AP World History Teacher

The New Curriculum Framework: Changes and Continuities

images-2Fortunately, the content changes in the new Curriculum Framework are much heavier on the Continuity side of the CCOT equation. I have made a list below of the most salient changes per time period. However, if you want a detailed side-by-side look at the old and new Key Concept framework, you can see it HERE.

NOTE: The fact that an item is no longer required does NOT mean you shouldn’t teach it. It simply means the test writers cannot assume that the students have specific knowledge of it. The elimination of required content actually frees us to use whatever examples we want to teach the concepts, which are what we should be teaching anyway.

Period 1

  • In KC 1.1.II.C., the list of required tools is gone. Just teach one or more as illustrative examples.
  • The Code of Hammurabi is no longer required
  • Required examples of transregional trade have been reduced to illustrative examples
  • Literature is no longer a required example of reflections of culture (i.e., Epic of Gilgamesh)

Period 2

  • Knowledge of locations of key states now includes Chaco and Cahokia of North America

Period 3

  • Caravanserai changed from illustrative example to required example of organization of luxury goods
  • Incan road system and Hanseatic League now required
  • Zheng He is now in Period 3 where he lived rather than Period 4 paired with Columbus
  • Bubonic plague required example of disease pathogens

Period 4

  • Zheng He removed and added to Period 3
  • Oceana and Polynesia removed from examples of “Remarkable new transoceanic maritime reconnaissance.”
  • Each of the following have changed from required content to illustrative examples: Sunni-Shia split, Protestant Reformation, formation of syncretic belief systems.

Period 5

  • Steam power and its contribution to the Industrial Revolution is required.
  • Marxism is now required
  • Qing and Ottoman reform movements are now specifically required
  • Millenarian reactions to imperialism is now classified as “diverse religions ideas”

Period 6

  • Statements about global warming simplified into one statement about climate change
  • Fall of Soviet Union no longer required
  • Sources of global conflicts simplified and consolidated
  • Sports and film no longer required examples of global culture

So there are the most significant changes. Again, the elimination of required content does not mean you shouldn’t teach it. A shorter list of required content makes our life easier but the task of the question writers more difficult. They’re the ones who have to figure out how to assess knowledge of a concept without reference to a specific example of it.

Hope this helps.