Text: 20th Century Viewpoints (2003) Oxford University Press

Course Structure:

This course introduces students to the study of world history. The course is organized thematically and examines causes, course and consequences of ideas, movements and events affecting people throughout the world since 1900. The general aim is to have students analyze and understand the modern world against the background of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. World History 3201 is a two credit course designed for a minimum of 110 hours of instructional time. A comprehensive public exam (50 % multiple choice and 50% essay/short answer) is held at the end of the school year. All tests and the mid-term exam are modeled on the public exam format: selected response (multiple choice) at 50% and constructed response (essay) at 50%. Students should possess good reading and writing skills.

Course Themes and Approximate Timelines:


  1. Theme I – World War I (1914-1918) 25 classes
    • Sources of Tension
    • Causes and Events
    • Impact of New War Technologies
    • Processes ending World War I
  2. Theme II – Challenges and Changes 25 classes
    • Political Developments in Tsarist Russia
    • Emergence and Consolidation of Communism in Russia
    • Rise of Fascism in Italy and Germany
    • Causes of the Great Depression
  3. Theme III – International Tensions During the 1930’s & World War II (1939-1945) 28 classes
    • Causes of International Tension and World War II Events
    • Nazi Program of Genocide
    • Wartime Conferences
    • Formation of the United Nations
  4. Theme IV – The Cold War (1945-1991) 15 classes
    • Cold War – Origins
    • Cold War Incidents – Korea, Cuba and Vietnam
    • Break-up of the Soviet Union
    • Collapse of Communism in Eastern Europe
  5. Theme V – Regional Developments in Post-World War II Africa, Asia and the Middle East 8 classes
    • Post-World War II Social, Economic and Political Challenges
    • Arab-Israeli Conflict
  6. Theme VI – Challenges of the Modern Era 9 classes
    • Global Challenges (Security, Human Rights, Terrorism, Arms Proliferation, Re-emergent Nationalism, United Nations Peacemaking/Peacekeeping, European Union)



Chapter Quizzes/Unit Tests 15% (5-6 quizzes and 5-6 tests)
Assignments/Homework 20% (timelines, maps, essays, movie reviews/text worksheets & questions)
Midterm Exam (January) 15% (2 hours)
Final Exam (June) 50% (3 hours)