CCOT Essay Examples & Tips


Continuity and Change Over Time Essay Question

Remember you need the following:

Three facts related to changes

Three facts related to continuities

Aim for eight total facts/evidence to get the two points.

Write one paragraph on situation at the beginning of the time period

Then address major changes

Concluding paragraph could describe the situation at the end of the time period and any continuities.

Thesis Statement

“There are many changes and continuities” is a TERRIBLE way to start an essay and will get you 10 points off if you use that in a thesis!

“Some things changed economically while politically they stayed the same.” – AWFUL – too vague!

The thesis must be correct! - Incorrect changes or continuities will make your thesis invalid.

Global Context or World Historical Context has to effectively explain change or continuity. You must explain how events in one area relate to the big picture; that is, you need to discuss the global context of a change or continuity. It must show connections to global processes such as:

Show connections to global processes!

Show interactions among regions!

Example - Shows interactions among regions:

After WWII, the Soviet Union forced Eastern European countries to adopt communist social structures.

Example – Show connections to global processes:

Soviet roles in the former Soviet Union changed dramatically during the early 1990s as part of a worldwide movement away from communism.

Think Big – CCOT is designed to focus on large global issues such as trade, technology, culture, social systems and migrations.

Example: Trans-Saharan trade or Indian Ocean Basin trade

Prompt: Analyze continuities and changes in trade networks between Africa and Eurasia from circa 300

C.E. to 1450 C.E.

Thesis Example: Between 300 C.E. and 1450 C.E., Africa became increasingly interconnected with

Eurasia. In 300, trade routes were mostly between Europe and North Africa, and they expanded

southward and westward until by 1450, they also encompassed sub-Saharan Africa, West Africa, and the

Indian Ocean. However, one thing stayed the same, the northern African coast was always involved in trade.

Prompt: Analyze continuities and changes in the beliefs and practices of ONE of the religions listed below from its beginnings to 1450:




Thesis: Theravada Buddhism developed originally as a philosophy in the 6 th century B.C.E. as a path to enlightenment however as it spread down the Silk Roads, Buddhism evolved into more of a religion focusing on the Buddha as a god in the Mahayana form. Despite this major change in belief, Buddhists continued to practice the doctrine of the Four Noble Truths and Eightfold Path in both sects of


Analysis of the Change: - Remember analysis works best in the body paragraphs – not in a paragraph by itself!

Because early Buddhism made heavy demands on individuals seeking to escape from the cycle of incarnation, many felt they were unable to make such sacrifices so three new developments were made in Buddhism that reduced the obligations of believers and opened new avenues to salvation to a much wider audience.

Global connection:

As Buddhism continues to spread along the Silk Routes it goes through further processes of syncretism in accommodating the cultures of the people who adopt it. After the fall of the Han Dynasty, Confucian tradition suffered a loss of credibility in China. Some thought Buddhism was inferior because of its foreign origins so Buddhist missionaries tailored their message to Chinese audiences explaining Buddhist concepts in vocabulary borrowed from Chinese culture. The result was a syncretic faith, Chan