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Capuchino High School

Subject Guide

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Jessica Silver-Sharp
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Welcome to Skyline College Library

Welcome, IB students of Capuchino High!

This Student Research Guide is designed to help you find, understand and cite articles for your research paper using resources available to you through Skyline College Library.

Please use the dark RED tabs on the left  to search for Introducing OneSearch, The Research Question, Search StrategyArticle Databases, Evaluating Search Results, and Citing Sources

Assignment Topics

Emergence of the Americas in global affairs (1880–1929) 

This section focuses on the impact of modernization in the region on foreign policy, including an exploration of the involvement of the region in the First World War. Modernization shaped the new nations, and its effects created the basis for a major shift in the foreign policies of the region. By the end of the 19th century, for example, the United States played a more active role in world affairs and in the affairs of Latin America in particular, thus transforming inter-American relations. When the First World War ended, its impact was felt in the economic, social and foreign policies of the participating countries.

  • United States’ expansionist foreign policies: political, economic, social and ideological reasons
  •  Spanish–American War (1898): causes and effects
  •  Impact of United States’ foreign policies: the Big Stick; Dollar Diplomacy; Moral Diplomacy
  • United States and the First World War: from neutrality to involvement; reasons for US entry into the First World War; Wilson’s peace ideals and the struggle for ratification of the Treaty of Versailles in the United States; significance of the war for the United States’ hemispheric status
  • Involvement of either Canada
  • or one Latin American country in the First World War: nature of, and reasons for, involvement
  • Impact of the First World War on any two countries of the Americas: economic, political, social and foreign policies

Assignment Topics

United  States’  Civil  War:  Causes,  course  and  effects  (1840–1877) 

This section focuses on the United States’ Civil War between the North and the South (1861–1865), which is often perceived as the great watershed in the history of the United States. It transformed the country forever, but the war created a new set of problems: how would the country be reunited? How would the South rebuild its society and economy? How would the four million freed former slaves fit into society? 

  • Slavery: cotton economy and slavery; conditions of enslavement; adaptation and resistance; abolitionist debate—ideological, legal, religious and economic arguments for and against slavery, and their  impact

  • Origins of the Civil War: the Nullification Crisis; states’ rights; sectionalism; slavery; political issues; economic  differences  between  the  North  and  South 

  • Reasons for, and effects of, westward expansion and the sectional debates; the crises of the 1850s; compromise of 1850; political developments, including the Lincoln–Douglas debates and the presidential  election  of  1860 

  • Union versus Confederate: strengths and weaknesses; economic resources; role and significance of leaders during the Civil War; role of Lincoln; significant military battles/campaigns 

  • Factors affecting the outcome of the Civil War; the role of foreign relations; the Emancipation Proclamation (1863) and participation of African Americans in the Civil War 

  • Reconstruction: presidential and congressional plans;  methods  of southern  resistance;  economic, social and political successes and failures

Add Civil Rights

Civil rights and social movements in the Americas post‑1945 

This section examines the origins, nature, challenges and achievements of civil rights and social movements after 1945. Causes of some of these movements may be pre-1945. These movements represented the attempts to achieve equality for groups that were not recognized or accepted as full members of society, and they challenged established authority and attitudes. 

  • Indigenous peoples and civil rights in the Americas
  • African Americans and the civil rights movement: origins, tactics and organizations; the US Supreme Court and legal challenges to segregation in education; ending of segregation in the south (1955–1980)
  • Role of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr in the civil rights movement; the rise of radical African American activism (1965–1968): Black Panthers; Black Power and Malcolm X; role of governments in civil rights movements in the Americas
  • Feminist movements in the Americas; reasons for emergence; impact and significance
  • Hispanic American movement in the United States; Cesar Chavez; immigration reform
  • Youth culture and protests of the 1960s and 1970s: characteristics and manifestation of a counterculture

Japanese expansion in East Asia (1931–1941)

Japanese expansion in East Asia (1931–1941)

Causes of expansion 

  • The impact of Japanese nationalism and militarism on foreign policy
  • Japanese domestic issues: political and economic issues, and their impact on foreign relations
  • Political instability in China


  • Japanese invasion of Manchuria and northern China (1931)
  • Sino-Japanese War (1937–1941)
  • The Three Power/Tripartite Pact; the outbreak of war; Pearl Harbor (1941)


  • League of Nations and the Lytton report
  • Political developments within
  • China—the Second United Front
  • International response, including
  • US initiatives and increasing tensions between the US and Japan

German and Italian expansion (1933–1940)

German and Italian expansion (1933–1940)

Causes of expansion

  • Impact of fascism and Nazism on the foreign policies of Italy and Germany
  • Impact of domestic economic issues on the foreign policies of Italy and Germany
  • Changing diplomatic alignments in Europe; the end of collective security; appeasement


  • German challenges to the post-war settlements (1933–1938) 
  • Italian expansion: Abyssinia (1935–1936); Albania; entry into the Second World War
  • German expansion (1938–1939); Pact of Steel, Nazi–Soviet Pact and the outbreak of war


  • International response to German aggression (1933–1938)
  • International response to Italian aggression (1935–1936)
  • International response to German and Italian aggression (1940)