World History Unit Tests

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Created for a course based on The Georgia Performance Standards: World History.

There are 21 standards which are organized into eight units. While the units may not match your particular curriculum map, individual questions can be easily copy-and-pasted to suite your needs.

Most of the tests include multiple-choice questions (80% of the total grade) and short answer/essay questions (20% of the grade.)

Each unit test is a separate Word document which can be edited. The titles indicate which standards are included in each test.

Answer keys are included for the multiple-choice. Correct answers are underlined. A rubric is included for essay questions.

Standards: (Source)

SSWH1 The student will analyze the origins, structures, and interactions of complex societies in the ancient Eastern Mediterranean from 3500 BCE to 500 BCE.
a. Describe the development of Mesopotamian societies; include the religious, cultural, economic, and political facets of society, with attention to Hammurabi’s law code.
b. Describe the relationship of religion and political authority in Ancient Egypt.
c. Explain the development of monotheism; include the concepts developed by the ancient Hebrews, and Zoroastrianism.
d. Describe early trading networks in the Eastern Mediterranean; include the impact Phoenicians had on the Mediterranean World.
e. Explain the development and importance of writing; include cuneiform, hieroglyphics, and the Phoenician alphabet.

SSWH2 The student will identify the major achievements of Chinese and Indian societies from 1100 BCE to 500 CE.
a. Describe the development of Indian civilization; include the rise and fall of the Maurya Empire, the “Golden Age” under Gupta, and the emperor Ashoka.
b. Explain the development and impact of Hinduism and Buddhism on India and subsequent diffusion of Buddhism.
c. Describe the development of Chinese civilization under the Zhou and Qin.
d. Explain the impact of Confucianism on Chinese culture; include the examination system, the Mandate of Heaven, the status of peasants, the status of merchants, and the patriarchal family, and explain diffusion to Southeast Asia, Japan, and Korea.
e. Explain how the geography of the Indian Subcontinent contributed to the movement of people and ideas.

SSWH3 The student will examine the political, philosophical, and cultural interaction of Classical Mediterranean societies from 700 BCE to 400 CE.
a. Compare the origins and structure of the Greek polis, the Roman Republic, and the Roman Empire.
b. Identify the ideas and impact of important individuals; include Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle and describe the diffusion of Greek culture by Aristotle’s pupil Alexander the Great and the impact of Julius and Augustus Caesar.
c. Analyze the contributions of Hellenistic and Roman culture; include law, gender, and science.
d. Describe polytheism in the Greek and Roman world and the origins and diffusion of Christianity in the Roman world.
e. Analyze the factors that led to the collapse of the Western Roman Empire.

SSWH4 The student will analyze the importance of the Byzantine and Mongol empires between 450 CE and 1500 CE.
a. Analyze the importance of Justinian, include the influence of the Empress Theodora, Justinian’s Code, and Justinian’s efforts to recapture the west.
b. Describe the relationship between the Roman and Byzantine Empires; include the impact Byzantium had on Moscow and the Russian Empire, the effect of Byzantine culture on Tsar Ivan III and Kiev, and the rise of Constantinople as a center for law, religion, and the arts.
c. Explain the Great Schism of 1054 CE.
d. Analyze the spread of the Mongol Empire; include the role of Chinggis (Genghis) Khan in developing the empire, the impact of the Mongols on Russia, China and the West, the development of trade, and European observations through the writings of Marco Polo.
e. Explain the Ottoman Empire’s role in the decline of Byzantium and the capture of Constantinople in 1453 CE.
SSWH5 The student will trace the origins and expansion of the Islamic World between 600 CE and 1300 CE.
a. Explain the origins of Islam and the growth of the Islamic Empire.
b. Identify the Muslim trade routes to India, China, Europe, and Africa and assess the economic impact of this trade.
c. Explain the reasons for the split between Sunni and Shia Muslims.
d. Identify the contributions of Islamic scholars in medicine (Ibn Sina) and geography (Ibn Battuta).
e. Describe the impact of the Crusades on both the Islamic World and Europe.
f. Analyze the relationship between Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

SSWH6 The student will describe the diverse characteristics of early African societies before 1800 CE.
a. Identify the Bantu migration patterns and contribution to settled agriculture.
b. Describe the development and decline of the Sudanic kingdoms (Ghana, Mali, Songhai); include the roles of Sundiata, and the pilgrimage of Mansa Musa to Mecca.
c. Describe the trading networks by examining trans-Saharan trade in gold, salt, and slaves; include the Swahili trading cities.
d. Analyze the process of religious syncretism as a blending of traditional African beliefs with new ideas from Islam and Christianity.
e. Analyze the role of geography and the distribution of resources played in the development of trans-Saharan trading networks.

