Introduction to Advanced Placement World History
Ms. Hoeffner

Course Information:
Welcome to AP World History! You are embarking on a new and exciting experience.
This college-level class entails the study of 10,000 years of world history (8,000 BCE – present) in 32 weeks, and it will demand more attention and time than any other class you have previously encountered. You will be given an opportunity to challenge yourself in terms of the level of rigor, and also have the possibility of earning college credit.

The purpose of the course is to study the history of the world through global movements, by looking at the big picture and examining specific case studies that apply. The major units of the course are grouped chronologically. The course begins by examining the major movements of six time periods. The time periods are: Technological & Environmental Transformations, to 600 BCE; Organization & Reorganization of Human Societies, c. 600 BCE to 600 CE; Regional & Transregional Interactions, 600 CE to 1450 CE; Global Interactions, 1450 CE to 1750 CE; Industrialization & Global Integration, 1750 CE to 1900 CE; and Accelerating Global Change and Realignments, 1900 to Present. Rather than dwell on all of the specific details of all this history, we will investigate together the patterns of interaction, integration, and how our global community came to exist in its present form. Developing critical thought and analysis skills are the core objectives of this course. At its successful completion, you will learn new appreciation for your world, a global perspective, and academic tools that will help you succeed at every level of your educational career. To provide a foundation for our learning, you will complete a summer homework assignment detailed later in this handout.

The major themes for the course will be:

We will focus on the following themes in each of the six major units:

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

While examining these themes, the College Board expects you to be able to analyze the processes and causes involved in changes and continuities. You will also need to be able to make comparisons over time of these different themes.

The Historical Thinking Skills that we will focus on are:
  • Crafting Historical Arguments from Historical Evidence
    • Historical Argumentation
    • Appropriate Use of Historical Evidence
  • Chronological Reasoning
    • Historical Causation,
    • Patterns of Continuity and Change over time
    • Periodization
  • Comparison and Contextualization
  • Historical Interpretation & Synthesis

Some things for you to consider:
  • Although the College Board has approved this course and will administer an Advanced Placement Examination at the conclusion of the year, some individual colleges and universities have not yet deemed the test to be equivalent to college credit. Students taking this class as sophomores may be able to receive college credits for passing the test; however, as with all AP courses, each individual college and university makes the determination whether or not to accept the passing test score in lieu of college coursework.
  • Colleges and universities do look carefully at transcripts. AP coursework and attempting to pass the test rank very high in admissions consideration at impacted and competitive institutions and programs.
  • AP course grades are weighted to reflect a greater level of achievement in terms of GPA and rigor in coursework.
  • The AP World History Course attempts to present the world through a balanced approach. Five major geographical areas will be examined in the course: Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe, and Oceania. AP World History course content should not exceed 20% European history, but rather should reflect a global perspective of history.
  • Reading and Writing assignments will be numerous. Critical thinking and the ability to make connections, interpretations and analysis of primary documents will be expected.
  • Religions and religious documents reflect the culture and historical perspective of the people and events that formed history. Many religions, cultures and values will be explored. No particular religious or cultural view will be favored over any other; however, the course will consider how different aspects of culture, including religion, affected and shaped history.

AP World Class Website
Over the summer, you should also enroll in the class website. Please go to the school’s Moodle page from the link on, or you can access the page directly at Once on the Moodle page, click on Hoeffner – AP World History under the Social Studies tab. If you already have a Moodle account, you can sign in with your user name and password and then enroll in the class. If you do not have a Moodle account, you will need to create one before you can enroll. Follow the directions on the page to enroll. Your username should be your first initial and last name. Your surname is your last name. You will need an e-mail address to enroll. Don’t forget to write down your password as you will be the only one to know what it is and you don’t want to forget. The enrollment key for AP World is
AP World History
Ms. Hoeffner


Throughout the year, you will be asked to seek out the broad patterns that make up history and think about history in “big history” ways. To help ease you into this new way of thinking, you will have two summer assignments. The assignments are due on two different due dates. Failure to submit the first assignment will result in your removal from the course. Failure to submit the second assignment, could result in your removal from the course and will result in a zero assignment score for first quarter. AP World History will require you to use your time wisely! Get off on the right track by planning ahead with these assignments. If for any reason, you can not submit either assignment on time, you MUST contact Ms Hoeffner at least one week ahead of time to ask for an extension. Extensions will be considered on a case by case basis.

Part I – Due by August 1st. Please drop off this assignment in the Main Office.

