Social Studies

Standards, Assessments and Graduation Requirements
Minnesota’s 2004 social studies standards, revised in 2011, were adopted into rule on May 6, 2013, with an effective date of May 13, 2013. View the social studies rulemaking page. The 2011 Minnesota K-12 Academic Standards in Social Studies was to be implemented in all schools by the 2013-2014 school year.

The next review of the social studies standards will be during the 2020-2021 school year. In addition to the state social studies standards, there are standards for Literacy in History/Social Studies included in the 2010 Minnesota K-12 Academic Standards in English Language Arts.

There is no state test for social studies; school districts create their own assessments to measure student progress on the social studies standards. Graduation requirements for social studies state that all students are required to satisfactorily complete three and one-half (3.5) credits of social studies, including U.S. history, geography, government and citizenship, world history and economics sufficient to satisfy all of the academic standards in social studies. Read more on the graduation requirements page.

 

Minnesota Social Studies Standards 

 

 

 

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

Human Geography is a two-term course that introduces students to the thematic study of the world’s people and issues from a global perspective. Students will employ geospatial skills to compare and contrast places and regions and examine human systems and their relationships to the environment. Coursework will focus on themes such as population, culture, geopolitics, economic development, urbanization and natural resources. In addition, classroom discussions will also include a continuing study of global and local current events.

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

Examine the human experience on Earth at both the macro and microgeographic levels in this rigorous, college-level course. Evaluate the impact humans have on the landscape—both physically and culturally. Use a spatial approach to interpret human impact, focusing on the interaction between various groups of people, between human and environment, and the consequences and contributions of humans on Earth. Topics include location, population, migration, culture, language, religion, ethnicity, political geography, economic development, industry agriculture and urban geography. We will prepare for the AP Human Geography exam giving in May by College Board.

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

Develop knowledge of and an appreciation for the contributions of many cultures to the collective wisdom of the human race. We emphasize the ideas and events of both Western and non-Western civilizations as they have come to shape our present existence.

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

Take a more rigorous approach to world history using historical reference materials to provide differing points of view in relation to Western and non-Western civilizations. We will work to prepare for the AP World History exam and possibly earn college credit!

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

Review the highlights of American history, including the study of the Pre-Columbian events, the colonial period, the Revolution and events leading up to it, and the American Civil War and its the causes and reconstruction. Study western expansion, America’s industrial foundations, America’s involvement in World War I, the 1920s and the causes of the Great Depression. We cover World War II, the advent of the nuclear age, the Cold War and other events that lead our country to the world stage as a modern superpower. You will investigate recent social and economic trends that have shaped the society in which we live today and our nation’s role in the world’s search for stability and peace.

Available At: East Ridge High School

Review the highlights of American history, including the study of the Pre-Columbian events, the colonial period, the Revolution and events leading up to it, and the American Civil War and its the causes and reconstruction. Study western expansion, America’s industrial foundations, America’s involvement in World War I, the 1920s and the causes of the Great Depression. We cover World War II, the advent of the nuclear age, the Cold War and other events that lead our country to the world stage as a modern superpower. You will investigate recent social and economic trends that have shaped the society in which we live today and our nation’s role in the world’s search for stability and peace.

Available At: East Ridge High School Woodbury High School

Take a rigorous approach to American History with a faster pace and greater depth than the standard U.S. History course. We’ll emphasize critical thinking and analytical techniques using a college textbook, along with a variety of outside readings and primary sources. Learn through research papers, book reviews, essay tests, oral presentations, role playing and group discussion. We will prepare for AP U.S. History exam given by the College Board in the spring.

Available At: Park High School

The focus and purpose of the IB History of the Americas course is to examine the transformation of the Americas, from the initial European explorations into the Americas up to present day. An emphasis is placed on interpreting documents, mastering a significant body of factual information and writing critical essays. Throughout the course, particular attention is placed on developing themes, concerning political, economic, cultural and social institutions within each time period studied. Students will gain an awareness of how American history has helped to shape the Western Hemisphere and reinforces our role in the international community.

Available At: Park High School Woodbury High School

Gain fundamental knowledge about American government, the political process, citizenship, civics and problems of democracy. Take a realistic appraisal of government and politics and learn to how to critically analyze and add to our American political community in a constructive way.

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

Gain fundamental knowledge about American government, the political process, citizenship, civics and problems of democracy. Take a realistic appraisal of government and politics and learn to how to critically analyze and add to our American political community in a constructive way.

