Using the Timemap of World History in AP European History

Introduction: The TimeMap of World History and Advanced Placement for European History


The TimeMap of World History forms a useful supplementary resource for Advanced Placement (AP) European History programs.

The maps are structured to:

– give students a clear chronological sense of what happened in European and world history, and where;

– to let them see to what extent Europe changed over time – politically, culturally, socially and economically;

– to enhance students’ understanding of the causes and consequences of different episodes in European history, seeing how they related to different episodes, and to changes in the wider world.

How does the TimeMap of World History work?

The TimeMap of World History is built around a world history atlas. This consists of three levels of map.

Level 1: World timeline – a timeline consisting of twenty maps, each showing the world at a different date in history.

Level 2: Regional timelines – timelines of maps of the “Big Regions” of world history: Europe, the Middle East, Africa, South Asia, East Asia, South East Asia, Oceania, North America and South America.

Like the World timeline, these regional timelines are also made up of twenty maps, each map showing their region at exactly the same dates as the world timeline.

Level 3: Country timelines – timelines of maps showing the histories of all the countries of the world. Not every country has its own map devoted to it, but all countries are (or will be) covered by these maps. These also have the same dates as the world and regional timelines.

Comparing, contrasting

This structure – of world, regional and country maps all at the same twenty dates through time – means that by using the TimeMap of World History, students can get a comprehensive snapshot of all that is occurring in history at a given date. They can do so at a “birds-eye” level, taking in a global or regional view; or they can take a closer look at any country in the world (when complete).

They can hop quickly and easily from world, to regional, to country level, and back again. They can move quickly and easily from one country to another, or one region to another. They can travel easily and quickly through time. They can see what’s going on in one place at a certain period, and then compare it to what’s going on in another place at the same time – or contrast this with what is occurring in the same place at different times.


As well as the maps, there is a growing series of articles covering major civilizations and regions, which should be of interest to AP European history students. These provide greater depth than the information on the map pages.

Lesson Ideas

We have prepared some lesson ideas for AP European history classes – and more will follow. They are designed to help your students use the TimeMap of World History in a focussed way, and to engage with the wide set of issues which historians grapple with, such as chronology, change and continuity and cause and consequence.

Europe – more than the sum of its parts?

…looks at how individual European countries contributed to the growth of a wider Western civilization

European Expansion in World History

…helps students explore the causes and effects of European expansion on other regions

It Didn’t Just happen in the West

…helps students understand that technological and scientific advances are not a Western monopoly, and that Western science stands on the shoulders of advances made thouands of miles away

The French Revolution – background and context

An example of how the TimeMap of World History can help students understand major episodes by enabling them to look at the historical background in a broad and effective way



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