and costly battles in this campaign were fought at Verdun (February-December 1916) and the Battle of the Somme (July-November 1916). German and French troops suffered close to a million casualties in the Battle of Verdun alone.


Quick Overview

Curriculum Package

The Curriculum Package includes Exploring World History Part 1 and Part 2, In Their Words (a collection of original source documents), and Guide for Parents. This package gives you all of the lessons and assignments you need to complete the course, but it does not include any review or test material or the recommended literature.

Student Review Pack

The Student Review Pack includes the Student Review, with daily review questions, literature review questions, and Bible commentary the Quiz and Exam Book, with a quiz for each unit and six exams and the Answer Key.

Literature Package

The Literature Package includes the twelve books assigned as part of the English credit. The collection includes five novels, a play, three biographies, and three other non-fiction works.

Exploring World History Bundle

This bundle includes all of the books listed above. You get the Curriculum Package, Student Review Pack, and Literature Package. You'll have everything you need for your student to earn a year of credit in world history, English, and Bible.


See All of World History in One Great Video

It’s pretty much impossible for a video like this to be perfect due to biases and a general lack of data.

Throughout the history of the world, many civilizations have risen and fallen.

You may be familiar with the achievements of prominent societies like the Romans, Mongols, or Babylonians, but how do all of their stories intertwine over time and geography?

Visualizing the History of the World

Today’s video comes to us from Ollie Bye, and it attempts to integrate the histories of all major civilizations known by historians into a single, epic video.

Similar to the Histomap, it’s pretty much impossible for a video like this to be perfect due to biases and a general lack of data. However, it’s still a compelling attempt at showing global history in a short and sweet fashion.

Let’s look at some specific moments on the video that particularly stand out.

750 AD: The Umayyad Caliphate

One of the largest empires in history, the Umayyad Caliphate peaked sometime around 750 AD.

Conquering most of North Africa, the Middle East, and even parts of Europe (including modern-day Spain, Portugal, and France), the Umayyads commanded a formidable territory with an area of 11,100,000 km² (4,300,000 sq. mi) and encompassing 33 million people.

1279: Mongol Dominance

No history of the world is complete without a mention of the Mongols.

Nearby societies have always been on edge when nomadic tribes in the Eurasian Steppe entered into organized confederations. Similar to the Huns or various Turk federations, the Mongols were known for their proficiency with horses, bows, and tactics like the feigned retreat.

Under the leadership of Temüjin ⁠— also known as Genghis Khan ⁠— the Mongols conquered one of the largest empires by land.

The empire reached its greatest extent just two years after the death of Genghis Khan.

Later on, it fragmented into smaller empires that were also quite notable in the context of world history. For example, Kublai Khan — the grandson of Genghis Khan — even went on to begin the influential Yuan Dynasty in China.

The video also shows other vital stats, such as an estimate of global population through the ages.

In the mid-14th century, you can see this number take a rare U-turn, as millions of people die from the infamous and deadly Bubonic Plague.

The Black Death ⁠— one of the most devastating pandemics in the history of the world ⁠— hit Europe in 1346, and it eventually killed 30-60% of the continent’s population. There is no exact figure on the final death toll, but historians estimate it to be somewhere between 75 and 200 million people throughout Eurasia.

1418: The Age of Discovery

The video also provides a 10,000-foot view of the Age of Discovery, a period of time in which European powers explored the world’s oceans.

This colonial period marks the beginning of globalization, creating wide-ranging impacts that set the stage for more modern history.

In the video, it’s possible to see European colonies develop in all parts of the world, as well as how they eventually morphed into the countries that dot the globe today.

Playing the History Game

While it is certainly ambitious, not everyone will agree that this is a successful attempt at portraying world history – even in the limited scope of time allotted.

One key detail that seems to be missing, for example, is showing the development of the indigenous societies that existed in North America for thousands of years. That said, it’s also not clear what data and records are available to show these maps over many centuries of time.