SSWH7 The student will analyze European medieval society with regard to culture, politics, society, and economics.
a. Explain the manorial system and feudalism; include the status of peasants and feudal monarchies and the importance of Charlemagne.
b. Describe the political impact of Christianity; include Pope Gregory VII and King Henry IV of Germany (Holy Roman Emperor).
c. Explain the role of the church in medieval society.
d. Describe how increasing trade led to the growth of towns and cities.

SSWH8 The student will demonstrate an understanding of the development of societies in Central and South America.

a. Explain the rise and fall of the Olmec, Mayan, Aztec, and Inca empires.

b. Compare the culture of the Americas; include government, economy, religion, and the arts of the Mayans, Aztecs, and Incas.

SSWH9 The student will analyze change and continuity in the Renaissance and Reformation.
a. Explain the social, economic, and political changes that contributed to the rise of Florence and the ideas of Machiavelli.
b. Identify artistic and scientific achievements of Leonardo da Vinci, the “Renaissance man,” and Michelangelo.
c. Explain the main characteristics of humanism; include the ideas of Petrarch, Dante, and Erasmus.
d. Analyze the impact of the Protestant Reformation; include the ideas of Martin Luther and John Calvin.
e. Describe the Counter Reformation at the Council of Trent and the role of the Jesuits.
f. Describe the English Reformation and the role of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I.
g. Explain the importance of Gutenberg and the invention of the printing press.

SSWH10 The student will analyze the impact of the age of discovery and expansion into the Americas, Africa, and Asia.
a. Explain the roles of explorers and conquistadors; include Zheng He, Vasco da Gama, Christopher Columbus, Ferdinand Magellan, James Cook, and Samuel de Champlain.
b. Define the Columbian Exchange and its global economic and cultural impact.
c. Explain the role of improved technology in European exploration; include the astrolabe.

SSWH11 Students will investigate political and social changes in Japan and in China from the seventeenth century CE to mid-nineteenth century CE.

a. Describe the policies of the Tokugawa and Qing rules; include how Oda Nobunaga laid the ground work for the subsequent Tokugawa rulers and how Kangxi came to rule for such a long period in China.

b. Analyze the impact of population growth and its impact on the social structure of Japan and China.
SSWH12 The student will examine the origins
and contributions of the Ottoman, Safavid, and Mughal empires.
a. Describe the geographical extent of the Ottoman Empire during the rule of Suleyman the Magnificent, the Safavid Empire during the reign of Shah Abbas I, and the Mughal Empire during the reigns of Babur and Akbar.
b. Explain the ways in which these Muslim empires influenced religion, law, and the arts in their parts of the world.

SSWH13 The student will examine the intellectual, political, social, and economic factors that changed the world view of Europeans.
a. Explain the scientific contributions of Copernicus, Galileo, Kepler, and Newton and how these ideas changed the European world view.

b. Identify the major ideas of the Enlightenment from the writings of Locke, Voltaire, and Rousseau and their relationship to politics and society.

SSWH14 The student will analyze the Age of Revolutions and Rebellions.
a. Examine absolutism through a comparison of the rules of Louis XIV, Tsar Peter the Great, and Tokugawa Ieyasu.
b. Identify the causes and results of the revolutions in England (1689), United States (1776), France (1789), Haiti (1791), and Latin America (1808-1825).
c. Explain Napoleon’s rise to power, the role of geography in his defeat, and the consequences of France’s defeat for Europe
d. Examine the interaction of China and Japan with westerners; include the Opium War, the Taiping Rebellion, and Commodore Perry.

SSWH15 The student will be able to describe the impact of industrialization, the rise of nationalism, and the major characteristics of worldwide imperialism.
a. Analyze the process and impact of industrialization in England, Germany, and Japan, movements for political reform, the writings of Adam Smith and Karl Marx, and urbanization and its affect on women.
b. Compare and contrast the rise of the nation state in Germany under Otto von Bismarck and Japan under Emperor Meiji.
c. Describe the reaction to foreign domination; include the Russo-Japanese War and Young Turks, and the Boxer Rebellion.
d. Describe imperialism in Africa and Asia by comparing British policies in Africa, French policies in Indochina, and Japanese policies in Asia; include the influence of geography and natural resources.

