How Many Units Are in AP World History?

If you’re wondering how many units are in AP World History, you’re not alone. This challenging course covers a vast amount of material, spanning thousands of years of human history and encompassing countless cultures and civilizations.

So, how is all of this information broken down into manageable units? Let’s take a closer look.

The Basics

AP World History is typically divided into six major periods, each of which covers a different era in human history. These periods are:

  • Period 1: Technological and Environmental Transformations (to c. 600 BCE)
  • Period 2: Organization and Reorganization of Human Societies (c. 600 BCE to c. 600 CE)
  • Period 3: Regional and Transregional Interactions (c. 600 CE to c. 1450 CE)
  • Period 4: Global Interactions (c. 1450 CE to c.1750 CE)
  • Period 5: Industrialization and Global Integration (c.1750 CE to c.1900 CE)
  • Period 6: Accelerating Global Change and Realignments (c.1900 CE to the present)

Each period is further divided into specific topics or themes that highlight key developments or trends during that time period.

The Units

While the exact number of units may vary depending on your school or teacher, most AP World History courses are structured around six units, each one corresponding to one of the six major periods outlined above.

Here are some examples of the topics that might be covered within each unit:

Unit One

  • The Neolithic Revolution
  • The Emergence of Civilization
  • The Development of Agriculture
  • The Rise of Early Empires

Unit Two

  • The Rise and Spread of World Religions
  • The Development of Classical Empires
  • The Fall of Classical Empires and the End of the Ancient Era
  • The Emergence of New States and Empires in Post-Classical Era

Unit Three

  • The Rise of Islam and its Global Impact
  • Medieval Europe and the Byzantine Empire
  • Civilizations of Africa and Asia in the Post-Classical Era
  • Mongol Empire, Silk Road, and Indian Ocean Trade

Unit Four

  • Age of Exploration & Conquest: The Americas & Beyond
    < li > European Renaissance & Reformation
    < li > Gunpowder Empires & Absolutism
    < li > Commercial Revolution, Capitalism, Atlantic Slave Trade, & Columbian Exchange.

    Unit Five

      < li > Enlightenment Thought & Revolutionary Ideas in America & France.
      < li > Industrial Revolution, Imperialism, Nationalism in Europe.

      < li > Responses to Industrialization: Japan, Ottoman Empire, Russia.
      < li > Global Migration and Demographic Changes: Africa, Asia, Latin America.

      Unit Six:

      • World War I and its aftermath
      • The Interwar Period and the Rise of Totalitarianism
      • World War II and the Cold War
      • The Emergence of a Global Economy and Society
      • New Social Movements and Political Changes in the Late Twentieth Century


      In conclusion, AP World History is a challenging course that covers a vast amount of material. The course is typically divided into six major periods, each with its own set of topics or themes.

      While the exact number of units may vary, most courses are structured around six units that correspond to these major periods. With hard work and dedication, however, you can master this fascinating subject and gain a deeper understanding of human history as a whole.