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HIST 242 The Age of Exploration & Discovery • 5 Cr.


Examines the role of great explorers in world history from Marco Polo to David Livingstone. Students examine the factors encouraging exploration and discovery from medieval to modern times, as well as the results of cultural contact. May be used as social science or humanities credit, not both, at BC.


After completing this class, students should be able to:

  • Recognize the attitudes and motivations of world societies that have made exploration a major cultural theme: Examples are the Phoenicians, the Norseman, the Portugese, Spanish/ French/ English/ and Dutch of the Age of Reconnaissance, etc.
  • Identify the major world figures who undertook these endeavors such as Eric the Red, Leif Ericksson, Ibn Battufa, Vasco da Gama, Christopher Columbus, Fernao Magellan, Sir Francis Drake, James Cook, Alexander von Humboldt, Lewis and Clark, etc. and describe what they did, how and why they did it, and state the significance of their activities.
  • Describe the geopolitical global patterns that resulted from exploratory endeavors such as the nineteenth century scramble for Africa and the race to the moon of the twentieth.
  • Assessment of these outcomes will be accomplished through:
    • Timed written exams.
    • Extended untimed essays assigned for out of class preparation.
    • Where applicable map and/or document quizzes.

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Bellevue College
3000 Landerholm Circle SE Bellevue, WA 98007-6484 U.S.A.
Work: (425) 564-1000