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Social Studies courses are divided into four main areas that include courses designed to meet the needs of students with various backgrounds and abilities.  In each of these courses certain skills will be stressed, including critical thinking, interpretation of charts, graphs, pictures, maps, cartoons, and statistics relating the past to the present, note taking and outlining, reading comprehension, vocabulary development, understanding cause and effect, and written and oral expressions of ideas.  Current technology will also be used to supplement the learning process highlighting the importance of research.

Global Studies 101/102

Prerequisite: Recommendation from Guidance Department

This course examines world events from the year 1600 to the present.  It explores the impact of the democratic and industrial revolutions, the forces that led to world domination by European powers, the wars that changed empires, the ideas that led to independence movements, and the effects of global interdependence.  The concepts of historical thinking introduced in earlier grades continue to build with students locating and analyzing primary and secondary sources from multiple perspectives to draw conclusions.

U.S. History 101/102

Prerequisite: Global Studies

The first semester will be a study of America’s colonial beginnings, its development as a nation, and the economic and social conflict leading to and following the Civil War.  The effect of the western expansion and industrialization on the American identity will also be studied.  The second semester will trace the emergence of the United States as a world power through early 20th century expansion overseas, World War I, and World War II.  The decade of prosperity in the 1920s will be contrasted with the decade of poverty and despair of the 1930s.  Students will focus on the ever-changing role of the U.S. in international affairs since World War II.  They will also explore the changes in a society affected by a knowledge explosion in science, technology, transportation, and communication.  Topics of interest in foreign affairs include the Cold War, the Korean and Vietnam conflicts, the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Camp David Accords, and the hostage crisis in Iran.  Domestic developments to be studied include Watergate, the space and arms race, the civil rights movement, and the energy crisis.

Government

Prerequisite: Global Studies and U.S. History

This course will help prepare the student for the social, economic, and political pressures of the modern age by examining the role of the individual in local, state, and national government.  The general structure and function of government will be studied, as well as the place of political parties, lobbies, and pressure groups in the American political system.  Personal involvement will be encouraged, as the need to stay informed, to vote, and to require accountability of public officials are stressed.

Honors Track

These courses stress the basic skills of critical thinking, methods of analysis and evaluation, and clear and concise written and oral expression.  Readings may be required in preparation for these courses.  Students will be recommended for the Honors and Advanced Placement courses based on the following criteria:

  • Recommendation by Social Studies Department and/or counselor
  • A minimum grade point average of 2.5 in Social Studies courses
  • High School Placement Test scores
  • Interest and acceptance of the program

Honors Global Studies 101/102

Prerequisite: Recommendation from Guidance Department

This course involves a more in-depth study of world events from the year 1600 to the present.  It explores the impact of the democratic and industrial revolutions, the forces that led to world domination by European powers, the wars that changed empires, the ideas that led to independence movements, and the effects of global interdependence.  The concepts of historical thinking introduced in earlier grades continue to build with students locating and analyzing primary and secondary sources from multiple perspectives to draw conclusions.

Honors U.S. History 101/102

Prerequisite: Unweighted 2.5 in Honors Global Studies or teacher recommendation

The first semester will provide an in-depth study of the growth and development of the United States from the years leading up to the Revolutionary War period to the 20th century.  Emphasis is placed on major trends and significant developments, as well as on contributions of persons who have shaped our country.  The class will include audio-visual presentations, reading and interpreting of primary sources, and class discussions.  The second semester will focus on the forces that helped shape our country.  Industrial and political development, formation and change of foreign policy, and men and women who contributed to the philosophy and enrichment of democracy are overall areas of concentration.  Special emphasis will be put on the relationship of historical events to modern day problems and trends.  The Cold War, the turbulence of the late 1950s and 1960s in regard to Civil Rights, the Vietnam War and its impact on America, and the Presidential administrations of Nixon, Ford, Carter, and Reagan will be studied.  The student will be challenged through the use of primary sources, research material, class discussion, supplemental reading, report writing, and the analysis and evaluation of historical events.

Honors Government

Prerequisite: Unweighted 2.5 in Honors U.S. History or teacher recommendation

This course involves an in-depth study of the structure and function of the federal, state, and local governments.  Political parties and the role of the individual in American democracy will be studied.  Examination of current political issues will also be a part of this course.  Class discussion and involvement in the democratic process will be stressed.

