HST 120 The History of Europe to 1648

HST 120 IS Sec 1, University of Mississippi
[See UM Catalog for Description]

3 credit hours

Instructor Information:

Wendy Smith, PhD.

Instructor name:
Wendy Smith, PhD.


Wendy Smith earned a MA degree in Classics in 2002 and a PhD in history in 2012. She earned both degrees from the University of Mississippi. She has taught undergraduate courses for the university for a number of years. Her research and teaching interests focus on 20th century US history with an emphasis on Labor, Women and the South as well as ancient and early modern history.

Contact Information:

If you have questions concerning the content of the course, you may contact the instructor directly using the Email Your Instructor link in the Lessons or Content page. NOTE: Whenever sending email, please be sure to indicate your course title and number in the subject line. You can expect a response within 72 hours, although it may be longer on weekends. Many instructors reply within 24 hours.

For lesson or test administration issues, please contact the iStudy department:

The University of Mississippi
Division of Outreach and Continuing Education
P. O. Box 1848
University, MS 38677

Phone: (662) 915-7313, toll-free (877) 915-7313
Fax: (662) 915-8826
E-mail: istudy@olemiss.edu

Course Description

This course will introduce students to important political, social, cultural and intellectual developments in European history from the prehistoric era to the mid-seventh century. Any complete understanding of today's world must take into account the meaning of Western civilization and the role it has played in history. Despite modern progress, we still greatly reflect our religious traditions, our political systems and theories, our economic and social structures, and our cultural heritage. The study of Western civilization assists you in learning more about the past as well as the world in which you live. You will have the opportunity to learn the practice of history as you analyze primary sources and move beyond the basics of who, what and when to look at the why of history.

Textbook Information:

Textbook information will be provided upon enrollment in your iStudy course.

Course Objectives:

Objectives include (but are not limited to):

  1. To gain a command of important specific phenomena - names, dates, events - in the history of Western civilization
  2. To develop an awareness of the broader trends, themes, and patterns in which those phenomena occurred
  3. To understand why specific phenomena and broader patterns matter, both historically and in our daily lives
  4. To improve the capacity for critical thinking
  5. To use technology and a variety of multi-media tools to enhance our exploration and understanding of the past

Course Outline:

This course consists of 14 instructional modules (or lessons) and 3 proctored exams.

You MUST take the syllabus quiz within 2 weeks of enrolling or you will be dropped from the course. NOTE: you must pass the Syllabus and Orientation Quiz for the course materials to appear on the Lessons page.


Reading Assignments

Due for Grades

Pacing guide to complete the course in a semester


*You MUST complete the syllabus quiz as soon as you have access to your Blackboard course. This is mandatory to verify your attendance.* NOTE: you must pass the Syllabus and Orientation Quiz for the course materials to appear on the Lessons page.

Syllabus Quiz

Week 1


Introduction to the course and MindTap

MindTap assignments
Doing History

Week 1


Chapter 1: The Ancient Near East: The First Civilizations

MindTap assignments

Week 2


Chapter 2: The Ancient Near East: Peoples and Empires

MindTap assignments
Writing Assignment

Week 3


Extra Credit: Pyramids video and video assignment




Chapter 3: The Civilizations of the Greeks

MindTap assignments
Writing Assignment

Week 4


Extra Credit: Marathon video and video assignment




Chapter 4: The Hellenistic World

MindTap assignments

Week 5

Mid Course Exam 1

Covering chapters 1-4 (lessons 2-5)

To be scheduled
and completed
before proceeding

End of Week 5


Chapter 5: The Roman Republic

MindTap assignments
Writing Assignment

Week 6


Extra Credit: Nero video and video assignment




Chapter 6: The Roman Empire

MindTap assignments
Writing Assignment

Week 7


If you are a semester student, you must reach the midpoint of your course by the date specified in your information.
If you are a Flex UM student, you CANNOT WITHDRAW from this course after the lesson has been submitted.

All lesson assignments or exams needed to reach the midpoint of the course

The exact date semester students are required to reach the midpoint is specified in your information.


Chapter 7: Late Antiquity and the Emergence of the Medieval World

MindTap assignments

Week 8


Extra Credit: the Franks video and video assignment




Chapter 8: Early Middle Ages

MindTap assignments

Week 9

Mid Course Exam 2

Covering chapters 5-8 (lessons 6-9)

To be scheduled
and completed
before proceeding

End of Week 9


Chapter 9: High Middle Ages

MindTap assignments
Writing Assignment

Week 10


Chapter 10: The Rise of Kingdoms and the Growth of Church Power

MindTap assignments

Week 11


Extra Credit: Vikings video and video assignment




Chapter 11: The Later Middle Ages: Crisis and Disintegration in the 14th Century

MindTap assignments

Week 12


Chapter 12: The Renaissance

MindTap assignments

Week 13


Chapter 13: The Reformation and Religious Wars

MindTap assignments
Writing Assignment

Week 14


Extra Credit: Renaissance video and video assignment



Final Exam

Covering chapters 9-13 (lessons 10-14)

To be scheduled
and completed
to finalize credit

Week 15


94-100 A
90-93 A-
87-89 B+
82-86 B
80-82 B-
77-79 C+
73-76 C
70-72 C-
67-69 D+
60-66 D
59 & below F


You must submit the lessons required to take the course exam(s). Lessons required but not submitted will receive a grade of zero. For the final exam, all coursework must be submitted and graded.