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Big History Project: 13.8 Billion Years of History

Teach a mind-blowing history course that captures students’ natural curiosity about our world. The Big History Project course is standards-aligned, adaptable to different learning environments, and has a proven impact.

Lifelong learner looking for the Big History Public site?

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Ideal for grades


Course length (months)


Course materials
  • Activities 284
  • Articles 164
  • Videos 154
  • Closer 41
  • Opener 35
  • Assignments 40

Why Teach Big History Project?

We’re different. Big History students demonstrate growth in reasoning, mechanics, use of evidence, and use of disciplinary content. Other qualities set us apart:

  • Contemporary content: Standards-based content offers diverse viewpoints and flexes to support different goals, environments, and learners.

  • Aligned and adaptable: Meet social studies requirements while retaining the flexibility to address local infrastructure and individual learning needs.

  • Context and connections: We connect the past, present, and future while preparing students to be great thinkers and problem-solvers.

  • Distinct and diverse: We go to great lengths to gather, incorporate, and learn from multiple voices and perspectives.

  • Foundational focus: An approach that establishes a foundation in historical thinking practices with clear expectations, regular feedback, and plenty of practice.

  • Proven impact: Big History Project students demonstrate clear gains in reading, writing, and content knowledge.

  • Invested in teachers: We are a community that supports, inspires, and evolves together.

Testimonials from Our Teaching Community

Big History Project allows students to ask the questions that matter. These are big questions that seem impossible to teach in one year; however, this course breaks the history of the entire Universe into eight manageable thresholds. This course uses a multidisciplinary approach to teaching the class, creating a place of curiosity in my classroom where questions about things not known are acceptable.
Pierre, history teacher, Grand Rapids, MI

Testimonials from Our Teaching Community

Recent changes to the state Regents Exam provided an opportunity to replace our curriculum with something more interesting and engaging. Big History Project is just that and it also prepares kids for the assessment. The interdisciplinary focus on critical thinking, reading, and writing helps students be successful in many of their courses—and reaches those who are otherwise not interested in history.
Phil, history teacher, Spencerport, NY

Testimonials from Our Teaching Community

Before I found Big History Project, I felt like I was taking students on a multi-stop tour of the ancient world but without threads or concepts to connect the stops together. Big History tells a cohesive story of our Universe while teaching the crucial skills of critical thinking, academic writing, and deep reading. My students engage with rigorous content and have a lot of fun doing so!
Kathleen, gifted and talented history and ELA teacher, Reno, NV

Professional Development

In our Teaching Big History online professional development course, fellow BHP teachers and historians guide you through organization, planning, pacing, and skills development—it’s online, self-paced, and free.

Our OER Project Online Teacher Community is a vibrant online space where teachers and scholars can share ideas on the latest teaching trends, ask questions, and gain access to a variety of professional development opportunities.

Upcoming Events

Past Events

Take a Closer Look

Preview a selection of essential course materials and resources to help you decide if this free online social studies curriculum is a good fit for your teaching needs.


Looking for a course that starts at the Columbian Exchange or the Industrial Revolution?

View our wide range of courses here.