Browse Teaching

Explore commonly taught topics along with related primary sources, discussion questions, teaching strategies, and annotated bibliographies.

Photograph of a factory or plant with a "Coca Cola" sign

Short Teaching Module: Business History and Multilocal Approaches to World History

Globalization has meant not only greater cultural homogenization than ever before, but also growing multiculturalism, fostering many opportunities for cultural

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Source Collection: Analyzing Treaties between the Iroquois Confederacy and the English Colonies in the 18th Century

During the 18th century, interactions between native peoples and Europeans were a regular occurrence not just along the colonial frontiers, but in French, English, and Spanish cities across the continent. One of the most powerful Native American nations in the north was the Iroquois Confederacy, or Six Nations.

Short Teaching Module: Connecting Local and Global History via Mercantile Networks

European merchants spread throughout the world seeking new markets. In doing so, they actively connected remote localities to global networks across multiple continents. Local people around the world often challenged European economic dominance, forcing European merchants to pursue accommodating relationships with local people.

Photograph of a large ship loaded with shipping containers

Short Teaching Module: Using Ships as Guides for Transnational Adventures through World History

Ships travel across oceans and in doing so connect people in disparate places across the globe. In this essay, Brandon Tachco explains how a focus on ships as a theme can add much to the study of world history. As "in between" places like ships are transnational by definition and they provide engaging sources for students to study.

Stellar diagram features a drawing of a ship surrounded by Chinese characters

Short Teaching Module: Premodern Chinese Maps and the Global Maritime World

Premodern Chinese maps offer fascinating sources for teachers and students of world history. As historian Elke Papelitzky explains, these maps can reveal much about the world view of the mapmakers and their audience in China and they also serve as example of how knowledge and skills spread from region to region in the period.

Image of typed emmerton letter

Short Teaching Module: Shared Space, Shared Experiences: Transnational Water Management around the Great Lakes

World historians sometimes work within a single sub-field, such as migration history or gender history, but they can also bring sub-fields together, as their perspectives, methods, and subject matter cross boundaries.

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Long Teaching Module: Masculinity and Femininity in the Mongol Empire

This module examines ideals of masculinity and femininity among the Mongols, the Central Asian nomadic pastoralists who in the thirteenth century under their leader Chinggis Khan created the largest land-based empire the world has ever seen.

Front page of a newspaper in Chinese

Short Teaching Module: Colonialism and Local Power

Colonialism and imperialism can take many forms, but more often than not these do not entail direct and strict control from a distant imperial metropole.

Image of the newspaper article. Description in annotation.

Short Teaching Module: Race, Gender, and Transnational Histories of Solidarity

Studying transnational histories of solidarity among women of African descent reveals new dimensions of global political and social movements through the intersection of race and gender.

Source Collection: Analyzing Historic Churches in the Southwestern US

Today, the US-Mexico border stretches along the path of the Rio Grande River. However, much of the territory that now makes up the Southwestern states of the US once belonged to the Spanish Crown. Studying the historic churches of Texas helps reveal this history.

Short Teaching Module: Cultural Exchange Before Modern Times

Cultural exchange is an integral part of human history and change over time. As cultures have interacted and traded with one another, ideas and goods have spread, wars broken out, and information shared. One way this patterning can be studied historically is by tracing the spread of objects over time.

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Short Teaching Module: The Forgotten Beirut-based Companies in the Global History of Capitalism

The history of capitalism has traditionally centered Europe, but the reality is that globalization and exchange has been shaped by actors from around the world.

Handwritten black ink recipe written in a paragraph format.

Short Teaching Module: A Human History of Commodities

A commodity is a material that can be bought and sold- and it doesn't automatically have to be a raw agricultural good. Historians have focused on commodities as an insight into past economies, as well as the connections between places and goods via trade in order to better understand capitalism as well as the Columbian exchange.

Short Teaching Module: Constantine and Christianity

Christianity is based on the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth (ca. 3 B.C.E.–29 C.E.), a Jewish religious thinker who according to Christian Scripture lived in Judaea, a province of the Roman Empire. Accounts of his life and teachings spread orally and then in writing, among men and women from all social classes.

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Short Teaching Module: The Legacy of Charlemagne through the Ages

Teaching about the interplay of history and memory is fascinating. This is particularly true in an age when students are so highly attuned to source bias through news, life experience, online and social media interactions, and of course, learning about such issues in school.

Long Teaching Module: Inca Society

In South America in the centuries before 1500, the Peruvian coast and Andean highlands were home to a series of cultures that cultivated cotton as well as food crops. Of these, the largest empire was created by the Incas, who began as a small militaristic group and conquered surrounding groups.

Short Teaching Module: Sick Men in Mid-Nineteenth-Century International Relations

I use political cartoons, newspaper stories, and excerpts from government documents to show different perspectives of a country’s power and foreign relations. I have several aims in using the texts.

Bronze monument of Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson, Monument Avenue, Richmond, Virginia

Short Teaching Module: Controversial Historical Monuments

I use images of three historical statues that triggered controversy beginning in the 2010s to teach about the concept of contested historical memory and to have students consider parallels and differences among public history controversies in different parts of the world. I have several aims in using the images.

Short Teaching Module: Emperor Ashoka and Buddhism

Buddhism is based on the ideas of a north Indian prince, Siddhartha Gautama (fl. ca. 500 B.C.E.), called the Buddha (“enlightened one”), who through meditation gained insight into what he understood were cosmic truths.

Short Teaching Module: European Maps of the Early Modern World

I use images of three historical maps for topics on colonial exploration and for interpreting historical evidence in undergraduate courses on history and historical methodology. I have several aims in using the maps. One is to study moments as well as change over time in Europeans’ conceptions of the world.