A Big History of the Universe to the Present
Get a macro view of the world by studying the history of everything. Zoom out to see history at the biggest possible scale. Be there for the origins of the universe. Chart the evolution of the human race. Assess the central themes of world history.
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This research-intensive university in north-western Sydney offers a range of undergraduate and postgraduate degrees. With over 30,000 current students, Macquarie has a strong reputation for welcoming international students and embracing flexible and convenient study options, including its partnership with Open Universities Australia.
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At the completion of this subject students will be able to:
- Recognise and explain key historical phenomena, patterns, and themes across time
- Summarise the large-scale chronology of the past, identifying important thresholds
- Locate and interpret evidence about the past from a variety of disciplines
- Assess and apply selected approaches to the study of the past from a variety of disciplines
- Synthesise diverse primary and secondary evidence, from a variety of disciplines, to compose original written and oral arguments
- Origins of the Universe and Stars
- Origins of the Solar System and Earth
- Origins and Evolution of Life on Earth
- The Evolution of humans
- The earliest human societies
- Agriculture and its importance in human history
- The origins of Power and States
- Evolution of Agrarian Civilisations
- Global Ecological Exchanges
- Towards Modernity
- The Industrial Revolution and Industrialisation
- The Twentieth Century and Beyond
You cannot enrol in this subject if you have successfully completed any of the following subject(s) because they are considered academically equivalent:
- MAQ-MHIX115-An Introduction to Big History
- OtherDetails -
Students who have an Academic Standing of Suspension or Exclusion under Macquarie University's Academic Progression Policy are not permitted to enrol in OUA units offered by Macquarie University. Students with an Academic Standing of Suspension or Exclusion who have enrolled in units through OUA will be withdrawn.
This subject was previously known as MHIX115 An Introduction to Big History.
Please note: This subject is available in Macquarie Semester 3. This is an intensive semester which spans only 9 weeks (including recess). Students are advised to enrol in only one or two subjects in Semester 3.
Big History is a revolutionary new way to study the past, in which students will travel across billion of years in 13 weeks - from the Big Bang, to the formation of the Earth, the origin of life, and the 300,000 year history of Homo sapiens. By looking at the broad trends and patterns of the deep past, Big History can also explore what they imply about the future of humans in the 21st century and even shed light on the fate of the Universe. Big History is vast but easy to study because of the broad trends of historical change that unite stars and civilisations, dogs and dinosaurs, apes and artificial intelligence into one historical continuum. This allows students to glide swiftly through 13.8 billion years. Students are encouraged to think about multi-disciplinary evidence for our history of the deep past and the role that history can play in understanding the past at the largest scales. Finally, the unit invites students to think about humanity's relationship to the natural world, what this implies about the 21st century, and where we fit in the story of the cosmos. Open to students of all majors and disciplines, no prior knowledge of science or history is required.
- Essay Outline (20%)
- Essay Plan (20%)
- Participation (20%)
- Synoptic Essay (40%)
Bachelor of Arts
- Major in English
- Major in Ancient History
- Major in Modern History
- Major in Philosophy
- Major in Politics
- Major in Sociology
- Major in Creative Writing
- Major in Indigenous Studies
- Major in International Relations