This resource is aligned with the Australian Curriculum: Modern History for Senior Secondary students, with specific reference to content descriptions for Unit 1: Understanding the Modern World, and specifically those that fall under the topic elective ‘The Enlightenment (1750–1789)’. The resource meets cross-curriculum priorities and promotes the use of historical skills such as analysis and use of sources, perspective and interpretations, and explanation and communication.

  • The main factors contributing to the emergence of the Enlightenment, including: the decline in the power of both the Church and Absolute Monarchy; the Scientific Revolution; and the spread of Enlightenment ideas across Europe (ACHMH016)
     
  • The motivation and role of individuals in the development of the Enlightenment, and conflicting ideas, with particular reference to Locke, Voltaire, Mill and Rousseau (ACHMH017)
     
  • The key ideas that emerged from the Enlightenment, including: the belief in reason and opposition to superstition; the belief in the importance of free expression; the belief in the value of learning and education as reflected in the rise of universities and academies; and support for humanitarianism (ACHMH018)
     
  • The significant changes that occurred as a result of the Enlightenment, for example: movements for social and political reform; the rise of enlightened monarchies; increased interest in technological change; and belief in equal rights (ACHMH019)
     
  • The experiences and responses to the Enlightenment—for example, those of scientists, intellectuals, monarchs, church leaders and revolutionary leaders (ACHMH020)
     
  • The significance and impact of the Enlightenment beyond Europe in the 19th century (ACHMH021)
     
  • The main causes of the American Revolution, including the significance of the Seven Years War (1756–1763), the influence of republican ideology, the imposition of taxes and repressive acts, and the lack of American representation in British government; and the campaigns that were fought to achieve independence (for example, Saratoga and Philadelphia) (ACHMH022)
     
  • The key ideas of liberalism, democracy and republicanism that emerged from the American Revolution as illustrated by the 1776 Declaration of Independence; the creation of a national constitution and Bill of Rights; and the establishment of constitutional government (ACHMH024)
     
  • The significant political, social and constitutional changes brought about by the American Revolution—for example: the separation of powers; treatment of the opponents of the new republic; losses during the war; and the emergence of the Federal system (ACHMH026)
     
  • The significance of the American Revolution into the 19th century: for example its impact on other revolutionary movements; and the implications for Australia of the cessation of British convict transportation to the United States (ACHMH027)