*Modern World History - HP 1533

Course Overview:
This course offers an overview of the development of human civilization from the Enlightenment to the present. It will analyze political, social, economic, moral, and ideological foundations important in the development of today's global society. This course serves as a student's Foundation General Education course for the Global Perspectives learning outcome.

Overview of Course Objectives:

By the end of this course, successful students will be able to

1.    Articulate the meaning of peoples as expressed in their writings (primary documents) and to explain effectively the impact their ideas had on their cultures

2.    Discuss a historical question using reasoned explanations and examples and to effectively communicate your thoughts in an online discussion forum.

3.    Examine where history took place by locating regions, countries, cities, and other geographic features on world maps and explaining why these maps change over time.

4.    Reflect on what they have learned about places, events and their participants and to explain why actions that took place in the past had and still have global ramifications.

5.    Interpret the arguments developed by historians over time who sought to explain why historical events occurred and the impact of those events on future generations.

6.    Analyze how a culture’s current issues are directly related to the direct and indirect actions of peoples in the past.


Required Text:

Judge and Langdon, Connections: A World History Vol. II second edition ISBN 978 0205 8354 54

Overview of Course Assignments:

The following are the learning objectives that will aid the student in meeting the above course objectives.  Each week, the student will complete 2 chapters in the Judge & Langdon book.  ALL materials for ALL chapters assigned that week are due by Sunday at 11:55 p.m. CST (with the exception of the initial discussion forum posts and the visual presentation for the current events project - see red sections below)

1.  Primary Reading – After reading each chapter and watching the short lecture (if provided) for the chapter, students should complete the primary readings for that chapter. These readings give you the opportunity to look at what historical figures had to say about the times in which they lived and how they – and their writings – influenced future events and decisions.  In each case you should be able to find information about the documents, their authors, and the time period in your textbook and online (try to use something more academic than Wikipedia please!) To receive credit for the writing assignment (worth 10 points each, 100 points total.  There are 12 primary readings to choose from, just pick 10), students must successfully communicate:

1.    a summary of the content of the documents (without simply rewriting the documents or pulling large direct quotes out of the text).

2.    a description of the historical context of the authors and the documents (what about the time period impacted what the authors wrote?).

3.    an analysis of the documents that includes ways these two documents are connected and the significance of the documents to their time period. 

2.  Discussion Forum – Once you have read the chapter and primary source (see Schedule), please go to that chapter’s discussion forum to find the question related to that reading.  You will craft your own response to the essay, worth 6 points.  In order to achieve all points, the essay response must have a strong interpretive statement (your thesis) and examples that support the thesis.  Next, you will need to respond to two other postings, worth 2 points each (10 points each forum, 100 points total).  These responses may challenge the author’s thesis, but should in no way attack the author personally.  These should be academic discussions based on the sound historical evidence at your disposal.  In order to make sure everyone has time to respond to others by Sunday at 11:55 p.m., your initial essay is due the previous FRIDAY AT NOON I will sometimes weigh in during the week but mostly I'll just be "lurking" as nothing shuts a conversation down quicker than the prof posting.

3.  Map Analysis – In order to understand how cultures have changed over time, it is necessary to see how their geographic landscape has changed over time.  With most chapters, there are two maps that you need to “read” for information and then answer the question associated with the maps.  Some of these maps will come from your book and others will be online.  Make sure you explore the map thoroughly before answering the question, including reading the map titles and any explanatory notations, the position of borders, and the legend (or key).  There will be 10 sets of maps, worth 10 points each.                                                        

4.  Reflection Essay – Once you have finished the week’s assignments, it is time to reflect on what you have learned and each is worth 15 points.  While you can include additional information in your essay (250-500 words), at least answer the following questions:

1.    The main purpose of these two chapters was to provide an overview of what world issues?

2.    What are four things you learned from these chapters and why did you think those particular events or people stuck with you?

3.    After all that you have read and looked at this week, what conclusions can you draw about this time period in world history?

4.    How did the topics covered this week help you better understand and explain what is happening today in the regions of the world covered?

5.  Article Reviews – Students will read Samuel Huntington’s “The Clash of Civilizations” and write a review of the article (500-750 words) due September 16. Students will also be assigned two of the professional critiques of Huntington’s article and students will write a response essay (approximately 250-300 words) that explains how this author’s interpretation differs from Huntington due September 23.  Keep in mind as you are completing both assignments how these historians’ arguments can help us better understand current global conflicts (which will be helpful for your Current Events Project).  Both assignments are worth a total of 60 points (30 points each).

6.  Current Events Project – After week one, students will be divided into groups of three for work on a group project.  The group will select one topic from a list of current event issues (only one group per topic).  Then students will develop a written document and visual presentation using Google Docs and Screencast O'Matic in which they answer the general question “How did the world get to this point.”  This means the group will need to trace the historical origins (or at least back to 1850) of the current issue.  The group will also need to answer more specific questions that arise about the current region or peoples and how they are handling the problems they face today. The visual presentation will need to be complete and available by NOON MONDAY of the last week of class so that the other groups may view the presentation and ask questions on a discussion forum.   Each student should make one comment or ask a question of one of the other groups – that way each group gets some feedback they can use in the written essay.  Each student will also critique the presentations of the other groups (responses sent directly to the professor)  as well as the work of their own group members.  Failure to provide feedback to another group or to submit the Peer Evaluation form will result in a deduction in a student’s individual grade on the project.  The collaborative written document is due at the end of the sixth week so the group may add additional information not provided in the visual presentation.  The visual presentation is worth 50 points; the written product is also worth 50 points.

Course Ground Rules:

·         Participation is required.

·         Learner is expected to communicate with other students in discussion threads.

·         Learn to navigate in My Courses.

·         Keep abreast of course announcements.

·         Use the assigned university email address as opposed to a personal email address. You may choose to forward your university address to your personal address.

·         Address technical problems immediately.

·         Observe online etiquette at all times.

·         Work is expected to be submitted by due date. Any exceptions are at the discretion of the instructor.



If you need assistance with a learning, physical or psychological disability that may affect your academic progress, you are encouraged to contact the Disability Services Director at (405)491-6694 (M-F 8:00-5:00). All students are encouraged to seek assistance.