Pennsylvania Homeschoolers

AP* Online Classes

I would highly recommend this course and Mrs. Walker! Her assignments were interesting and varied, she always answered quickly and graciously, and grading was prompt and helpful.  Her feedback on my writing was a perfect mix of encouragement, corrections, and suggestions. 

AP World History

On-Line for the 2018-2019 School Year

Teacher: Mr. Peter Cahill


Seminar in AP World History

This section is full for the 2018-2019 school year.

Course description:
This course traces global history from the earliest civilizations through to the modern day across the globe. It focuses on approaching scholarly consensus with a critical perspective and practicing the tools of professional historians through extensive reading, writing, listening, hands-on projects, and case studies. Students will analyze historical evidence in primary and secondary sources to develop a historical argument using the following concepts:

            Contextualization in time and place

            Comparison across times and places

            Causation and contingency

            Change and continuity over time

Using these skills and concepts, students will develop understanding of the themes of Seminar in AP World History:

            Development and transformation of social structures

            Interaction between humans and the environment

            Development and interaction of cultures

            State building, expansion, and conflict

            Development and interaction of economic systems

Students will use these tools to learn about scholarly consensus regarding global history, and then use their own knowledge, perspectives and evidence to critique and improve their historical understanding. These themes will be explored across the six periods of the exam and across global regions. Although the entire globe is included in the course material, European and U.S. history are relatively understated due to the design of the various AP history exams. Interdisciplinary connections between history and other social sciences (economics, geography, sociology, anthropology, linguistics, etc…) will also be explored throughout the course.

This course is patterned as a university seminar. Students will be responsible for actively engaging with course material and providing analyses for discussion. Reading, writing responses/essays, and listening to and critiquing relevant presentations form the core of the course. Larger projects will also provide opportunities for students to practice transitioning between consumers of historical knowledge to producers of that knowledge. The goal of this design is to prepare students for upper level university work, especially for honours and/or research-based programs.

Class schedule: Late August through 16 May 2019. Further details TBA.

Resources: High-speed internet and a reliable computer with an internet browser. No specific software is required, although instructor-student cooperation regarding technical difficulties is expected.

Student must have a separate email address from parents. The instructor will need to communicate directly with parents on occasion.

Texts:    World Civilizations: The Global Experience by Peter Stearns. (Several versions are acceptable. Please email the instructor with the ISBN number before purchase to ensure suitability.)

              AP World History: An Essential Coursebook by Ethel Wood – 3rd edition

Tuition: $675

Who should apply: Highly motivated high-school students in any year. This class is designed specifically for those students who are interested in pursuing advanced university studies in an allied discipline (psychology, economics, geography, linguistics, etc…) due to its focus on producing original analyses and research-based knowledge. Interest in history and other social sciences, experience outside the United States and Western Europe, multilingualism, and many other personal attributes can assist the student in understanding and engaging with the material.

An application form can be found at the bottom of this page. Please do not hesitate to contact me with questions or concerns.

Instructor qualifications:

I am thrilled to be returning from “sabbatical” to teach my third year of Seminar in AP World History!

I took this course many eons ago from the PA Homeschoolers, along with ten other AP classes, achieving nine 5s. I am extremely familiar with the demands of AP courses, as well as the exams themselves, and enjoy coaching students on the specific strategies and writing styles that are rewarded by the College Board.

I attended the University of Pittsburgh and obtained a B.Phil. in Linguistics and International Studies. This included a certificate in Latin American Studies and another in Global Studies with a concentration in Africa. My coursework was focused on modern Latin American and African history, as well as the evolution of cultural practices across times and places. While at Pitt, I participated in group field research in Nicaragua on Nicaraguan Sign Language, and conducted an independent research trip to describe Honduran Sign Language, essentially undocumented at the time. After graduating, I developed profiled modern health cultures and revised guides on working with interpreters for U.S. medical personal deployed into conflict and disaster zones. I look forward to bringing this knowledge of global histories and cultures to class discussion.

I recently completed a M.Sc. in Human Communication Disorders from Dalhousie University and am practicing as a clinician in various fly-in communities in the subarctic. While at Dalhousie, I served as a research fellow for the Canadian Institutes of Health Research with the Linguistics Department at National Tsinghua University in the Republic of China (Taiwan). What I bring to the class from these experiences is predominately a strong foundation in research and knowledge production, skills I hope to share with my students during this course. Additionally, I will use this background to assist students in developing personally motivating questions, searching out appropriate evidence, synthesizing and advancing an argument, and applying that argument to answer those relevant questions.

I have lived in three countries and visited many more. Because of this, I am multilingual and have close connections across five continents. I enjoy teaching this seminar to keep up to date with the social sciences and to learn more about the many stories and perspectives of cultures across the globe.

Click here to open or download an application to this class (Microsoft Word document)

Click here to read class reviews from past participants
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