Optional Note: The most updated version of this syllabus is available in Moodle, accessible through Granite State College’s MyGranite site

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HIS 502 Great Civilizations - 4 Credits Credits

GSC ________ CAMPUS

TERM / YEAR: ________________________

MEETING DATES: ________________________

MEETING TIMES: ________________________


Contact Info: Email address Phone number(s)

Optional Note: The most updated version of this syllabus is available in Moodle, accessible through Granite State College’s MyGranite site.

Course Description

This course examines the rise of civilizations throughout the world, tracing the history of human societies from their beginnings until the European discovery of America. After surveying the prehistoric period and early civilization, the course focuses on the religious, political and cultural characteristics of Asian and Arabic civilizations in the East and Middle East, and on Greco-Roman antiquity and the Middle Ages in the West.


Learning Outcomes

1. Consider the relevance of historical knowledge for the elucidation of contemporary human experiences, and learn to identify persistent human concerns beneath the historical contingencies of time and place.

2. Consider and evaluate the aims and theoretical problems of historical scholarship and of those social sciences, (e.g. archeology, anthropology) most useful in reconstructing and understanding past civilizations.

3. Examine, judge, and synthesize historical information about the following:

• Evidence of and theories about the life of homo sapiens in the prehistoric period;

• Early civilizations in Mesopotamia, Egypt, India, and China;

• The various societies that thrived on the invasion of early civilizations;

• The religious innovations of the ancient Hebrews;

• The political, cultural, and scientific developments of early and classical Greek civilization and of the Hellenistic age;

• The political and cultural achievements of ancient Roman civilization, and the development of Christianity in the Roman Empire;

• The cultural, political, and religious traditions of ancient China and Japan;

• The teachings of Mohammed, the rise of Islam, and the development of Arabic culture;

• The religious, political, and artistic developments in the Christian culture of western Europe during the Middle Ages, and the challenges to that culture presented by the social, political, and institutional changes experienced in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries CE.

Course Resources

Textbook(s): Please list full citation information specifying ISBN and edition



Textbooks are available via GSC’s online bookstore, MBS Direct at: Gttp://bookstore.mbsdirect.net/gsc.htm.

Your textbooks may be available in the GSC Library. Search the GSC Discovery Service (library.granite.edu) or contact the College Librarian at: gsc.library@granite.edu.

Other Class Materials

Use this section to list optional reading, computer hardware/software, calculators, art supplies, portfolio, camera etc. Please describe how & where to obtain and approximate cost, if applicable. Note that any required course supplies must be discussed with your hiring administrator well in advance so that accurate costs can be provided to students in our published registration materials.

Course Policies

Use this section to describe your “rules” for the course. Do not duplicate the information in the section “helpful information and Granite State College policies.” Include academic expectations and classroom preferences. Topics might include attendance, lateness of arrival or late assignments, civility/confidentiality, participation, use of cell phones, etc.

Optional sections
Teaching Philosophy
Course Methods

Description of Course Activities and Requirements
Describe major assignments, articulate participation requirements, insert your grading rubrics.

Grading Percentages











NOTE: “ATTENDANCE” SHOULD NOT be listed as A CATEGORY FOR GRADING PERCENTAGES. PLEASE USE a term such as “in-CLASS PARTICIPATION” or “in-class activities/engagement” to emphasize that your evaluation will be based on quality of presence (rather than just being present).

Granite State College Standard Grading Scale



Grade Points

Level of Achievement









































Failure, no credit

*A grade of C or better is required to fulfill requirements in the major, minor, or general education courses at GSC. Please consult the GSC catalog for details.

† A grade of C- or below generally does not transfer to other academic institutions.

Other Grades

  1. AF (Administrative Failure): An AF grade will be assigned to the student who stops participating early in the course and has not completed coursework sufficient for the assessment of course outcomes, or has stopped attending without formally withdrawing. An AF counts as an F grade in the calculation of grade point averages, and may have implications under policies on degree progress and financial aid/student accounts.

  1. IC (Incomplete Coursework): A grade of IC can be assigned by a faculty member only when a student specifically requests the IC and agrees to the student's proposed plan to complete remaining assignment(s). Students must have completed the majority of course assignments and be passing the course to be considered for a grade of IC. An incomplete grade contract between the faculty member and the student will be required when an IC grade is filed; IC grades become grades of F after the published deadlines.

Course Schedule & Topics
Note: The following may change at the instructor’s discretion.
For week-by-week topics, assignments and due dates - use any form of your choosing (blocks, bulleted list, outline, etc. ).
Library Services  

The College Librarian is available to help you with plotting your research strategy; identifying, accessing, and evaluating information. Contact the College Librarian via e-mail (gsc.library@granite.edu) or by phone (603-728-8140). Additionally, we have electronic resources available through the GSC Discovery Service.