Despite the possible flaws, the video does pack a lot of information into a short period of time, creating a compelling opportunity for learning and discussion. Like the Histomap, it may not be a definitive history of the world – but instead, it’s a useful attempt that stimulates our appetite for more information about the world and the societies that inhabit it.

This first appeared in Visual Capitalist here. This article is being republished due to reader interest.


World History: Ancient and Modern World History Facts

Culturalresources.com: A guide and index with more than 25,000 links to the History of ALL of Western Civilization. Topics include Archeology -- Architecture -- Art -- Dance -- Film -- History Literature -- Music -- Photography -- Religion/Philosophy -- Science - - Biblical & Antiquity -- Greece -- Rome -- Medieval Renaissance -- Baroque -- Classic -- Romantic -- 20th Century -- Internet Technical Information and Software Downloading Sites

Eyewitness - History Through the Eyes of Those Who Lived It: Here is a ringside seat to history - from the Ancient World to the present. History through the eyes of those who lived it.

History World: Choose to read any History either in its Plain Text version (quicker to read, and you can print them out) or in Interactive form - an ongoing project covering major historical events throughout history.

Info Please: World History: An annotated timeline of history with images - from the formation of the Earth to the present.

World History Timeline: To find out more about the history of the world, choose from the continents on a map to view a timeline with dates and a one sentence of what happened on that date.

Trivia about the History of the World

A historian is a scholar who writes about and studies history.

*Herodotus,a fifth century Greek historian, is considered to be the "father of history" because he was the first historian to collect facts and study world history.

*Thucydides has been called the father of "scientific history".

*Historians have divided world history into timelines so that mankind can study and learn about a particular period of history.

*Throughout world history many well-known historians have lived so that mankind can study and learn about a particular period of history.

The History Channel: Each month the History Channel takes new explorations into the past and puts them on display for you, utilizing state-of-the-art interactive technology listen to speeches drawn from the most famous broadcasts and recordings of the Twentieth Century. The History Channel Time Machine brings you to a different speech every day trivia quiz fact of the day games

Educational History Powerpoints

Educational History Videos

The Biographic Dictionary: Covers more than 33,000 notable men and women who have shaped our world from ancient times to the present day- SEARCHABLE by keyword

Encyclopedia Smithsonian: Encyclopedia Smithsonian features answers to frequently asked questions about the Smithsonian and links to Smithsonian resources from A to Z

Information Please: On-Line Dictionary Encyclopedia Almanac, and MORE

Who2: Find famous people biographies fast! This site also lists links to more information about each person. - SEARCHABLE by keyword


99 Free Courses to Teach Yourself World History

With new technology making the world more interconnected every day, it can be beneficial no matter what field you work in to have a good idea of the history of not only your own country but those around the world. These open courses will help you to learn about history in diverse countries and time periods to give you a well rounded knowledge of the social, political and intellectual history that has shaped the modern world.

These courses cover world history as a whole or address multiple areas under their topic of study.

  1. The World Since 1492: This course focuses on four major areas of world history: the struggles between Europeans and colonized peoples the global formation of capitalist economies and industrialization the emergence of modern states and the development of the tastes and disciplines of bourgeois society.[MIT]
  2. The Economic History of Work and Family: Check out this course to learn about the changing roles of men and women in labor, in the factory and in the home. The course focuses on Europe and America, but addresses these issues in non-Western areas as well. [MIT]
  3. Econ and World History: In this course, you will learn about both the historical and the economic changes in the world since ancient civilizations first began trading and selling goods. [WGU]
  4. Monarchs, People and History: This course will help you learn about the origins and reasons for the monarchy and the role it played in the history of Europe and around the world under European imperialism. [UMass Boston]
  5. A Comprehensive Outline of World History: Use this course to learn about world history from 8000 BC to 1900. [Connexions]
  6. Topics in Culture and Globalization: Here you'll learn about the impact of globalization and how it has affected nations around the world, in the past and today. [MIT]
  7. Economic History: Take a look at this course to examine important elements of economic history from the rise of industrialization to the movement into consumer culture today. [MIT]

These helpful courses will give you a good background on American history, from its discovery to its present day role in the world.