SSWH16 The student will demonstrate an understanding of long-term causes of World War I and its global impact.
a. Identify the causes of the war; include Balkan nationalism, entangling alliances, and militarism.
b. Describe conditions on the war front for soldiers; include the Battle of Verdun.
c. Explain the major decisions made in the Versailles Treaty; include German reparations and the mandate system that replaced Ottoman control.
d. Analyze the destabilization of Europe in the collapse of the great empires; include the Romanov and Hapsburg dynasties.

SSWH17 The student will be able to identify the major political and economic factors that shaped world societies between World War I and World War II.
a. Examine the influence of Albert Einstein on science, Sigmund Freud on social thinking and Pablo Picasso on art.
b. Determine the causes and results of the Russian Revolution from the rise of the Bolsheviks under Lenin to Stalin’s first Five Year Plan.
c. Describe the rise of fascism in Europe and Asia by comparing the policies of Benito Mussolini in Italy, Adolf Hitler in Germany, and Hirohito in Japan.
d. Analyze the rise of nationalism as seen in the ideas of Sun Yat Sen, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, and Mohandas Gandhi.
e. Describe the nature of totalitarianism and the police state that existed in Russia, Germany, and Italy and how they differ from authoritarian governments.
f. Explain the aggression and conflict leading to World War II in Europe and Asia; include the Italian invasion of Ethiopia, the Spanish Civil War, the Rape of Nanjing in China, and the German annexation of the Sudetenland.

SSWH18 The student will demonstrate an understanding
of the global political, economic, and social impact of World War II.
a. Describe the major conflicts and outcomes; include Pearl Harbor, El-Alamein, Stalingrad, D-Day, Guadalcanal, the Philippines, and the end of the war in Europe and Asia.
b. Identify Nazi ideology, policies, and consequences that led to the Holocaust.
c. Explain the military and diplomatic negotiations between the leaders of Great Britain (Churchill), the Soviet Union (Stalin), and the United States (Roosevelt/Truman) from Teheran to Yalta and Potsdam and the impact on the nations of Eastern Europe.
d. Explain allied Post-World War II policies; include formation of the United Nations, the Marshall Plan for Europe, and MacArthur’s plan for Japan.

SSWH19 The student will demonstrate an understanding of the global social, economic, and political impact of the Cold War and decolonization from 1945 to 1989.
a. Analyze the revolutionary movements in India (Gandhi, Nehru), China (Mao Zedong, Chiang Kai-shek), and Ghana (Kwame Nkrumah).
b. Describe the formation of the state of Israel and the importance of geography in its development.
c. Explain the arms race; include development of the hydrogen bomb (1954) and SALT (Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty, 1972).
d. Compare and contrast the reforms of Khrushchev and Gorbachev.
e. Analyze efforts in the pursuit of freedom; include anti-apartheid, Tiananmen Square, and the fall of the Berlin Wall.

SSWH20 The student will examine change and continuity in the world since the 1960s.
a. Identify ethnic conflicts and new nationalisms; include pan-Africanism, pan- Arabism, and the conflicts in Bosnia-Herzegovina and Rwanda.
b. Describe the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991 that produced independent countries; include Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and the Baltic States.
c. Analyze terrorism as a form of warfare in the 20th century; include Shining Path, Red Brigade, Hamas, and Al Qaeda; and analyze the impact of terrorism on daily life; include travel, world energy supplies, and financial markets.
d. Examine the rise of women as major world leaders; include Golda Meir, Indira Gandhi, and Margaret Thatcher.

SSWH21 The student will analyze globalization in the contemporary world.
a. Describe the cultural and intellectual integration of countries into the world economy through the development of television, satellites, and computers.
b. Analyze global economic and political connections; include multinational corporations, the United Nations, OPEC, and the World Trade Organization.
c. Explain how governments cooperate through treaties and organizations, to minimize the negative effects of human actions on the environment.
Total Pages
8 Unit Tests
Answer Key
Included with Rubric
Teaching Duration
1 Year

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World History Unit Tests
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