THE DBQ: Document

THE DBQ: DocumentBased Question
Objective: To understand the process
of how to write a DBQ
Step 1: Read Historical Context
and Task
• Read the Historical Context- this provides
you with insight to the historical
setting and time period.
• Example: Imperialism
Historical Context:
• Imperialism has been interpreted from a
variety of viewpoints. The documents below
express various viewpoints about the positive
and negative effects of European imperialism.
• Evaluate both the positive and negative effects
of imperialism
Step 2- Examine the Documents
• FIRST- Consider the Source of the
• Status, Time Period, Bias, Point of View
• For Example- is the source from the
African peoples’ vs. the colonizers POV
• Is the source Bias? (someone who leans
a certain way)
• Was it before a certain time period,
major turning point in history?
Step 3- Group the Documents
• Positive Negative, by time period,
by social status, etc
• Think of the Documents as a
puzzle you have to piece together
• make a chart
Positive Effects
Negative Effects
Doc. 1
Doc. 2
Doc. 4
Doc. 3
Doc. 5
Doc. 6
Step 4- Decide What
Documents to Use
• Rule of Thumb:
• Use one more than
half the documents in
your essay
• If you are given 6
documents, you have
to use_______?
• You can use all or
more than the more
than half if you want
Step 5- Write the Essay using
the Documents as Supporting
• Follow same essay
• Intro- General
statement, transition,
and Thesis (Although
• Organize your body
paragraphs based on
thematic ideas
discussed in the
documents that
answer the task
• Be Sure to: use the
documents and
include OUTSIDE
• Cite your Document
after you use it
(Doc. 1).
• Or refer to __________
(author) of Document
1 states…
Point will be taken off if…
• In a formal essay, use personal
pronouns- I, me, you, your, we, etc.
1 point every time
• No thesis/ Although statement – 1
point off
• Illegible = 0
• Failure to indent
• Misinterprets documents
Your Question:
• Historical Context:
• The African continent has been shaped by various people, trade routes,
and civilizations throughout world history. The early civilizations of North
Africa reveal that there were advanced societies in Africa before
European colonization, Also, the various sub-Saharan West African
trading kingdoms are evidence of these advanced societies. Africa also
had its own beliefs in terms of religions and traditions. Traditional beliefs
along with the influence of Christianity and Islam helped shape the
region we call Africa today. Along with the Europeans in Africa came
slavery, brutality and exploitation of resources and humans. The effects
of European rule would forever change the face of the African continent.
• Task:
• In a well-written essay, using the documents, answer the encompassing
• How has Africa changed over time throughout world history?

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