  1. American History to 1865: Check out this course to learn about American history from the colonial period to the Civil War. [MIT]
  2. The Emergence of Modern America: 1865 to Present: This course examines the events that shaped and influenced the emergence of modern America. [MIT]
  3. Riots, Strikes, and Conspiracies in American History: These events can be traumatic ones. Take this course to learn how they impact American history politically and socially. [MIT]
  4. The American Revolution: Here you'll get a focused education on the intricacies of the American Revolution from beginning to end. [MIT]
  5. The Civil War and Reconstruction: Learn more about this particularly tumultuous period in American history, from the events that brought it about to the eventually reunification of a nation. [MIT]
  6. The Places of Migration in United States History: Through this course you'll learn not only about the U.S. but about the experience of immigrants from all over the world as they arrived and began new lives. [MIT]
  7. America in Depression and War: Take this course to gain a better understanding of the events of the Great Depression and World War II. [MIT]
  8. Gender and the Law in U.S. History: If you're interested in learning more about the relationship between women and the legal system, you'll get a great survey in this course. [MIT]
  9. American Urban History I: Through this course, you'll examine the importance and growth of urban centers in the U.S. from 1850 to the present. [MIT]
  10. American Consumer Culture: Ever wonder how today's consumer culture and the idea of the "good life" came to be? Check out this course to examine the process historically and thematically. [MIT]

Give these courses a try to gain a better understanding of the history of Europe as well as its interactions with the rest of the world.

  1. The Emergence of Europe: 500-1300: This course will cover a wide range of European history, including the crusades and various other conquests. [MIT]
  2. The Renaissance: 1300-1600: Learn more about this period in European history when the arts and intellectual pursuits flourished. [MIT]
  3. France 1660-1815: Enlightenment, Revolution, Napoleon: This course can be a great way to learn more about the history of France, with lessons in changes in intellectual and political thought. [MIT]
  4. The Royal Family: Through this course, you can learn a great deal about the British royal family from 1714 to the present. [MIT]
  5. The Age of Reason: Europe in the 18th and 19th Centuries: Here you will learn more about the emergence of science and mathematics in Europe. [MIT]
  6. European Imperialism in the 19th and 20th Centuries: Check out this course to learn about British imperialism from Polynesia to India. [MIT]
  7. The Making of Modern Europe, 1453 to the Present: From the age of Machiavelli to the fall of the Soviet Empire, this class will give you a good overview of European history. [Berkeley]
  8. The Rise and Fall of the Second Reich: Take this course to learn about German history in the period between the Holy Roman Empire and WWI. [Berkeley]
  9. Nineteenth Century Europe: This course will take you through European history from 1815 to 1900. [UMass Boston]
  10. Modern Irish History from 1800 to Present: Give this class a try to learn about the rise of Irish nationalism and the eventual establishment of national independence. [UMass Boston]
  11. Welsh History and Its Sources: Through this course, you'll learn about Welsh history and learn what institutions are responsible for discovering and preserving this information. [OpenLearn]
  12. Arthurian Literature and Celtic Colonization: This course will focus on the mythology of King Arthur but will also show how these legends relate to the very real historical events happening in England, Brittany, Wales and Scotland. [MIT]

USSR and Russia

These courses will help you learn more about Russia, from the medieval era all the way up to the 1990's.

  1. The Making of Russia in the Worlds of Byzantium, Mongolia, and Europe: This course will delve into the influences that shaped Medieval and early modern Russia. [MIT]
  2. Imperial and Revolutionary Russia, 1800-1917: This course analyzes Russia's social, cultural, political heritage. [MIT]
  3. Soviet Politics and Society, 1917-1991: Through this class, you will learn about the Soviet empire, Communism, and the shift to democracy. [MIT]
  4. Cold War Science: Look through the material provided by this course to learn more about the science that helped foster the space race and nuclear paranoia during the Cold War. [MIT]

Ancient and Medieval

Travel far back in time with these courses that focus on history from ancient civilizations and those during the dark ages.

