What Do High School Students Learn in World History?

World history is a fascinating subject that high school students get to learn about. The course covers a vast range of topics that span across different time periods and regions of the world. In this article, we will explore what high school students learn in world history.

Early Civilizations

The course starts with the study of early civilizations, such as Mesopotamia, Egypt, and the Indus Valley. Students learn about their social systems, political structures, technological advancements, and cultural practices. They also learn about ancient Greece and Rome and their contributions to modern civilization.

The Middle Ages

The Middle Ages is another important period covered in the course. Students learn about feudalism, the role of the Catholic Church in Europe, and the Crusades. They also study the Byzantine Empire and its influence on Eastern Europe.

The Renaissance

The Renaissance was a period of great cultural and intellectual awakening in Europe. Students learn about artistic achievements such as Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa and Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel ceiling. They also study major historical figures like Galileo Galilei and William Shakespeare.

Colonialism and Imperialism

Another important part of world history that high school students study is colonialism and imperialism. They learn about European colonization in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, including the slave trade, exploitation of resources, and resistance movements.

World War I

World War I was a major event that shaped the course of world history. Students study its causes, major battles like Verdun and Somme, trench warfare tactics used on both sides of the conflict, as well as its aftermath with the Treaty of Versailles.

World War II

World War II was even more catastrophic than World War I. High school students learn about its causes such as Hitler’s rise to power, the invasion of Poland, and the attack on Pearl Harbor. They also study major events such as D-Day, Stalingrad, and the Holocaust.

The Cold War

The Cold War was a period of political tension between the United States and the Soviet Union. Students learn about its causes, major events like the Cuban Missile Crisis, and its impact on international relations.


In recent times, globalization has become an important topic in world history. Students study the economic and cultural aspects of globalization, including its benefits and challenges.


In conclusion, high school students learn a wide range of topics in world history that span across different eras and regions. The course provides them with an understanding of how different societies developed over time and how they are interconnected with each other. It also helps students develop critical thinking skills by analyzing historical events and their impact on modern-day society.