History of World Societies, 3000 BCE to 1500 CE

Humanities & Social Sciences
Course Code
HIST 1101
Semester Length
Max Class Size
Method(s) Of Instruction
Course Designation
Certificate in Global Competency
Industry Designation
Typically Offered
To be determined


Course Description
HIST 1101, History of World Societies, 3000 BCE to 1500 CE introduces students to a globally integrated survey of world history, focusing on interconnection and diversity, transformation, conflict, and connection, trade and commerce among different societies in Asia, Africa, Europe, the Americas and Oceania. Themes include: first migrations and early human societies; transition to agriculture and the development of sedentary civilizations; river civilizations in Western Asia, North Africa, India, and China; classical civilizations in Han China, Mauryan India, Persia, Greece and Rome; the rise of philosophy and world religions (Buddhism, Christianity and Islam); the post-Imperial era in Europe, Byzantium and China, frontier civilizations in South East and North East Asia, Africa, Mesoamerica, and Oceania; the era of crises in Asia and Europe, from the rise of Mongol Empire, climate change and the Black Death, to popular revolts and urban unrest; European exploration and the beginning of the first era of globalization.
Course Content

A sample course outline may include the following topics.

Note: Content may vary according to the instructor’s selection of topics.

  1. Introduction: First Migrations, Development of Agriculture; Sedendary Civilizations
  2. River Civilizations: Mesopotamia and Egypt
  3. River Civilizations: India and China
  4. The Axial Revolution
  5. City States and Empires: Assyria, Persia, Greece and the Hellenic World
  6. Conquest and Exchange: The Roman Empire
  7. Empires in Asia: China and India
  8. The Islamic World
  9. Continuity and Change: Europe, East and West
  10. Worlds Coming Together: China, Korea, Japan, India and SE Asia
  11. Worlds Together and Apart: Africa
  12. Worlds Apart: Meso-America and Oceania
  13. Collapse, Conflict, Recovery and Consolidation: The Mongol Empire, the Black Death, Popular Revolts, National Monarchies
  14. A European Global Era, East and West
Learning Activities

Classroom instruction will include both lectures and seminar discussions. Lectures will provide instruction on weekly topics with opportunities for student inquiry and discussion. Seminars will encourage active class participation in the analysis of assigned primary and secondary readings. Classroom instruction may also include facilitation of student-led projects, student presentations on specific readings and/or topics, and other types of student-led activities. Classroom instruction may also include tutorials and workshops on transferrable skills, including research methods, academic citation practice, and presentation skills.

Means of Assessment

Assessment will be in accordance with the Douglas College student evaluation policy. Students may conduct research with human participants as part of their coursework in this class. Instructors for the course are responsible for ensuring that student research projects comply with College policies on ethical conduct for research involving humans.

Students will have opportunities to build and refine their research capacity and historical thinking skills through assessments appropriate to the level of the course. There will be at least three separate assessments, which may include a combination of midterm and final exams; research essays; primary document analysis assignments and essays; quizzes; map tests; in-class and online written assignments; seminar presentations; student assignment portfolios; group projects; creative projects; class participation.

 The value of each assessment and evaluation, expressed as a percentage of the final grade, will be listed in the course outline distributed to students at the beginning of the term. Specific evaluation criteria will vary according to the instructor’s assessment of appropriate evaluation methods.

An example of one evaluation scheme:

  • Participation, In-Class Work: 15%
  • Seminar Presentation: 10%
  • Primary Document Analyses: 15%
  • Midterm Exam: 15%
  • Short Analytic Essay(s): 10%
  • Research Project: 20%
  • Final Exam: 15%
Learning Outcomes

At the conclusion of the course, successful students will be able to demonstrate historical thinking skills, research skills, critical thinking skills and communication skills appropriate to the level of the course by:

1. Locating, examining, assessing, and evaluating a range of primary sources and secondary scholarly literature critically and analytically (reading history).

2. Constructing historical arguments, taking historical perspectives, and interpreting historical problems through different types of writing assignments of varying lengths (writing history).

3. Participating in active and informed historical debate independently and cooperatively through classroom discussion and presentation (discussing history).

4. Independently and cooperatively investigating the ways that history is created, preserved and disseminated through public memory and commemoration, oral history, community engagement, and other forms of popular visual and written expressions about the past (applying history).

Textbook Materials

Textbooks and Course Readers will be chosen from the following list, to be updated periodically.

An instructor’s custom Course Reader may be required. Additional online resources may also be assigned, and links to specific resources may be provided in the course outline.

Coastsworth, John. Global Connections: Politics, Exchange, and Social Life in World History. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015.

Craig, Albert M., et al. The Heritage of World Civilizations. 10th ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson, 2016.

Crosby, Alfred W. Ecological Imperialism: The Biological Expansion of Europe, 900-1900. New ed. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004.

Fernandez-Armesto, Felipe. The World: A History. 3rd ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson, 2016.

Judge, Edward H., and John W. Langdon. Connections: A World History. 3rd ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson, 2016.

McKay, John P., et al. A History of World Societies. 10th ed. Boston: Bedford St. Martin’s, 2015.

Stearns, Peter, et al. World Civilizations: The Global Experience. 7th ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson, 2015.

Strayer, Robert W., and Eric W. Nelson. Ways of the World: A Brief Global History. 3rd ed. Boston: Bedford St. Martin’s, 2016.

Tignor, Robert, et al. Worlds Together, Worlds Apart: A History of the World. 4th ed. New York: Norton, 2013.

Von Sivers, Peter, Charles A. Desnoyers, and George B. Stow. Patterns of World History. 2nd ed. New York: Oxford University Press, 2015.








Course Guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester / year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

Course Transfers

These are for current course guidelines only. For a full list of archived courses please see

Institution Transfer Details for HIST 1101
Capilano University (CAPU) CAPU HIST 2XX (3)
Coquitlam College (COQU) COQU HIST 110 (3)
Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) KPU HIST 1XXX (3)
Langara College (LANG) LANG HIST 1XXX (3)
North Island College (NIC) NIC HIS 1XX (3)
Simon Fraser University (SFU) SFU HIST 1XX (3)
Thompson Rivers University (TRU) TRU HIST 1XXX (3)
Trinity Western University (TWU) TWU HIST 107 (3)
University of British Columbia - Okanagan (UBCO) UBCO HIST 1st (3)
University of British Columbia - Vancouver (UBCV) UBCV HIST 1st (3)
University of Northern BC (UNBC) UNBC HIST 190 (3)
University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) UFV HIST 1XX (3)
University of Victoria (UVIC) UVIC HSTR 1XX (1.5)
Vancouver Island University (VIU) VIU HIST 1st (3)

Course Offerings

Summer 2023