You can access the GSC Library in several ways:

  • Go to: GSC Library (http://library.granite.edu) - the most direct route.

  • Click on one of the library links under Research Help embedded in all e-Learning Moodle classes.

  • Under the Academics tab in MyGranite, the Library is a link on the left navigation.

Academic Coaching Services

Academic assistance to students is available at no additional charge. Basic skills preparation in reading, writing and math; study and research skills, time management tips and help in identifying online resources, are just a few of the specific resources available to all students at the institution. Campus team members work closely with faculty and the academic administration to foster academic success. A whole range of support services are available at the campus locations throughout the state, via faculty-led workshops on math and writing, and via Smart Thinking, an online tutoring resource available at the College. For details, please visit http://my.granite.edu/support-services.

Technical Assistance

For assistance with issues related to accessing eLearning+, Moodle,  Go.Granite email, WebRock, online courses or other technical issues related to any of the Moodle tools, please visit the GSC IT Service Desk (http://it.granite.edu) for answers to the most frequently asked questions.  Or submit an online help request form or call 1-888-372-4270. Regular business hours are M-F, 8:30 am -5:00 pm.  Technical assistance after hours, on weekends and holidays is provided by an extended hour support service.

Documented Disabilities / Americans with Disabilities Act

Granite State College Student Disability Services is committed to helping students become engaged, self-advocating, independent learners. We seek to promote accessible learning environments where students with disabilities experience equal access and full participation.

Granite State College, in accordance with the American Disabilities Act of 1990, and the Americans with Disabilities Amendments Act of 2008, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, will provide eligible students with a documented disability reasonable accommodation in order to ensure equal access to college programs and activities.

To apply for accommodations, please contact GSC Student Disabilities Services (SDS) at (603) 513-1368 or by email GSC.SDS@granite.edu or download the application directly.

Academic Honesty

An academic community is based on honesty and integrity. Plagiarism, cheating, or other forms of academic dishonesty are not acceptable at Granite State College. Faculty and students have a joint responsibility to ensure the integrity of learning.

All work that you submit must be your own except in those instances when your instructor gives specific permission to collaborate. When quoting, summarizing or explaining ideas that are based on another's work, whether in print or online, make sure to cite references appropriately. Plagiarism is using another’s words or even paraphrasing another’s work without giving proper credit through the use of citations.
For Granite State College’s complete academic honesty policy, see the current college catalog http://www.granite.edu/academics/schedule.php).

Turnitin Use Policy

Granite State College makes use of Turnitin.com, an online service that checks students' work for improper citation or potential plagiarism by comparing it against the works of others in the Turnitin database as well as online sources. Students taking this course agree that all required work may be submitted to Turnitin and also agree to their terms of use. (http://turnitin.com/en_us/about-us/privacy-center/usage-policy) Works submitted to Turnitin will become source documents in their reference database solely for the purpose of detecting plagiarism of other students’ work. Students retain copyright of their own work. Turnitin takes extreme measures to protect users’ privacy which can be reviewed in their Privacy Center. (http://turnitin.com/en_us/privacy-center/overview)

Conduct in the Classroom

Membership in society implies minimal norms for civil behavior towards one another. It is Granite State College’s expectation that all members of our college community treat faculty, staff, and fellow students with respect. Students need to be knowledgeable of and comply with college policies. Each individual is accountable for his/her actions and for the consequences of any behavior that is inconsistent with these values and expectations.

Title IX (20 U.S.C. § 1681) Statement

Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972, 20 U.S.C. section 1681 is a federal civil rights law prohibiting the discrimination on the basis of sex in education programs and activities. This includes all forms of gender and sex based discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking. Granite State College maintains a zero tolerance policy for sexual misconduct. For more information on Title IX, GSC’s Sexual Misconduct Policy or to report an incident please contact the GSC Title IX Coordinator, Kate O’Neill at 603-513-1140 or email kate.oneill@granite.edu.

Weather Cancellation Policy

Decisions to close or delay opening of an Academic Center will be made NO LATER THAN 6:30 AM.   Decisions to cancel evening classes will be made NO LATER THAN 3:00 PM. Closings will be announced on WMUR TV as well as its website www. wmur.com/closings (a link is also provided on the homepage of the GSC Websitewww.granite.edu and New Hampshire Public Radio’s website: http://www.nhpr.org). If a class is cancelled, you should contact your instructor for any make-up instructions.

Institutional Assessment

Assessment is an ongoing process that enables the College to improve its programs, courses, and teaching methods. Institutional evaluation may be embedded in tests, exams and other measurements of student learning. As members of a learning community, students, faculty and staff will be expected to participate in the important process of assessment on occasion. Confidentiality of any data that identify participants is maintained.

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