  1. The Ancient World: Greece: This course will examine the history of Greece from the Bronze Age up to the rule of Alexander. [MIT]
  2. The Ancient World: Rome: Examine the rise and fall of the Roman empire through the use of primary sources and other historical documentation. [MIT]
  3. The Making of a Roman Emperor: Here you can learn more about the Roman emperors Augustus and Nero. [MIT]
  4. The Ancient City: This course will focus on urban architecture in Greece and Rome, using current and past archaeology as a starting point. [MIT]
  5. Medieval Economic History in Comparative Perspective: Learn more about the social and economic changes in medieval Europe and its connections to Islam, China and central Asia. [MIT]
  6. History of the Roman Empire: Trace the history of ancient Rome from its beginnings to its downfall in this course. [Berkeley]
  7. The Ancient Mediterranean World: This course will address the early civilizations of Egypt, Greece and Babylon. [Berkeley]
  8. The Dark Ages: Here you will learn about Europe and the near East from the fall of the Roman Empire until 1000 AD. [UMass Boston]
  9. Introduction to Ancient Greek History: Through this course you'll learn about Greek political, intellectual, and creative achievements from the Bronze Age to the end of the classical period. [Yale]

With some of the largest economies in the world and billions of inhabitants, Asian countries can't be ignored. These courses will help you learn more about them to help you become more culturally and politically savvy.

  1. East Asia in the World: Check out this course to learn about the interactions of east Asian countries (Korea, China, Japan and Vietnam) with the rest of the world and each other. [MIT]
  2. Japan in the Age of the Samurai: History and Film: Here you will learn about Japan from the 12th to 19th centuries and the many films that use samurai culture as a subject. [MIT]
  3. Smashing the Iron Rice Bowl: Chinese East Asia: This interesting course will help you to learn more about the everyday experience of Chinese people living through the changes that took place during the 19th and 20th centuries. [MIT]
  4. The Making of Modern South Asia: This course is a survey of Indian culture and history from 2500 BC to the present. [MIT]
  5. Women in South Asia from 1800 to Present: Learn more about the experiences of women in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka throughout history. [MIT]
  6. From the Silk Road to the Great Game: China, Russia, and Central Eurasia: In this course you will learn about the interactions across the Eurasian continent between Russians, Chinese, Mongolian nomads, and Turkic oasis dwellers during the last 1,500 years. [MIT]
  7. A Passage to India: Introduction to Modern Indian Culture and Society: Using films, short stories and novels, this course will attempt to give students a better understanding of the origins of modern Indian culture from the development of a caste system to the effects of globalization. [MIT]
  8. East Asian Cultures: From Zen to Pop: This course will examine the historical and contemporary culture of East Asia, including performance, manga, cuisine and more. [MIT]
  9. International Relations of East Asia: Learn about the effects of nuclear firepower and large scale economies in East Asia's power players relations with the rest of the world through this course. [MIT]
  10. Japanese Politics and Society: Here you will get a fundamental understanding of Japanese history, culture, politics and economy. [MIT]
  11. Government and Politics of China: Through readings and other materials, this course will help students gain a better understanding of modern China, both in the pre-Communist years and today. [MIT]

The Middle East

Because of its role in recent conflicts and dominance in the production of oil, many people have a lot of preconceived notions about the Middle East. These courses will help you learn about this region more fully, to gain a better understanding about its history and cultural influence.

  1. Islam, the Middle East, and the West: Here you can get a good overview of the major events from the rise of Islam to the present day, with lectures on the interactions with the Middle East and the West. [MIT]
  2. The Middle East in 20th Century: If you want to understand more about this region, including Egypt, Turkey, the Arabian Peninsula and the Fertile Crescent, you'll get a great background from the Ottoman Empire up to the attacks of 9/11. [MIT]
  3. Jewish History from Biblical to Modern Times: From the beginnings of Judaism to the present day, you'll learn about numerous aspects of Jewish history from this course. [MIT]
  4. Anthropology of the Middle East: Through this course, you will learn about traditional performances in the Middle East as well as historical perceptions of the Orient, religion, politics and more. [MIT]
  5. Islamic Societies of the Middle East and North Africa: Religion, History and Culture: Ranging from the Middle East to North Africa, this course will examine the spread of Islam and its impact on past and present politics, culture and society. [Notre Dame]
  6. Seminar on Politics and Conflict in the Middle East: Here you'll get an in-depth discussion on the evolution of the current political and power structures in the Middle East. [MIT]
  7. Women in Islamic Societies: This course will address both the historical position of women in Islamic societies as well as that which they hold today. [Notre Dame]

