Step 1

By , September 24, 2019 3:11 pm

Step 1

Welcome to your big project. It will be done in steps throughout the rest of the course. You will learn so much, not only about your chosen civilization, but about researching, writing, thinking, and being creative.


Step 1 – Library in October






Choose your civ. Take some notes. Write some questions.



due date for notes and inquiry questions: Thurs. Oct. 10, 2019

Tips for Researching:

My dear class, I know that research can be difficult, especially at the beginning when you don’t know much about your topic. That’s why we start with general information about your civ (such as PERSIAT overview)! Use the index of the books you choose. Look up your  civ if it’s a book that includes more than one civilization in it. If it’s a book specific to your topic, start by looking up the basic PERSIAT headings. Don’t become a specialist yet. Get a wide overview.

Using a structured note-taking template will really help you to keep your notes organized. The general point column in particular is very helpful. It makes you think about what you’re writing about instead of just mindlessly copying it out. The PERSIAT heading goes in this column (the second column from the left).

You need three sources. All can be books – that’s most preferred. If you want to use an Internet source you’ll have to do a CRAAP test to check the website’s reliability and relevance. CHW3M_CRAAP_Test_2017-18

For electronic sources, go to the YM Library website. Click on databases on the menu at the top. Then scroll down to social sciences.  If you don’t know how to use databases like EBSCO History Reference Centre please let me know and I’ll show you.  You may also find useful material on the Global Issues in Context database. I used it for a tonne of stuff for my grade 12 essay last year! Encyclopedia Britannica can also be found in the list of databases under general.


Inquiry Questions:

As you research, you should be able to come up with some questions that will guide your further research. They shouldn’t be factual. They should be deep and inquiring. Of course you’ll be able to revise them in the future as you learn more about your topic or choose to narrow in on certain areas.

Here’s an example for me on the Inca civilization, one I’m hoping to do more research on:

“How did such a technologically advanced society thrive without a system of writing?”

Try not to make them too vague, such as “why did this civilization decline?” Take that general question and give it more personality; in other words, show more awareness of complexity. Even with our limited knowledge of the decline of Indus Valley Civilization we can ask more than why did it decline. We can ask:

“Was the decline of Indus Valley civilization gradual or immediate?”

“Was the decline of Indus Valley caused more by natural or human-made factors?”

To help you write good questions, use the questioning grid on the blog (here’s the link to the page).



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