Module 5 Lab – Religions and Timelines

Learning Goals and Grading Criteria:

  1. Accurately sequence 6 historical events, ideas, people, or objects in a structured timeline spreadsheet.
  2. Appropriately cite at least 3 separate articles from our weekly readings in the Chicago Manual of Style format in the timeline spreadsheet.
  3. Write one paragraph explaining the theme or idea connecting the 6 historical events, ideas, people, or objects in your timeline.


This Lab will focus on 2 fundamental skills that historians must be able to do: sequence information (a then b then c) and cite where we found our information.

Sequencing information (artifact metadata, events, etc.) within a chronology is an important skill, because it helps one understand how things sit in relation to one another. Thanks to the internet, we can lookup dates (or approximate dates) and critically evaluate sources to understand the credibility of the dates. But putting artifacts and events in sequence can help surface change and continuity over time: what trends, events, and ideas occur is shaped by the historical period, or when they happen. 

We cite others’ work for 2 main reasons. The first is to give appropriate honest credit to those whose work and ideas we include in our own scholarship. Academia has a long way to go when it comes to equitable recognition and citation practices, but we will do our part by being open and thorough about citing others’ ideas and work in this assignment and throughout the semester! The second reason to cite is that it’s how we can enter the “scholarly conversation” with respect and surety. Citing research is one way to demonstrate your own credibility — to avoid being that person who is just being loud in the comment section on the internet. 


  1. Make a copy of the Timeline Template spreadsheet for yourself to work on. Important Note: Don’t change the column headers, don’t remove any columns, and don’t leave any blank rows in your spreadsheet!  
  2. Pay close attention to the columns that are required: A (year), J (headline), K (description), M (media caption). See the template spreadsheet for what to enter in each column. Start entering your timeline info in Row 3.  
  3. From this week’s readings on the development of religious beliefs around the ancient world, choose 6 specific events, people, ideas, or artifacts to create your own timeline of key points in religious development in the ancient world. There are many more than 6 key points across all the assigned readings! You will carefully select 6 specific events, people, ideas, or artifacts and sequencing them in order from oldest to most recent. 
  4. Explore the Ancient and Medieval History Database primary sources. Choose 2 primary sources that are most relevant to your 6 points. Use the Citation feature at the top of the primary source page (just below the source’s title) to get the full-citation in Chicago Manual of Style format.
  5. Write-up: write a short paragraph explaining your 6 key points and 2 primary source selections: what threads them together and what is important about these 6 points in history together. Include the full citation in Chicago Manual of Style format of the 2 primary sources at the end of your write-up. 

Turn In to D2L – due 9/27, 11pm:

  1. Your timeline spreadsheet with 6 complete entries in .CSV or .XLSX or .ODS or Google Sheets formats. Only these formats will be accepted — you will not receive points for this part of the assignment if you turn in the spreadsheet in a different file format. If you have questions about how to make sure you save/export the file the correct way, please ask!
  2. Write-up (explanation paragraph and primary source citations) as a Word doc, PDF, Google Doc, or LibreOffice file.