Academic Catalog


Foothill College Course Outline of Record

Foothill College Course Outline of Record
Heading Value
Effective Term: Summer 2023
Units: 4
Hours: 4 lecture per week (48 total per quarter)
Advisory: One of the following: ENGL 1A or 1AH or ESLL 26; not open to students with credit in HUMN 1 or 1A.
Degree & Credit Status: Degree-Applicable Credit Course
Foothill GE: Area I: Humanities
Transferable: CSU/UC
Grade Type: Letter Grade (Request for Pass/No Pass)
Repeatability: Not Repeatable

Student Learning Outcomes

  • "Synthesize critical thinking, imaginative, cooperative and empathetic abilities as whole persons in order to contextualize knowledge and make meaning.
  • Explain how the ideas and values of classical Greek culture are manifested in the artistic creations of the time.
  • Explain how the art and architecture of Teotihuacan functioned to record cosmological narratives.


An interdisciplinary and thematic approach to the history of human culture and ideas. Major areas covered include Mesopotamia, Ancient Egypt, China's Han and Tang Dynasties, India's Indus Valley Civilization, the Olmec Civilization of Meso-America, Ancient Greece, and Ancient Rome, as well as the flowering of world religions. As an honors course, this is a full seminar with advanced teaching methods focusing on major writing, reading, and research assignments, student class presentations, group discussions and interactions.

Course Objectives

The student will be able to:

  1. Engage in critical, creative, and independent thinking
  2. Stimulate curiosity about intellectual and artistic life
  3. Broaden perspectives on the diversity and dilemmas of human experience and knowledge
  4. Apply critical approaches to the analysis of various modes of cultural production in relation to the political, economic, social, and religious context of the time
  5. Explain the relationship between art, social organization, and political institutions in both Western and non-Western contexts
  6. Use diverse historical periods and cultural traditions as a framework for a more complex understanding of the contemporary world
  7. Analyze cultural production as both instruments of social control and ideological change
  8. Develop the habit of learning and responding to new ideas and challenges
  9. Think through moral and ethical problems and examine one's own assumptions
  10. Improve both oral and written communication, especially through critical reading and analysis

Course Content

  1. The peopling of the world
    1. Africa: origins of mankind
    2. Paleolithic art
    3. Neolithic Revolution
  2. Early river valley civilizations
    1. Mesopotamia
    2. Egypt
  3. Mesoamerica
    1. Mexico
    2. Peru
  4. The Greek world
    1. Early Greece
    2. Classical Greece
    3. Hellenistic period
  5. The Roman Empire
    1. Etruscans
    2. Republican and imperial Rome
  6. Ancient civilization of India and China
    1. The Gupta Empire
    2. The Han and Tang Dynasties
  7. The flowering of world religion
    1. Judaism
    2. Christianity
    3. Islam
    4. Hinduism
    5. Buddhism

Lab Content

Not applicable.

Special Facilities and/or Equipment

When taught as an online section, students and faculty need ongoing and continuous internet and email access.

Method(s) of Evaluation

Methods of Evaluation may include but are not limited to the following:

Systematic and continuous participation in the course
Three or more one-page response papers
Development of research project related to the ancient world
Demonstration of critical, analytical research and writing skills
Final examination

Method(s) of Instruction

Methods of Instruction may include but are not limited to the following:

Cooperative learning exercises
Oral presentations

Representative Text(s) and Other Materials

Fiero, Gloria K.. The Humanistic Tradition, Book 1, 7th ed.. 2015.

Although this text is older than the suggested "5 years or newer" standard, it remains a seminal text in this area of study.

Excerpts from primary texts, such as:
The Egyptian Creation Myth
The Enuma Elish (Mesopotamian Creation Myth)
Homer, The Illiad
Homer, The Odyssey
Sappho's Poetry
Sophocles, Oedipus Rex
Plato, The Apology of Socrates
Artistotle, Nichomachean Ethics and or Republic
Virgil, Aeneid
Aurelius, Marcus, The Meditations
The Hebrew Bible
The New Testament
The Our'An
Buddha, The Four Noble Truths

Note: The texts listed above are classics that are no longer under copyright protection and thus freely available on the internet, in various anthologies and countless editions.

Types and/or Examples of Required Reading, Writing, and Outside of Class Assignments

  1. Philosophical and literary critical readings (15-50 pages) designed to familiarize students with ongoing debates and perspectives related to the intersection of religion, culture, and politics
  2. Bi-weekly 1-3 page essays requiring summary, interpretation, analysis, and synthesis of both original and secondary texts