Read ONE of the following books:
A History of the World in 6 Glasses by Tom Standage OR
An Edible History of Humanity by Tom Standage

You will find copies of these books at the public library and should be able to find them at any bookstore or

Both books take an innovative approach to world history. In A History of the World in 6 Glasses, Standage looks at the development of world civilizations by examining the beverages that people drank in various time periods. These are (in chronological order): beer, wine, spirits, coffee, tea, and coco-cola. The use of this book as a summer reading assignment in no way represents any endorsement by Ms Hoeffner of the use or misuse of any of these beverages.

In An Edible History of Humanity, Standage looks at the development of world civilizations by examining the role that food has played across time. His examination of food includes: the edible foundations of civilization; food and social structure; global highways of food; food, energy, and industrialization; food as a weapon; food, population and development.

Both books offer an innovative and (hopefully) interesting perspective to initiate our year-long discussion of world history. Our purpose in reading either book is to get a sense of how civilizations and cultures develop and how numerous forces (political, technological, economic, social, religious, cultural, ecological) all affect even the most mundane-seeming aspects of people's daily lives. For example, when you are drinking a coke on a hot day this summer, it is not an accident. There are historical forces at work that have put that coke in your hand. These books explore those forces as it examines different cultures across time.

You need to plan your time wisely. I would suggest you read one chapter/section at a time rather than trying to read in all at once. Remember that reading and reflecting on one chapter/section at a time will help you “digest” the concepts of this book more easily.

Written Reflections
For this assignment, you will need to read the entire book and complete the following tasks. You may handwrite the assignment neatly, or type the assignment. Typing is preferred. Please use standard 12 pt. Times New Roman font and double space your work.

I. Pre-reading Assignment
Before reading the book, record your answers to the following questions. Use complete sentences.

1. What is your definition of world history?
2. What interests you about studying world history? What does not?

II. Reading Assignment
The concept of AP World History is to focus on the big ideas, concepts, themes, and trends of history. Instead of focusing on every minor event and occurrence, we will focus on the big ideas that have shaped world history and our world today. As you read either book, consider how each of the beverages or foods were linked to the larger historical trends and processes that were occurring.

Remember you only need to choose ONE of the books and do the associated assignment below.

A History of the World in Six Glasses:
For each of the six glasses (beer, wine, spirits, coffee, tea, coca-cola), write a ONE PAGE, well-developed summary of the connection between that beverage and the historical era Standage links it with. Did the drink have a particular impact on the era, or does it somehow represent the zeitgeist (spirit of the time or age) of the era? (Or does it do both?) Explain. Please include TWO quotes (with page numbers) from the book that you think highlight the importance of the drink in that time period.

An Edible History of Humaity:
This book is divided into six parts:
Part I: The Edible Foundations of Civilization
Part II: Food and Social Structure
Part III: Global Highways of Food
Part IV: Food, Energy, and Industrialization
Part V: Food as a Weapon
Part VI: Food, Population and Development

For this book, write a ONE PAGE, well-developed summary for each of the above mentioned parts. In each summary, please explain how the author is connecting the role of food to a particular historical era or concept. Please include TWO quotes (with page numbers) in each of the summaries that you think highlight the importance of food in that time period.

III. Post-reading Assignment
After reading the book, answer the following questions in detail. (One sentence is not enough to answer the questions. With that said, an essay for each question is also not required.)

1. One criticism of the books is that the author focuses too much on Europe and not on other parts of the world. Do you agree or disagree with this criticism? Which parts of the world do not receive much attention in this book?

If you read 6 Glasses, answer 2A. If you read Edible History, answer 2B.
2.A – Standage concludes the book by asking whether water will be the next drink whose story will need to be told. What evidence does he use to support this? Do you agree or disagree with his conclusions? Why/Not?
2.B – Standage concludes the book discussing the Svalbard Global Seed Vault. What do you think about the Norwegian government’s decision to construct and maintain this vault? What are the pros and cons of having such a vault? Do you think the vault is necessary for the continuation of humans?

3. What do you think of Standage's approach to history? Is this a useful way to think about history? What other approaches might one take?
4. Did you like this book? Why or why not? Would you recommend this book? To who? Why or why not?
5. Share any other reactions, thoughts, or questions you have.

For both books – your summaries should take up ONE PAGE for each drink or food part. It is NOT ok for your summaries to extend longer then a page. You need to include the key parts and edit your work so that it meets the length requirement/limit.

Make sure the words you use for your summary are exclusively your own. Any evidence of plagiarism will result in a grade of ZERO for this project and potential removal from the course for academic dishonesty.