Advanced Placement Courses

Advanced Placement Human Geography 101/102

Prerequisite: (Freshmen) Recommendation from Guidance Department; (Sophomore and juniors) Teacher recommendation

This course introduces students to the systematic study of patterns and processes that have shaped human understanding, use, and alteration of Earth’s surface.  Students employ spatial concepts and landscape analysis to examine socioeconomic organization and its environmental consequences.  They also learn about the methods and tools geographers use in their research and applications.

Advanced Placement U.S. History 101/102

Prerequisite: Teacher recommendation

The first semester will provide an in-depth study of United States history from colonial times through Jacksonian democracy.  The second semester course will provide an in-depth study of U.S. history from Jacksonian democracy to present.  Extensive reading of primary and secondary sources, research projects, and the writing of analytical essays are essential elements of the course.

Advanced Placement Government 101/102

Prerequisite: Teacher recommendation

The first semester course will provide extensive study of the United States Constitution, the federal system, and state and local governments.  Political parties, interest groups, elections, and voter behavior will also be studied.  Outside reading, writing of essays, research reports, and discussion are essential elements of this course.  The second semester course will provide an extensive study of the U.S. Congress, Presidency, and Judiciary.  Additional topics will include bureaucracy, civil liberties, and U.S. foreign policy.

Advanced Placement Macroeconomics

Prerequisite: Honors Algebra II/Trigonometry and teacher recommendation.  This course will satisfy the graduation requirement for earning 1⁄2 credit in Financial Literacy.

This course will focus on macroeconomic concepts and the analytical skills necessary to understand how the economy operates and the consequences of various approaches to solving complex economic problems.  Fundamental topics such as the world economy, unemployment, inflation, economic growth, comparative advantage, productivity, aggregate supply and demand, national income, monetary and fiscal policy, banking, scarcity, and opportunity costs will be introduced.

Advanced Placement Psychology

Prerequisite: Teacher recommendation

The purpose of the Advanced Placement course in Psychology is to introduce the systematic and scientific study of the behavior and mental processes of human beings and other animals.  Included is a consideration of the psychological facts, principles, and phenomena associated with each of the major subfields within psychology.  Students also learn about the ethics and methods psychologists use in their science and practice.

Electives

Current Events

Through the use of a weekly news magazine, this course will focus on current events taking place in the world.  Students will gain insights into the many diverse issues facing our modern world.

Modern History through Film

Students will be able to analyze historical and cultural aspects of society through the eyes of particular media.  Students will spend the first quarter analyzing particular sources that describe events in history, going from the Civil War through modern times.  Students will then spend the second quarter analyzing how the media reflects/influences the culture of the time period.  As a final project/exam, students will present to the class on a particular topic that they will research and analyze themselves.

Introduction to Psychology

This course involves the study of human behavior.  Topics in this class include the development of psychological theories, biological effects on behavior, theories of personality, development over the life span, behavior in social and cultural context, and psychological disorders and approaches to treatment.  The class seeks to develop the student’s curiosity about human behavior.

Introduction to Sociology

Sociology is the study of human society and social interaction.  This course will focus on theories of sociological behavior, components of culture, structure and types of groups in society, and problems society faces.  Poverty, discrimination, the elderly, juvenile delinquency, the criminal justice system, drug abuse, and alcoholism will be studied.

Introduction to Economics

Prerequisite: Completion of or enrolled in Algebra II/Trigonometry; This course will satisfy the graduation requirement for earning 1⁄2 credit in Financial Literacy.

This course is designed to introduce the student to the national economic system.  An overall view of the principles and problems of our American economy will be examined, along with the role of the federal government and the Federal Reserve.  The application of math skills will be used to understand and solve problems dealing with supply and demand, interest rates, dividends, taxes, budgets, and the buying and selling of stocks and bonds.

Department Faculty

Mr. Andy Seyfang, Chair

M.S. Educational Leadership, Miami University

Mr. Cody Byrd

M.S. Education, Wright State University

Mr. Mike Kelly

M.A. American History, Villanova University

Mrs. Jill Kilby

M.S. Educational Leadership, University of Dayton

Mr. Erik Ramsey '93

M.S. Education, Antioch University

Mr. Chris Sorrell '83

M.S. Education, Antioch University