AP World History Syllabus 2015-2016 – Trimester 1
“IF YOU DO NOT READ YOU WILL NOT SUCCEED!!!”
- Every AP History Teacher Ever…
Course Description The goal of any social studies class is to help students to be college, career, and citizenship ready. This
course seeks to accomplish this task by offering a rigorous and relevant look at the history and interconnectedness of the
world. Students will be able to:
1. Analyze documents, textbook materials, and primary and secondary source readings from a variety of cultural
perspectives using complex thinking processes.
2. Write well-evidenced essays on historical topics with clarity and precision.
3. Recall a wealth of information on major events, persons, social processes, ideas, and eras of world history.
4. Prepare for and take the May 12, 2016 AP World History exam for possible college credit.
Course Themes The five course themes below present areas of historical inquiry that should be investigated at various points
throughout the course and revisited as manifested in particular historical developments over time.
Interaction Between Humans and the Environment
Development and Interaction of Cultures
State-Building, Expansion, and Conflict
Creation, Expansion, and Interaction of Economic Systems
Development and Transformation of Social Structures
Required Materials On a daily basis, students should approach this classroom with a “Think like a historian” mindset. In
addition to this, students should have their textbook, a notebook and binder/folder for this class only, flashcards, and a
Learning Materials Students will be given a copy of the textbook (Bentley and Zigler, Traditions and Encounters: A
Global Perspective on the Past, New York: McGraw Hill. 2014) to be brought to class on a daily basis. The teacher will
provide students with supplemental readings, articles, chapters, video clips, and more. Additional texts include the following:
Andrea and Overfield, The Human Record: Sources of Global History
Schwwartz, Wimmer and Wolff, The Global Experience: Readings in World History
Stearns, Gosch and Grieshaber, Documents in World History
Mitchell and Mitchell, Taking Sides: World History (for Debates)
Additional readings to be assigned.
Grading As promoters of lifelong learning, the teachers of this course would rather not assign grades to work. We would
rather place an emphasis on student learning. That said, we are required to give grades, so here’s how we plan on doing this:
Formative Assessments Formative Assessments are the things that help prepare students for academic success.
This is where the learning is formed and opportunities to practice. This is where you see if you get it or not. If you
do get it, you can move on. If you don’t get it, this is where we fix the issue to help you be successful.
Summative Assessments Summative Assessments are the things that measure how well you learned material before
moving on to new items of study. This is where you prove you can do it or you know it. These will occur at the end
of a unit and after the learning has been completed to measure how much was learned. Students may retake
summative assessments within one week of the date they see their score on the assessment, and under the condition
that they have thoroughly completed a new study guide to demonstrate preparation for the assessment. Your new
score will replace your old score.
80% Summative Assessments
20% Formative Assessments
*Grading modifications may be made for students with IEP or 504 plans.
A 73.00 - 100%
A- 70.00 – 72.99%
B+ 67.00 – 69.99%
B 63.00 - 66.99%
B- 60.00 – 62.99%
C+ 57.00 – 59.99%
C 53.00 – 56.99%
C- 50.00 – 52.99%
D+ 47.00 – 49.99%
D 43.00 - 46.99%
D- 40.00 – 42.99%
F 0 – 39.99%
Late Work Because the work we do in the class is preparation for the summative assessments, students
should get their work done on time. If a student has a concern about getting work done on time, they
should speak with the teacher BEFORE the due date. Items not turned in on the due date may receive a 10%
deduction. All items must be turned in for students to pass.
Absent? If a student has an excused absence, she/he has two-days to make up the work per class missed. If
the student knows about an absence ahead of time, arrangements should be made with the teacher to get the
work that will be missed. Students should consult their study groups, learning target sheets, weekly emails,
class website, and/or the teacher for missing work.
Grades will be posted ASAP. Teachers will do their best to make the gradebook as up-to-date as possible.
Students and parents are encouraged to check their grades regularly. If a student has a question about the
overall grade or grade on an individual assignment, she/he should see the teacher before or after class.