Due Date for Part ONE:
Your written reflections and summaries are due by August 1, 2011. This project will count as your first TEST GRADE for the quarter. Failure to turn in this assignment by August 1, 2011 will result in your removal from the course. We will spend some time during the first week of school discussing and reviewing the book. You may also have other assignments related to the texts. Make sure you prepare and ask any questions you have about the text.

When you turn in Part ONE, you will need to sign out a textbook for AP World History in the Main Office in order to complete Part TWO.

AP World History
Ms Hoeffner

Summer Assignment, Part II

Due: The first day of school. Please bring the assignment to class.
The purpose of this assignment is to give you a jump start on the work you will be expected to complete throughout the school year. You will need to begin reading and taking notes in your textbook. You also need to begin learning some key vocabulary. Finally, geography skills are important and you need to refresh your memory of where key geographical locations are. This assignment will also count as a test grade for first quarter. Failure to turn in this assignment will result in a zero grade and could result in removal from the course.

By the first day of school, you need to read and take notes on the first three chapters in your textbook. You may continue taking notes through the first seven chapters, but only notes on the first three chapters will be collected on the first day of school. You need to use the GRAPES format to take notes. AP World History focuses on world themes. The GRAPES format helps you to think about the themes while taking notes. You will prepare a GRAPES outline for each major civilization. By taking notes, you will be better able to make comparisons between cultures and traces changes over time in particular regions. Your notes should include 3-8 bullet points in each of the six categories. For some early civilizations, we know a lot. For others, we know very little. Your notes will not be equal for all societies. Do not panic and do the best you can. For each society, your notes should be about 2 pages long (each side of the page counts as one page). Your notes should be handwritten. You can use the attached chart (also posted on Moodle), or you can make one up yourself. While you will read the entire chapter, you will turn in GRAPES Notes on each of the following civilizations:

Chapter One:
I. Mesopotamia
II. Egypt
III. The Indus Valley Civilization

Chapter Two:
I. Early China
II. Nubia
III. The Americas – Olmec & Chavin

Chapter Three:
I. The Middle East (Sections on the Cosmopolitan Middle East, Assyrian Empire, & Phoenicia)
II. The Aegean World
III. Israel

Remember – these are notes! You are not responsible for recopying the entire chapter/textbook! Focus on the key details rather then every specific detail about a society. Use the following questions as a guide. Remember – you might not be able to find answers to all of the questions for all societies in your textbook. That is ok. You are not expected to look elsewhere. We will go over the key information during the early weeks of school.

Where is the society located (country/continent)? Are their major cities, bodies of water, mountain ranges or other key geographical features that define the society? What is the climate like?
Religion or Belief Systems
What is the meaning of life? Where did the group come from? What happens when they die? How do they spend their lives practicing their faith? Who talks to god(s)? What are the basic beliefs? Are there leaders or documents that define the religion?
Achievements (Intellectual, Technological, Artistic, etc.)
Who are the thinkers? What groups are given the chance to learn? How do people learn? Where does knowledge come from? Also, look at art, philosophy, math, science, technology, and education. What new ideas and innovations do they develop? What resources do they find or adapt?
Political Systems or Structures
Who is in charge? What is power based on? Who gives that person or group power? Is there a contract? What’s the government structure? Are there significant wars, treaties, courts, or laws? Why did the society decline (if politically caused)?
Economic Systems or Structures
How do people earn their food? Is it based on agriculture, commerce, small trades or professions, or industry, like manufacturing or technology? Where’s the money? What are the valued and traded commodities? What technologies or industries define the culture? Why did the society decline (if economically caused)?
Social Systems and Structures
How does the group relate to one another? How do people communicate? What do people do together? How is the group organized? What are the family and gender relations? Are there social classes? How do they live? Are there inequalities based on class, labor, or gender?

Part B: Map / Geography Assignment
Directions: Using the attached maps, label the world map with the land and water features listed below in the color indicated in parenthesis. You do not need to color in the map, but you do need to use the correct colors to label the maps. Two maps have been provided. You may label everything on a single map or use both maps to complete the assignment. If you use both maps, please label all items from the same category on the same map.

