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Jesus, Genghis Khan, and Joan of Arc Could Be Cut From AP World History Classes

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Some educators are up in arms over a recent proposal by the College Board to begin the AP World History exam’s scope in 1450 instead of the dawn of civilization. In justifying the move, the College Board cited the daunting amount of material that the course previously covered, beginning with early humans’ migration from Africa during the Paleolithic period.

Should the new curriculum go into effect, it may require an amendment to a storied elementary school mnemonic: “In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue—42 years after the dawn of history.” (Christopher Columbus was born in 1451, just making the cut for the new exam.)

To capture how much of history would go untested after such a change, TIME compiled a list of the 200 most influential individuals in documented history. Our group is based on top-100 lists from TIME’s previous rankings, a highly cited roster by the astrophysicist Michael H. Hart, and the MIT Pantheon project. Based on dates of birth gathered from WikiData, we found that 40% of the most influential people in history were born before the new AP World History cutoff.

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Faithfully Magazine is a fresh, bold and exciting news and culture publication that covers issues, conversations and events impacting Christian communities of color.


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