Available in 2022
Course code



10 units


1000 level

Course handbook


This course explores the history of European encounters with the wider world, from the 'discovery' of the Americas in 1492 to the present. It investigates the people, events, myths, and ideas that have shaped European and world history. While adhering to a chronological structure, the overall approach will be thematic, covering topics that have informed Europe's complex and often troubled interactions with the peoples and places beyond its borders.



  • Semester 2 - 2022


  • Semester 2 - 2022

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Identify the main themes of Europe's encounters and interactions with the wider world.

2. Critically evaluate relevant primary and secondary sources.

3. Apply basic historical research and information literacy skills.

4. Communicate clear and concise arguments in written form relevant to the history discipline.


European encounters with the wider world shaped Europe itself. Whether investigating the 'discovery' of the Americas, and/or the building of states, empires and nations, you will study the origins and nature of Europe's interactions with the lands and peoples beyond its borders. With a focus on primary sources, the course will introduce you to some of the key events, issues and themes of the European past that still resonate today.

You will also begin to learn the foundational themes, methods and skills necessary for the study of history at the tertiary level. The course enables you to explore the historical origins of Europe's role in world affairs today. With Europe occupying a central, if contested, role on the world stage today, you will investigate the origins of this role through understanding the multiple ways that Europeans encountered the world around them.

Topics covered include:

  • war, violence and invasion;
  • political upheaval and transformation;
  • religious beliefs and practices;
  • trade, missions and empires;
  • cultural encounters and exchanges;
  • territorial discovery, expansion and colonisation;
  • slavery, migration and diasporas;
  • European encounters with the Middle East, Asia and Africa;
  • decolonisation and informal empire;
  • social, religious and cultural transformations in Europe and beyond.


This course replaces HIST1080. If you have successfully completed HIST1080 you cannot enrol in this course.

Assessment items

Written Assignment: Essay Structuring Exercise (30%)

Quiz: Short answer questions (25%)

Essay: Essay (45%)

Contact hours



Face to Face On Campus 1 hour(s) per Week for 12 Weeks starting in week 1


Face to Face On Campus 1 hour(s) per Week for 11 Weeks starting in week 1

Weeks 1-9, 11-12



Online 1 hour(s) per Week for 12 Weeks starting in week 1


Online 1 hour(s) per Week for 11 Weeks starting in week 1

Weeks 1-9, 11-12

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.