The Evolution of 
War & Medicine


A WebQuest for 11th Grade U.S. History

Designed by

Mai Lee Moua, John Ballard, Jonathan Taylor, Alice Steindler

Introduction | Task | Process | Evaluation | Conclusion | Credits | Teacher Page


Throughout the history of our country we have fought wars to gain independence, settle national conflicts, and oppress tyranny.  The  political and economic gains achieved during these conflicts however, have come at a cost.  This cost is evident in the mass causualties and deaths inflicted by the instruments of war.  During these wars, medical knowledge has trailed military advancement.  Fortunately throughout war history, from The American Revolution to World War II, there have been vital gains in medical knowledge and equipment.  These gains have effectively saved the lives of many soldiers and civilians.  The purpose of this webquest is to offer insightful information of the development of war medicine. 

The Task

Scenario: You are traveling home from school one afternoon and you encounter a time machine.  There are 3 soldiers within the time machine, one from the American Revolution, one from the Civil War, and one from World War II.  They have been in search of 3 doctors to care for the injured soldiers from each time period.  Each soldier describes a shortage of doctors and explains how due to this shortage, many soldiers have lost their lives from lack of medical attention.  Your task as students is form a small group of 3.  Each individual within the group is to decide which time period they would like to visit with the time machine and assist in the medical attention of the wounded soldiers.  All medical doctors, during these time periods, had the knowledge needed to assist the wounds of the injured soldiers.  Therefore, you need to use the websites provided to gain the necessary knowldege needed to treat the wounds and diseases  you may encounter from the wounded soldiers.

The Process
  1. Split up into groups of three.
  2. Within the group, decide who will be traveling to the different time period.
  3. After chosing your time period, decide what illness or wound the soldier you have found is suffering from.
  4. Carefully research the information provided by the following websites pertaining to the time period  you wish to travel back in time to.  Using the webquest along with the links provided, decide what methods, instruments and tools will be needed to assist in the treatment of the injured soldier you have encountered. 
          Civil War:
          World War II:
          American Revolution:                                     
  1. As you are researching your project, individually, keep research notes detailing the information utilized from the website pertaining to your scenario. 
  2. Pick the method you think will be the best in treating the wounded soldier and write a one page summary describing the scenario and the method that will be implemented.
  3. Return to your groups of 3 and share your findings with each other.  Compare and contrast the different methods each of you used in your treatment of your wounded soldier.  Determine how medicine has evolved between each of the 3 wars and discuss it within your group. 
  4. Finally, as a group write a summary comparing each individual scenario citing specific similarities and differences relative to the three separate time periods. 



Total points:100 
A total of 100 possibe points can be earned for this project.

Individual Summary: 25
In order to get the full 25 points your summary will need a detail description of the scenario you encounter including time period, wound treated, method of treatment, intruments used, and the results of the treatment. Grammar will count!!

Group Participation: 25
You will be required to offer insightful contributions to your group's discussion of the various scenarios.  Each group member will be ask to give an evaluation of fellow group members.  These evaluation will be part of the 25 points along with my own observation of your participation.

Group Summary: 25
Your summary should be a collaborative group effort. The summary should include a brief description of each scenario.  Your descriptions should demostrate your knowledge and understanding of war and medicine and how they have evolved over time together.

Research Notes on Sites: 25
Your notes should provide evidence of your website research.  In other words, you should cite information obtain from the web sites that you will use in your scenario. 


After completing the task offered by this webquest, students will have gained information relative to the advancement of medical science throughout three historical periods.  This knowledge will have been obtained by researching improvements made in this field from the American Revolution through WWII. 

Credits & References


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Last updated on August 15, 1999. Based on a template from The WebQuest Page