About This Chapter
AP World History: Foundational Concepts - Chapter Summary
Gain a solid understanding of foundational concepts in world history to prepare for the AP World History exam. Engaging video lessons and transcripts cover the ideas and facts you need to know to score well on the test. By watching these lessons, you'll learn about:
- The six historical periods
- Causes and effects of historical change
- Geographical regions
- The role of geography and climate in the settlement of people
- Recurring themes in history
The lessons in this chapter convey the big-picture ideas that will make it possible for you to grasp more complex concepts in world history. A broad survey of world history begins with identifying major periods in history, along with factors that brought, and continue to bring about, change.
AP World History Objectives
The AP World History exam is given every May and includes a combination of multiple choice and free response questions. The test usually takes about three hours. The lessons in this chapter provide a framework of world history that prepares you for further study. The foundational concepts you'll learn include:
- The periods of world history and their corresponding dates
- The definition of 'civilization' and its common characteristics
- Common themes across historical periods
- The world's main geographical regions
The entire test consists of 70 multiple-choice questions and three short-answer questions. The topics in this chapter lay the groundwork and apply to each subject on the test.
1. Periods of World History: Overviews of Eras from 8000 B.C.E to the Present
In this lesson, we will look at the six periods of world history. We will learn the defining characteristics of each and highlight the major themes associated with each period.
2. What is a Civilization? - Definition & Common Elements
In this lesson, we will define the term civilization. We will identify the core characteristics of a civilization, and understand the function of civilizations in the context of historical development.
3. Historical Change: Causes and Effects
In this lesson, we will examine historical change. We will learn what factors contribute to historical change and see how historical change is perceived through different classifications.
4. The Five Major Geographical Regions in AP World History
In this lesson, we will look at geography according to the AP World History curriculum. We will identify and highlight the major geographical regions throughout the world.
5. Geography and Climate: Effects on Civilizations
In this lesson, we will look at the relationship between geography, climate, and civilization. We will learn why civilizations develop in particular regions and how this leads to lifestyle and cultural differences.
6. Recurring Themes in History: Societal Migration, Evolution, Aggression & Industrialization
In this lesson, we will examine some recurring themes throughout history. We will see how societal migration, cultural transformation, conflicts, industrialization, and other trends help facilitate historical development.
Earning College Credit
Did you know… We have over 160 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.
To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page
Transferring credit to the school of your choice
Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.
Other chapters within the AP World History: Exam Prep course
- AP World History: Major Belief Systems
- AP World History: Ancient Times
- AP World History: Ancient Middle East
- AP World History: Ancient China, Africa, India & America
- AP World History: Ancient Greece
- AP World History: Hellenism and Athenian Philosophy
- AP World History: The Rise of the Roman Republic
- AP World History: The Fall of the Roman Empire
- AP World History: The Dark Ages
- AP World History: Early Middle Ages
- AP World History: The Medieval Warm Period
- AP World History: The High Middle Ages
- AP World History: Asia, Africa & America (1000-1300 CE)
- AP World History: The Late Middle Ages
- AP World History: The Renaissance
- AP World History: The Age of Exploration
- AP World History: The Reformation Across Europe
- AP World History: The Elizabethan Era
- AP World History: The Enlightenment
- AP World History: Political, Technological, and Intellectual Developments (1750-1914)
- AP World History: Colonialism
- AP World History: Imperialism
- AP World History: World War I
- AP World History: World War II
- AP World History: The Cold War and Other 20th Century World History
- AP World History: A Globalized World - 1980 & Beyond
- Portions of the AP World History Exam
- How to Write a Good Essay on Your AP Exam
- Developing and Writing Your AP Exam Essay
- AP World History Flashcards