Course Syllabus

AP World History

Instructor: Gary Ellington



Course Description:

The AP World History course is taught with a global perspective of the world and human interactions from the 1200’s to the present day. At the end of this course students will have acquired four historical thinking skills that they will be able to apply to all fields of history. Like many AP courses this class imposes a heavy reading and writing load throughout the year. It is intended to be the equivalent to a college course.


Students in this course will learn to view history thematically. The course is taught around five themes that will help the student understand and analyze the four major periods of world history.


Themes of AP World History:


  1. Interaction between humans and the environment
  • Demography and disease
  • Migration
  • Patterns of settlement
  • Technology
  1. Development and interaction of cultures
  • Religions
  • Belief systems, philosophies, and ideologies
  • Science and technology
  • The arts and architecture
  1. State-building, expansion, and conflict
  • Political structures and forms of governance
  • Empires
  • Nations and nationalism
  • Revolts and revolutions
  • Regional, transregional, and global structures and organizations
  1. Creation, expansion, and interaction of economic systems
  • Agricultural and pastoral production
  • Trade and commerce
  • Labor systems
  • Industrialization
  • Capitalism and socialism
  1. Development and transformation of social structures
  • Gender roles and relations
  • Family and kinship
  • Racial and ethnic constructions
  • Social and economic classes

Historical Thinking Skills

These are the skills that it will take to be successful in AP World History.


  1. Crafting Historical Arguments from Historical Evidence
  • Historical argumentation
  • Appropriate use of relevant historical evidence
  1. Chronological Reasoning
  • Historical causation
  • Patterns of continuity and change over time
  • Periodization
  1. Comparison and Contextualization
  • Comparison
  • Contextualization
  1. Historical Interpretation and Synthesis
  • Interpretation
  • Synthesis


Grading Policy:

This is a college level course and you will need to spend the appropriate amount of time reading and studying to be successful. No extra credit is given.


Unit Exams: (50%) Exams are given on the test dates that are on the board. If you miss the day before the exam, you are still expected to take the exam on the test day. If you miss the day of the exam you will take the exam the next day you are present. There are no study guides given for test. No bathroom breaks during test.


Reading Progress Checks: (15%) There will be weekly assigned readings and reading checks along with class discussions. AP Classroom will be used for progress checks.


Writing Assignments/Projects: (20%) Each six weeks there will be several writing assignments. Also at least once per six weeks there will be a project.


Quizzes: (15%) There will be a quizzes on vocabulary, readings, geography and movies.





  • World History: Modern (1200-Present) Perfection Learning. Amsco 2019







Classroom Expectations and Materials:


  • Needed on a daily basis:
    • Textbook
    • Charged Laptop
    • Writing utensils
    • Notebook or 3 ring binder


  • Classroom Expectations are posted on the wall in two different places.
    • Most importantly be respectful of everyone around you.



AP World History “Periods”:


  • Period 1: 1200-1450
    • Unit 1: The Global Tapestry 1200-1450
    • Unit 2: Networks of Exchange 1200-1450


  • Period 2: 1450-1750
    • Unit 3: Land Based Empires 1450-1750
    • Unit 4: Transoceanic Interconnections 1450-1750


  • Period 3: 1750-1900
    • Unit 5: Revolutions 1750-1900
    • Unit 6: Consequences of Industrialization 1750-1900


  • Period 4: 1900-Present
    • Unit 7: Global Conflicts after 1900
    • Unit 8: Cold War and Decolonization
    • Unit 9: Globalization after 1900




AP Classroom:







AP Exam Format


Section 1A: Multiple Choice

55 Questions | 55 Minutes | 40% of Exam Score

  • Questions usually appear in sets of 3–4 questions.
  • Students analyze historical texts, interpretations, and evidence.
  • Primary and secondary sources, images, graphs, and maps are included.

 Section 1B: Short Answer

3 Questions | 40 Minutes | 20% of Exam Score

  • Students analyze historians’ interpretations, historical sources, and propositions about history.
  • Questions provide opportunities for students to demonstrate what they know best.
  • Some questions include texts, images, graphs, or maps.
  • Students choose between 2 options for the final required short-answer question, each one focusing on a different time period

 Section 2A: Document-Based Question

1 Question | 1 Hour (includes 15-minute reading period) | 25% of Exam Score

  • Students are presented with 7 documents offering various perspectives on a historical development or process.
  • Students assess these written, quantitative, or visual materials as historical evidence.
  • Students develop an argument supported by an analysis of historical evidence.
  • The document-based question focuses on topics from 1450–2001.

 Section 2B: Long Essay

1 Question | 40 Minutes | 15% of Exam Score

  • Students explain and analyze significant issues in world history.
  • Students develop an argument supported by an analysis of historical evidence.

Course Summary:

Date Details Due