Latin America

These courses will help you to understand the emergence and political structure of today's Latin American countries.

  1. Modern Latin America, 1808-Present: Revolution, Dictatorship, Democracy: Check out this course to learn more about the history of Latin America, including its role in the global economy, indigenous cultures and more. [MIT]
  2. Political Economy of Latin America: In this course, you'll learn about the politics of economic reform in Latin America, with lessons on places like Venezuela, Mexico and more. [MIT]
  3. Introduction to Latin American Studies: Read through the materials offered by this course to learn about the history, culture and lived experiences of the diverse people in Latin America. [MIT]

Learn more about this large and diverse continent through these free courses.

  1. AIDS and Poverty in Africa: This course addresses the emergence of the AIDS virus in Africa and its present day impact as well as the overwhelming poverty that afflicts many areas. [MIT]
  2. Dwellings for Africa:Learn more about the history and contemporary existence of dwellings in South Africa through this course. [Connexions]
  3. Exploring a Romano-African City: Thugga: Go back to Roman Africa with thiscourse that provides historical and archaeological information. [OpenLearn]
  4. Information and Communication Technology in Africa: Through this course you'll learn about the emergence of technology in Africa and the effects it has had on urban life. [MIT]
  5. Medicine, Religion and Politics in Africa and the African Diaspora: You'll not only learn about contemporary African beliefs in this course, but the history of many groups of African people and their interactions with western medicine. [MIT]

Scientific History

These courses will help you to learn more about the emergence of modern science and technology.

  1. Introduction to Environmental History: Through this course, you will learn how people have interacted with their environment in the period after Columbus. [MIT]
  2. Modern Physics: From The Atom to Big Science: Learn how physics has played a role in politics and world history through this free course. [Berkeley]
  3. History of Public Health: This course will help you to learn about ideas and policies in public health have changed over the years. [Johns Hopkins]
  4. People and Other Animals: Gain a more thorough understanding of the interactions between man and other species through this course that examines current and past conflicts and events. [MIT]
  5. Nature, Environment, and Empire: This course addresses the relationship between the study of natural history by Europeans and Americans, and concrete exploitation of the natural world at home and in colonies. [MIT]
  6. Psychology History Timeline: Learn more about the evolution of the study of psychology in this course. [OpenLearn]
  7. EngineeringApollo: The Moon Project as a Complex System: In this class, you'll get a chance to learn about the historical events that led up to the successful moon landing. [MIT]
  8. Environmental Conflict and Social Change: Check out this course to learn how environmental issues have impacted cultures around the world. [MIT]
  9. Toward the Scientific Revolution: Here you can learn about the theories, thinkers and discoveries that preceded the scientific revolution. [MIT]

History of Art and Thought

Through these courses, you can gain a better understanding of the origins of modern theories, politics, art and more.

  1. History of Western Thought, 500-1300: This course will help you to learn more about intellectual traditions from the fall of the Roman Empire to the Middle Ages. [MIT]
  2. From Print to Digital: Technologies of the Word, 1450-Present: Trace the history of the written word from the earliest printing presses to today's web technology. [MIT]
  3. Musée du Louvre: Learn more about how the impressive collection at the Louvre came to be through this course's historical exploration. [OpenLearn]
  4. History of Western Art and Civilization: Going country by country, this course will discuss the artistic and intellectual movements of Europe from the Roman era forward. [OpenLearn]
  5. Ancient Philosophy and Mathematics: Try out this course to learn about the foundations of ancient mathematics and to examine ideas of reason, logic and rationality. [MIT]
  6. European Thought and Culture: Ideas like religion, independence, capitalism and more are examined in this course that focuses on the modern era. [MIT]
  7. Foundations of Western Culture I: Homer to Dante: This course will provide an extensive reading list that will help you understand the cultural and political underpinnings of western culture from the Roman empire to the Renaissance.[MIT]
  8. Foundations of Western Culture II: Modernism: Part two of this course focuses on literature from the 17th to 20th centuries, examining the changes that occurred and the intellectual shifts. [MIT]