Continents (Red)
Oceans and Seas (Blue)
Rivers (Green)
Mountain Ranges, Deserts, & other key features (Brown or Black)
1.North America
1.Atlantic Ocean
1.Alaska Range
2.South America
2.Pacific Ocean
2. Congo River
2.Rocky Mountains
3.Indian Ocean
3. Niger River
4.Arctic Ocean
4.Amazon River
5. North Sea
5.Mississippi River
6.Baltic Sea
6.Rio Grande
5.Alps Mountains
7.English Channel
6.Atlas Mountains

8.Norwegian Sea
7.Ural Mountains

9.Mediterranean Sea
8.Hindu Kush

10.Adriatic Sea
10. Rhine River

11.Aegean Sea
11. Volga River
9.Himalaya Mountains

12.Black Sea
12.Yangtze River

13.Caspian Sea
13.Yellow (Huang
11.Namib Desert

14. Strait of Gibraltar
He) River
12.Kalahari Desert

15. Bosporus Strait
14. Mekong River

16.Great Lakes
15. TigrisRiver
14.Great Rift Valley

17.Red Sea
15. Tibetan Plateau

18.Persian Gulf

16. Sinai Peninsula

19.Arabian Sea

20. Strait of Malacca

21. Strait of Hormuz

22.Bay of Bengal
Please Draw Lightly
& Label the Following

23.South China Sea
(perhaps use pencil)

24.East China Sea
1. Arctic Circle
(@66.5 Degrees N Latitude)

25.Yellow Sea
2. Equator
(0 Degrees Latitude)

26.Sea of Japan
3. Tropic of Cancer
(@23.5 Degrees N Latitude)

27. Lake Victoria
4. Tropic of
(@23.5 Degrees S Latitude)

28. Lake Chad

29. Cape Horn
5. Antarctic Circle
(@66.5 Degrees S Latitude)

30. Cape of Good Hope
6. Prime Meridian
(0 Degrees Longitude)

7. International Date Line
(180 Degrees Longitude)

Part C: Term, People, Events to Know
As you read the textbook, you should also be paying attention to key vocabulary. You will also need to define key words in your textbook. Some of these terms are in bold, but some are not. Please realize that not all important words are in bold and sometimes, all bold words are not as important.

Directions: Write a short (1-2 sentences) definition for each of the following terms. Be sure to THINK about the definition as you write them. Your definition should include what the term means, but also why it is significant. Make sure that your definition is complete. Writing down that an individual was a Babylonian king is useless unless you also know what they did as king that made them a good/bad leader. These terms will show up on early tests and quizzes that you take so do a good job creating them now.

Format: You have some flexibility with the format for you definitions, but regardless of the format style you choose, all definitions should be handwritten. 1. You may make flashcards for the terms. Please put the term on one side and the definition on the other. 2. You may write the terms and definitions down on a sheet of paper. Some students have found it helpful to fold the paper in half lengthwise. Write the term on the left side of the paper and the definition on the right side of the paper. 3. You may include some of the terms in your GRAPES notes. If you have defined them there, please highlight the term in your notes. Please make flashcards for any terms not in your GRAPES notes. Remember though, your GRAPES notes should not only be lists of key terms.

You may wish to include the page number in the book the term is found on in case you need to reference your book again.

One of the biggest challenges you may have is the vocabulary used in this course. Please feel free to include other terms in your textbook that you did not know the meaning of to your vocabulary cards/lists. If you simply skip over unknown words, you will not learn their meaning.

Chapter One: From the Origins of Agriculture to the First River-Valley Civilizations, 8000-1500 B.C.E.

Stone Age
Agricultural Rev.
Çatal Hüyük
Epic of Gilgamesh


Chapter Two: New Civilizations in the Eastern and Western Hemispheres, 2200-250 B.C.E.

Bronze Age
Mandate of Heaven
Dynastic Cycle
Warring States Period
Filial piety
Five Relationships
Yin & Yang
The Analects
Great Wall
Shi Huang di

Chapter Three: The Mediterranean and Middle East, 2000-500 B.C.E.

Iron Age
New Kingdom Egypt
Ramesses II
Odyssey, & Illiad
Linear B
Neo-Assyrian Empire
Mass Deportation
Hebrew Bible
Ten Commandments
First Temple
Neo-Babylonian Kingdom

Final Note: Enjoy your summer vacation! Prioritize and organize your time well. This is an important assignment, but don’t forget to make time for family, friends and yourself. Reflect on how you spend your time – if you find you are pressed for time, look at your daily schedule – how much time do you spend playing video games or on social media sites? The assignments in this packet can reasonably be done at a leisurely pace over the course of the summer IF you pace yourself. DO NOT wait until the last week in July and/or the last two weeks of summer to do this packet or you will inflict undue stress on yourself.

If you have any questions about the assignments, you can e-mail Ms. Hoeffner at Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions over the summer. If I do not get back to you within a couple of days, please send me another e-mail. I may be on vacation or I may not have received the first message. Please include your name and AP World in the subject line. Make sure you sign your e-mail message.

We have an exciting and challenging year ahead of us. I look forward to helping you all meet the challenge and do well on the exam. Have a great summer!