Communication Students are encouraged and welcomed to address issues or concerns with their instructor. Selfadvocacy is an explicit skill that will be worked on in this class. While we do understand a need for teachers and
parents/guardians to talk, in most instances, conversations should begin between teacher and student.
Expectations The following values are expected from students on a daily basis:
● Relationships- As part of our classroom community, you should assume positive intentions of everyone and
try to be a good person to those around you
● Respect- You should treat the classroom environment the way you would want to be treated. This includes
your peers, school staff, the room itself, and the ideas and topics that guide our learning
● Responsibility- Because you are in high school, you should take responsibility for action or inaction
● Ethics- You should seek to make good choices based on the norms that govern our school and society
● Awareness- You should take responsibility to know how your decisions and choices affect you and those
Finally… All school and district policies will be followed in this class (including the cellphone policy, so put your
phone away which we both know is out right now...). Also:
1. I want you to be successful. Each student can learn, grow, and develop. My goal is to help you do so. If that
means help you get into an Ivy, great. If that means to help you get to a passing grade, great. We have a variety of
student needs in this class and I hope all students are ready for the next step in their lives. Moreover, while the next
step may not be college, the goal is to prepare you should you decide later to enroll in college.
2. Being equitable is the goal. I hope at the end of the class you feel that you were treated fairly.
3. I want this class to help prepare you for the next level. If your parents/guardians were to call your college
professor, your boss, or your drill sergeant, those people will hang up on them. I will not. I would prefer to initially
deal with you if you have questions or concerns. That said, I recognize that we all have a stake in your success and
they play a valuable role in helping you be successful. So if you are not doing your part, I will contact them and they
can contact me.
4. I’ve never failed anyone who has made a term-long effort to try. I don’t plan on failing anyone in that situation.
Students fail courses because they did not perform at a constant level of what they were capable of. If you do your
best, ask questions, and make a consistent effort, you will be fine.
5. Writing and learning are a process of bettering yourself. I will not give you answers but will help you ask the right
questions and find your answers. If you have questions or concerns, ask!
Course Outline (You can also refer to the trimester reading schedule)
Technological and Environmental Transformations: c. 8000 BCE –600 BCE
Key Concept 1.1. Big Geography and the Peopling of the Earth
Key Concept 1.2. The Neolithic Revolution and Early Agricultural Societies
Key Concept 1.3. The Development and Interactions of Early Agricultural, Pastoral, and Urban Societies
Ch. 2 “Early Societies in SW Asia and the Indo-European Migrations”
Ch. 3 “Early African Societies” (Egypt pp. 57-65)
Ch. 4 “Early Societies in South Asia”
Becoming Human in Worlds Together Worlds Apart: A Companion Reader
Andrea, “The Epic of Gilgamesh”
Simulation: Sumerian Cuneiform
Flood stories from Sumerian and Hebrew traditions
Andrea, “The Judgments of Hammurabi” –write an ancient law code
Guns, Germs and Steel prologue: Historical interpretation activity
Andrea, “The Emergence of Hinduism”
Images of India: Hinduism and Caste
Organization and Reorganization of Human Societies 600BCE -600CE
Key Concept 2.1. The Development and Codification of Religious and Cult. Trad.
Key Concept 2.2. The Development of States and Empires
Key Concept 2.3. Emergence of Transregional Networks of Communication and Exchange
Sept. 21- 30
Ch. 9 “State, Society, and the Quest for Salvation in India”
Ch. 8 “The Unification of China”
Images of India: Rajasthan
Andrea, “China, Three Ways of Thought”
Sima Qian, “The Records of the Grand Historian” (p.147)
Chinese Philosophy round table (Theme 2: Philosophies) (CR 4)
Students will choose one of four Chinese philosophies, Confucianism, Legalism, Buddhism or
Daoism, and meet in a group to determine the main ideas and ideal social/political systems according
to their chosen philosophy. They will then present and justify their philosophy to the class. As they
lay out their ideal society, students will be encouraged to challenge and defend the philosophical
underpinnings of these envisioned societies.