War and Revolution

Wars and revolutions have played a major role in shaping the world as we know it today. Learn more about these events, their causes and even how to possibly prevent them from happening again in these courses.

  1. Comparative Grand Strategy and Military Doctrine: This course looks at the military strategies of Britain, France, Germany and Russia in the 19th and 20th centuries. [MIT]
  2. How to Stage a Revolution: This course examines the reasons why and the methods by which a society stages a revolution with nations around the world used as examples. [MIT]
  3. Civil War: Through this course you will learn about the origins and effects of civil war in places like the Balkans, Africa and more. [MIT]
  4. World War II: Check out this course to educate yourself on the causes and events of WWII and the eventually beginnings of the Cold War in the post-war era. [UW]
  5. War and American Society: Find out about the various ways that war has affected American citizens and culture through this course. [MIT]
  6. Nazi Germany and the Holocaust: If you want to learn more about the reality of the National Socialist Party, this course is a great way to dive into issues of which you may not have been aware. [MIT]
  7. Civil-Military Relations: This course will lay out some of the basic tensions that arise between citizens and military past and present. [MIT]
  8. Causes and Prevention of War: Using World War I, World War II, Korea, Indochina, and the Peloponnesian, Crimean and Seven Years wars as examples, this course will look at ways that war can be avoided. [MIT]
  9. French Revolution: Here you can learn about the origins of the French Revolutions and the bloody aftermath that followed. [OpenLearn]

Group Specific

These courses focus on a specific group within a larger area to give you a focused view of their historical experience.


Course Content

Influenced by the Understanding by Design® (Wiggins and McTighe) model, this course framework provides a description of the course requirements necessary for student success.

The AP World History: Modern framework is organized into nine commonly taught units of study that provide one possible sequence for the course. As always, you have the flexibility to organize the course content as you like.

Unit Exam Weighting
Unit 1: The Global Tapestry 8%–10%
Unit 2: Networks of Exchange 8%–10%
Unit 3: Land-Based Empires 12%–15%
Unit 4: Transoceanic Interconnections 12%–15%
Unit 5: Revolutions 12%–15%
Unit 6: Consequences of Industrialization 12%–15%
Unit 7: Global Conflict 8%–10%
Unit 8: Cold War and Decolonization 8%–10%
Unit 9: Globalization 8%–10%

Historical Thinking Skills

The AP World History: Modern framework included in the course and exam description outlines distinct skills that students should practice throughout the year—skills that will help them learn to think and act like historians.

Skill Description
1. Developments and Processes Identify and explain historical developments and processes.
2. Sourcing and Situation Analyze sourcing and situation of primary and secondary sources.
3. Claims and Evidence in Sources Analyze arguments in primary and secondary sources.
4.Contextualization Analyze the contexts of historical events, developments, or processes.
5.Making Connections Using historical reasoning processes (comparison, causation, continuity and change), analyze patterns and connections between and among historical developments and processes.
6.Argumentation Develop an argument.

AP and Higher Education

Higher education professionals play a key role developing AP courses and exams, setting credit and placement policies, and scoring student work. The AP Higher Education site features information on recruitment and admission, advising and placement, and more.

This chart shows recommended scores for granting credit, and how much credit should be awarded, for each AP course. Your students can look up credit and placement policies for colleges and universities on the AP Credit Policy Search.


Watch the video: 4 Die Einteilung der Weltgeschichte in Epochen (June 2022).


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