Superintendent’s Memo #221-13

State seal, Commonwealth of Virginia

Department of Education

August 23, 2013

TO:  Division Superintendents

FROM:  Patricia I. Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT:  World Geography Connects 1500 A.D. to the Present An Interactive Online Geography Course Beginning October 21, 2013

World Geography Connects 1500 A.D. to the Present, an interactive online course for Virginia teachers, will be taught this fall.  This course supports the Standards of Learning for teaching World History and Geography: 1500 A.D. to the Present.  The course is free for Virginia teachers who wish to earn up to 45 license renewal points, or it may be taken for three graduate credits through Old Dominion University.

The course will be offered on the Internet at
Registration may be completed online at this Web site.  Teachers may register from Monday, September 2, 2013 through Friday, October 4, 2013, and the course starts October 21, 2013.  The course ends December 2, 2013.

The goals of the course are as follows:

The course consists of five components, each of which is expected to take approximately three hours.  Each component includes learning and practice activities, letters from the instructor, resource links, a discussion board, and quizzes.  Teachers will find many ideas, resources, and links that will assist them in the classroom.  The course includes the following five topics:

Dr. Don Zeigler, a professor of geography at Old Dominion University since 1980, will teach the course.  He works regularly with Virginia teachers to improve their instruction to meet the Standards of Learning.  Please contact him at or at (757) 368-4113 for information about earning graduate credit.  Although the course content is the same for everyone, teachers enrolled in World Geography Connects 1500 A.D. to the Present for credit will be required to complete a lesson or unit plan.

For more information, please contact Betsy Barton, history and social science specialist, Office of Humanities and Early Childhood, by e-mail at or by telephone at (804) 225-3454.