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HIS3002 The Twentieth Century

Semester 2, 2021 Online
Short Description: The Twentieth Century
Units : 1
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts
School or Department : School of Humanities & Communication
Student contribution band : 2021 Grandfather Funding Cl 1
ASCED code : 090305 - History
Grading basis : Graded
Version produced : 19 June 2021


Examiner: Jayne Persian


Pre-requisite: Any two courses of History or International Relations

Other requisites

Students will require access to e-mail and have internet access to UConnect for this course.


The twentieth century is central to students who wish to understand history, international relations and the contemporary world. The recent global past is also a notable content area in schools’ Modern History syllabus, and the course is therefore crucial for intending secondary teachers. Beyond content-specific knowledge, the course will provide students with advanced skills in critical thinking, enabling future research and life-long learning.


Students trace the key events, themes and ideologies that shaped the world in the twentieth century. They examine social and political histories, and consider the manner in which international and local events have impacted people's everyday life. Course themes include ideas of popular resistance, terrorism and warfare, democracy, and decolonisation. Attention will also be given to structures of gender, poverty and race in order to understand the broad social, political and cultural movements that shaped the contemporary world.


On completion of this course students should have:

  1. an informed and critical awareness of historical developments across the world in the twentieth century;
  2. an ability to identify and critique a variety of conceptual and scholarly approaches to history in the period;
  3. academic literacy and research skills in locating and interpreting relevant primary sources;
  4. an ability to analyse the key events, personalities, and ideologies that shaped the century;
  5. a capacity to construct an evidence-based argument.


Description Weighting(%)
1. Colonialism and the status quo: the European Ascendancy 7.60
2. Colonialism and change: the Rise of Germany and Japan 7.70
3. Social conflict and war: the First World War and the Russian Revolution 7.70
4. Social conflict and the economy: the United States and Spain 7.70
5. Totalitarianism and consent: Germany and the Soviet Union 7.70
6. Totalitarianism and violence: the Second World War in Europe and Asia 7.70
7. Totalitarianism and culture: the Cold War in Europe and Asia 7.70
8. Democracy and decolonisation: India and southeast Asia 7.70
9. Democracy and nationalism: Latin America 7.70
10. Democracy and race: the Indian subcontinent and southern Africa 7.70
11. International order and cooperation: the League of Nations and the United Nations 7.70
12. International order and conflict: the Middle East 7.70
13. International order and ideology: the American Ascendancy and end of the Cold War 7.70

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

Findley, CV & Rothney, JA 2011, Twentieth century world, 7th edn, Houghton Mifflin Co, Boston.

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.
Calvocoressi, P 2009, World politics since 1945, 9th edn, Pearson Education, New York.
Duiker, WJ 2020, Contemporary world history, 7th edn, Wadsworth/Thomson Learning, Belmont.
Gilbert, M 2001, History of the twentieth century, Harper Collins, London.
Keylor, WR 2011, The twentieth century world: an international history, 6th edn, Oxford University Press, New York.
Overy, R 2004, The dictators: Hitler's Germany and Stalin's Russia, Penguin, London.

Student workload expectations

Activity Hours
Directed Study 39.00
Independent Study 126.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Notes
ONLINE QUIZZES 100 40 13 Jul 2021 (see note 1)
LITERATURE REVIEW 1000 WORDS 100 20 17 Aug 2021
RESEARCH ESSAY 2000 WORDS 100 40 28 Sep 2021

  1. The online quizzes should be taken by the student on completion of the first and second half of the course. The exact dates will be advised in the first week of lectures.

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    Students must attend and complete the requirements of the Workplace Health and Safety training program for this course where required.

    External and Online:
    There are no attendance requirements for this course. However, it is the students’ responsibility to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration.

    It is the students’ responsibility to attend and participate appropriately in all activities (such as lectures, tutorials, laboratories and practical work) scheduled for them, and to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To satisfactorily complete an individual assessment item a student must achieve at least 50% of the marks.

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    Students should refer to the Assessment Procedure (point 4.2.4)

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To be assured of receiving a passing grade a student must achieve at least 50% of the total weighted marks available for the course.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    The final grades for students will be assigned on the basis of the aggregate of the weighted marks obtained for each of the summative assessment items in the course.

  6. Examination information:
    There is no examination for this course.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    There is no examination in this course, there will be no deferred or supplementary examinations.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Other requirements

  1. Students can expect that questions in assessment items in this course may draw upon knowledge and skills that they can reasonably be expected to have acquired before enrolling in the course. This includes knowledge contained in pre-requisite courses and appropriate communication, information literacy, analytical, critical thinking, problem solving or numeracy skills. Students who do not possess such knowledge and skills should not expect to achieve the same grades as those students who do possess them.

Date printed 19 June 2021