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Welcome to History 1503

Course Description

By the end of this course, students should have a nuanced vision of the politics, society and culture of the modern Middle East.  The course will be chronological in approach and begin at the end of the 18th century and conclude with the contemporary Middle East and North Africa (MENA).  Major themes that will be addressed in this course are: colonialism, empire, gender, class, religion, sectarianism and contemporary revolution.

Guidance for Covid/ Bereavement

“Death in the immediate family includes the following persons: spouse, domestic partner, natural, foster or step parent, child, grandchild, brother or sister, father-in-law, mother-in-law, or any relative residing in the employee’s immediate household. Proof of death is required. Proof of residency is required for relative living in household. You are granted four days for bereavement.” (City Tech Staff handbook, 2019,

Four days of bereavement is defined as an extension of all submitted work: exams, projects, labs and any submitted work that is graded and calculated into a final grade. While professors should be able to offer more time, the guidance is to offer the minimum. No student suffering a loss of a family member should be required to submit work, attend class or present during the bereavement period. Professors should provide the reasonable accommodation of at least four days to those students who are coping with the intensely emotional loss of a family member.


Here is a quick guide to the course


 Instructions on how to complete assignments


The rules of cheating and plagiarism

Grading criteria/ Course rules are below

Grade Breakdown


Plagiarism exam 5%

Weekly discussion board 15%

Essay Exam 1 15%

Essay Exam 2 15%

Essay Exam 3 15%

Topic paper 5%

Debate paper 15%

Film paper 15%

Grade Breakdown

93-100 A (exceptional)
92-90 A- (superior)
87-89 B+ (very good)
83-86 B (good)
80-82 B- (above average)
77-79 C+ (slightly above average)
70-76 C (average)
60-69 D (poor)
Below 59 F (fail)

Please note that there are no plus or minus grades below C so be mindful that if you fall below 70 there is no cushion. Keep on top of your grades and come see me during office hours if you feel like you are lagging behind.

Also note that missing one or more assignments nearly guarantees that you will not get a score above a D.  If you cannot do an assignment or attend a test, you must inform the professor in advance and ask for an extension. THERE IS NO LATE WORK.

Course and Classroom Policies

In order to provide an atmosphere of mutual respect that fostered intellectual cooperation and free thinking the following criteria for the classroom are not negotiable.  These policies are based on my experience as a professor and do not necessarily reflect you as individuals or students.

  1. You must use your Citytech email address and have access to Blackboard.
  2. You must have an OpenLab account.
  3. All assignments will go through an originality check and offer students a score. It picks up quoted text and questions, but neither are considered for plagiarism and cheating. Only original work submitted by student will be considered. Work generated by AI is strictly prohibited. All forms of cheating are prohibited.
  4. If you have taken this class before you may not resubmit work- it will result in an F.
  5. You must complete the plagiarism test before you submit any work and submit your score via blackboard
  6. All students and the professor recognize that this class is a learning environment. Students may read perspectives that you may not agree with, may find offensive and may wholeheartedly believe are wrong. However, it is a college level class and being confronted with ideas that upset our worldview is a healthy and necessary process in a globalized world.
  7. I respond to emails between 9-5pm M-F- If you send me an email late at night or over the weekend, it will take me longer to get back to you then when I am at school during the week.
  8. All reading and writing assignments are mandatory and must be turned in by 11:59 pm on the date that they are due.
  9.  I give extensions, but there are NO late papers.
  10. Plagiarism of any kind will result in an F in the course. Cheating also results in an F in the course.
  11. If you stop completing assignments then you will receive a WU, if you have poor attendance that results in missed assignments then you will receive an F.
  12. I give lots of feedback- It is meant to help you improve for your next assignment.  It is never meant to hurt or insult you.
  13. If you have a question about an assignment, grades or anything related to this course, please refer to this syllabus first. Most answers can be found here.
  14. This syllabus will serve as a contract between student and instructor and if at any time there is any question with regard to the policies of the classroom, this syllabus will serve as the foundation.
  15. The syllabus is the law regarding grades, policies and assignment deadlines.
  16. Paraphrased ideas from your assignments must be cited.  if you read something from the internet/ sources assigned and then change or manipulate it to represent it as your own idea- this is plagiarism and will result in an F in this course. Cite all Work.
  17. Please review rules on cheating and plagiarism
    • You will be expected to submit plagiarism free assignments from DAY 1. Remember ANY ideas that do not emerge from your head, must be cited. Even readings for this class for your daily assignments. Please cite all work with quotations that are direct quotations and also all paraphrased citations.

If you have any questions about citations, please come and see me. Below you will find the NYCCT academic integrity statement:

Academic Integrity at City Tech

Students and all others who work with information, ideas, texts, images, music, inventions, and other intellectual property owe their audience and sources accuracy and honesty in using, crediting, and citing sources. As a community of intellectual and professional workers, the
College recognizes its responsibility for providing instruction in information literacy and academic integrity, offering models of good practice, and responding vigilantly and appropriately to infractions of academic integrity. Accordingly, academic dishonesty is prohibited in The City University of New York and at New York City College of
Technology and is punishable by penalties, including failing grades, suspension, and expulsion.  The complete text of the College policy on Academic Integrity may be found in the catalog.
— NYCCT statement on academic integrity