Western Civilization I

Hist 2311

Updated September 02, 2011

  • State Approval Code: 5401015425
  • Semester Credit Hours: 3
  • Lecture Hours per Week: 3
  • Contact Hours per Semester: 48

Catalog Description

A survey of the history of early civilization to the beginning of the Renaissance with special emphasis  on social, political, and economic influences that shaped each period. Lecture hours = 3, Lab hours = 0


TSIP reading completed

Course Curriculum

Basic Intellectual Compentencies in the Core Curriculum

  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Speaking
  • Listening
  • Critical thinking
  • Computer literacy

Perspectives in the Core Curriculum

  • Establish broad and multiple perspectives on the individual in relationship to the larger society and world in which he/she lives, and to understand the responsibilities of living in a culturally and ethnically diversified world.
  • Stimulate a capacity to discuss and reflect upon individual, political, economic, and social aspects of life in order to understand ways in which to be a responsible member of society.
  • Develop a capacity to use knowledge of how technology and science affect their lives.
  • Develop personal values for ethical behavior.
  • Use logical reasoning in problem solving.
  • Integrate knowledge and understand the interrelationships of the scholarly disciplines.

Core Components and Related Exemplary Educational Objectives

Social and Behavioral Sciences

  • To employ the appropriate methods, technologies, and data that social and behavioral scientists use to investigate the human condition.
  • To examine social institutions and processes across a range of historical periods, social structures, and cultures.
  • To develop and communicate alternative explanations or solutions for contemporary social issues.
  • To analyze the effects of historical, social, political, economic, cultural, and global forces on the area under study.
  • To comprehend the origins and evolution of U.S. and Texas political systems, with a focus on the growth of political institutions, the constitutions of the U.S. and Texas, federalism, civil liberties, and civil and human rights.
  • To understand the evolution and current role of the U.S. in the world.
  • To differentiate and analyze historical evidence (documentary and statistical) and differing points of view.
  • To recognize and apply reasonable criteria for the acceptability of historical evidence and social research.
  • To analyze, critically assess, and develop creative solutions to public policy problems.
  • To identify and understand differences and commonalities within diverse cultures.

Instructional Goals and Purposes

Panola College's instructional goals include 1) creating an academic atmosphere in which students may develop their intellects and skills and 2) providing courses so students may receive a certificate/an associate degree or transfer to a senior institution that offers baccalaureate degrees.

General Course Objectives

Being part of Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board core curriculum, students of this course, upon completion, are expected to demonstrate certain competencies in a number of general subject areas including the following.

 1. Students will examine the key events and developments of the Ancient civilizations on but not limited to the Greeks and the Romans.

2. Students will examine the rise and fall of the Romans along with Roman contributions to Medieval society and ensuing generations.

3. Students will examine the key developments and contributions of Europe’s Medieval Period.

Specific Course Objectives

As an extension to the more general subject areas above, students are also expected to develop and demonstrate certain competencies in a number of more specific areas related to each of the following.

1.  Students will know the factors that led to the beginning of “civilization” in the Near East and Egypt, with special emphasis on writing and its power.

2. Students will recognize the accomplishments and influences of several ancient civilizations such as the Babylonians, Hebrews, Phoenicians, Persians, and early Greek states on subsequent cultures.

3. Students will understand the numerous contributions and influences of the Greek civilization on both the Romans and modern society.

4. Students will identify the techniques and patterns used by Rome to emerge from relative obscurity to empire, and the lessons that become applicable to later powers seeking similar achievements.

5. Students will recognize the social, cultural, and religious achievements of the Roman Empire, including the role of the Romans in the rise and spread of Christianity.

6. Students will understand the numerous factors that contributed to the “fall” of the Roman Empire in the West, as well as the ongoing debate over which factors are most critical or solely responsible.

7. Students will recognize the civilizations that survived or emerged following the collapse of the Roman Empire in the West, with emphasis on the Byzantines and early Islam in the East, and the Catholic Church and early Medieval barbarian kingdoms in the West.

8. Students will identify the key Medieval institutions to emerge by the time of the High Middle Ages, with special emphasis on Feudalism, the Crusades, and rise of towns & cities.

9. Students will recognize the crisis of the Later Middle Ages and the role it played in ushering in the Renaissance.

General Description of Each Lecture or Discussion

Students in all sections of US History II will be required adhere to Panola's attendance policy as outlined below:

Regular and punctual attendance at classes and laboratories is required of all students. When a student has been ill or absent from class for approved extracurricular activities, he or she should be allowed, as far as possible, to make up the work missed.

In accordance with Section 51.911, Texas Education Code, Panola College shall allow a student, who is absent from class in observance of a religious holy day, to take an examination or complete an assignment schedule for that day within a reasonable time after the absence. By the end of the second week of class, the student must notify his or her instructors of the student’s intent to be absent for religious holy days, which occur in the semester. When an instructor feels that a student has been absent to such a degree as to invalidate the learning experience, the instructor may recommend to the VP of Instruction that the student be dropped from the course. Instructors may drop students for nonattendance after they have accumulated the following number of absences. (See Form, Appendix E) Regular sessions 5 absences – MWF classes 3 absences – TTH classes 2 absences – One-day-per-week classes Summer sessions 3 absences – Five-day-per-week classes 2 absences – Two-evenings-per-week classes Students are responsible for seeing that they are officially withdrawn from class.

2. Stay current on all classroom and reading assignments, including being an active participant in the class. Students are required to take and develop his / her own class notes, with an emphasis on continually improving one’s skills at note-taking. Readings will include items from the textbook and other sources, and may be given in class, accessed online by the student, or placed on reserve in the library for the student to check-out. Either way, the student is responsible for acquiring and maintaining this material and staying current with them since they normally correspond with the subjects being studied at that time.

3. Arrive and take all scheduled exams at the time and date prescribed by the instructor. Missing of exams without permission from the instructor is not authorized, and will result in a grade of zero for that exam. Any  allowed makeup exams must also be taken at the time and date established by the instructor. Students are also expected to take and complete any daily grade exercises given throughout the semester, the details of each varying per instructor and described in greater detail in the below sections. Makeup assignments on daily grade exercises are limited, and will be explained in greater detail by each specific instructor.

Methods of Instruction/Course Format/Delivery

Instruction Methods vary among instructors, although most instruction generally will consist of lectures, reading assignments, class discussions, handouts, audio-visual and other historically-related presentations. Distance learning and online instructors will use current technology to facilitate these specific class environments. Your instructor will notify you in advance of any alterations to this format, or the integration of any other mediums of delivery to the class. The periodic daily grade exercises and unit exams are also integral parts of the instructional delivery process, and are discussed in greater detail under Assessment.


The following items will be assigned during the semester & used to calculate the learner’s final grade:

  • Exams will count as 75% of the student’s overall course grade for the semester.
  • Daily Grades will count as 25% of the student’s overall course grade for the semester.

The grading scale for this course is as follows, A=100-90, B=89-80, C=79-70, D=69-60, F=59 and below.

Text, Required Readings, Materials, and Supplies

All students are required to purchase the textbook entitled Spielvogel. Western Civilization: A Brief History, 4th ed.,Wadsworth, 2007. Students are also responsible for pens, paper, notebooks, and any other materials necessary to take participate in class or to complete homework assignments.