Oct. 1 - Oct. 9
Ch. 10 “Mediterranean Society: The Greek Phase”
Ch. 11 “Mediterranean Society: The Roman Phase”
Andrea, “Hellenic Civilization: A Rational Inquiry Into Life”
Andrea, “The Growth of Christianity”
Project: Roman Newspapers
Debate: “Did the Roman Empire Collapse Under its Own Weight?”
For Debates, students will choose a side and write a position paper based on secondary readings
from “Taking Sides”. They will then support their position in a structured class debate. The topic of
this debate speaks to strengths and weaknesses of empires.
The Later Roman Empire by Averil Cameron
Barbarians and Romans by Derek Williams
Oct. 12 - 23
Ch. 12 “Cross-Cultural Exchanges on the Silk Road”
Ch. 13 “The Expansive Realm of Islam”
Faxian, “Travels in India” (Andrea p. 164)
Five Robed Statues (Andrea 172)
Students will examine five images of classical statues and show examples of cultural diffusion
between Chinese, Indian and Greco-Roman cultural spheres of influence.
600 vs. 700 periodization evaluation activity (Curr. Frame. P.52) This activity requires students to
critically evaluate diverse models of periodization as constructed by historians.
Andrea, “Islam: Universal Submission to God”
Islamic Guest Speaker
Debate: “Is Islamic Fundamentalism a Threat to Political Stability?”
Ch. 7 The Empires of Persia
Read and Summarize
Regional and Transregional Interactions 600-1450CE
Key Concept 3.1. Expansion and Intensification of Comm. and Exch. Networks
Key Concept 3.2. Continuity and Innovation of State Forms & Their Interactions
Key Concept 3.3. Increased Economic Productive Capacity and Its Consequences
Oct. 26 - Nov. 4
Ch. 15 “India and the Indian Ocean Basin” (CR 5c)
Ch. 16 “The Two Worlds of Christendom”
Students will map out Indian Ocean Trade routes including
Regions involved, products traded, and results in terms of cultural
Diffusion (such as Hinduism and Buddhism in SE Asia, and the Swahili language and culture in E
Images of SE Asia: Thailand
Faxian, “Travels” & Zhou Daguan “Cambodia” (Andrea p. 169, 439)
Debate: “Did Christianity Liberate Women?”
Nov. 5 - 13
Ch. 17 “Nomadic Empires and Eurasian Integration”
Ch. 18 “States and Societies of Sub-Saharan Africa”
Ch. 3 (pp. 65-68) Bantu Migrations
“The Journey of William of Rubrick” (Andrea p. 426)
Stearns, “Chinggis Khan and the Rise of the Mongols”
Philip Curtin, “Bantu Language and Migrations”
Luc de Huesch, “Bantu Oral Tradition”
P. S. Garlake, “Great Zimbabwe”
Martin Hall, “The Khoikhoi in Southern Africa”
John Williams, “Khoikoi, Griqua, and the Formation of the Cape Colored People”
Mansa Musa and Sundiata
Nov. 16 - 24
Ch. 19 “The increasing influence of Europe”
Ch. 21 “Reaching Out: Expanding Horizons of Cross-Cultural Inter.”
Schwartz, “The Spread of Religions and Cultures” (Crusades)
Memoirs of Usamah Ibn-Munqidh
Viterbo, “Medieval City” (growth of towns)
Debate: “Were the Crusades Motivated Primarily by Religious Factors?”
Crusader Historiography activity
Ibn Battuta & Marco Polo & Zheng He (Andrea p. 431, 445, 450)
Nov. 25 - Dec. 3
Ch. 20 “Worlds Apart: The Americas and Oceania”
Ch. 6 (pp. 111-116) Mayans and Teotihuacan
Andrea, “The Americas”
Global Interactions 1450-1750CE
Key Concept 4.1. Globalizing Networks of Communication and Exchange
Key Concept 4.2. New Forms of Social Organization and Modes of Production
Key Concept 4.3. State Consolidation and Imperial Expansion
End of Trimester
Ch. 23 “The Transformation of Europe”
Read and Summarize