Available At: Park High School Woodbury High School

Obtain factual knowledge and analytical skills to understand and engage critically with the issues and structures within the U.S. government. This course offers a scope of study equivalent to that obtained in most introductory college U.S. Government and politics courses. *This two-trimester course fulfills the political science credit required to graduate.

Available At: Park High School

Obtain factual knowledge and analytical skills to understand and engage critically with the issues and structures within the U.S. government. This course offers a scope of study equivalent to that obtained in most introductory college U.S. Government and politics courses. *This two-trimester course fulfills the political science credit required to graduate.

Available At: East Ridge High School

This course is a college level introduction to politics and government in the United States, including constitutional origins and development, major institutions, parties, interest groups, elections, participation and public opinion. The ways of explaining politics and the nature of political science and recent trends will be explored. *This is a University of Minnesota 4 credit course.

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

Understanding the principles taught in this course will enable you to interpret the financial pages, perceive the consequences of debt and have a basic knowledge of the workings of the U.S. Economy. We highlight the components of basic economic macro and micro principles and outline micro-economic principles associated with individual businesses and households including trade-offs and scarcity. The macroeconomics concepts we’ll explore delve into the Federal Reserve System and issues associated with inflation, unemployment and a worldwide economy. *This class is taught in both Business and Social Studies and meets the grad requirement.

Available At: East Ridge High School Woodbury High School

Understanding the principles taught in this course will enable you to interpret the financial pages, perceive the consequences of debt and have a basic knowledge of the workings of the U.S. Economy. We highlight the components of basic economic macro and micro principles and outline micro-economic principles associated with individual businesses and households including trade-offs and scarcity. The macroeconomics concepts we’ll explore delve into the Federal Reserve System and issues associated with inflation, unemployment and a worldwide economy. *This class is taught in both Business and Social Studies and meets the grad requirement.

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

Thoroughly understand the principles of economics that apply to the functions of individual decision makers, both consumers and producers, within the economic system. We place primary emphasis on the natureand functions of product markets. Study factor markets and the role of government in promoting greater efficiency and equity in the economy. You may choose to take both AP Microeconomics and AP Macroeconomics.

Available At: Park High School

Thoroughly understand the principles of economics that apply to the functions of individual decision makers, both consumers and producers, within the economic system. We place primary emphasis on the natureand functions of product markets. Study factor markets and the role of government in promoting greater efficiency and equity in the economy. You may choose to take both AP Microeconomics and AP Macroeconomics.

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

The purpose of this course is to give students a thorough understanding of the principles of economics that apply to an economic system as a whole. We emphasize the national income and price-level determinations and become familiar with economic performance measures, the financial sector, stabilization policies, economic growth and international economics. You may take both AP Microeconomics and AP Macroeconomics.

Available At: Park High School

The purpose of this course is to give students a thorough understanding of the principles of economics that apply to an economic system as a whole. We emphasize the national income and price-level determinations and become familiar with economic performance measures, the financial sector, stabilization policies, economic growth and international economics. You may take both AP Microeconomics and AP Macroeconomics.

Available At: Park High School

20th Century World History explores four topics that have affected our contemporary world profoundly. These topics include: causes, practices and effects of wars; the Cold War; authoritarian and single party states; and conflict and intervention. This course will challenge students while providing them the opportunity to explore and make sense of both the great
diversity and interrelatedness of world history. Political, economic, religious, technological and social issues will be considered, as well as cultural elements and themes when relevant. *This course fulfills economics and government requirements.

Available At: Park High School

This course fully explores the main principles of macro economics with emphasis on how these principles apply across global economies. Study will include fundamental concepts of supply and demand through a detailed examination of international commodities and their role in the global marketplace. Concepts of currency exchange and valuations, money supply, gross domestic product, inflation, trade, unemployment, game theory and purchasing power parity will be among the many topics discussed. Various hands-on simulations will be used to explain abstract concepts during the course of study. This course will prove to be both challenging, enjoyable and applicable to current events around the globe.

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

Gain an overview of the problems of crime and our society’s social responses. Study the extent of the crime problem, the various forms of crime, types of criminals, theories of criminal behavior and efforts of crime control including police, courts and corrections.

Available At: Park High School Woodbury High School

Look at great military leaders and important battles and examine how they influenced history. Personalities influence history. Study historical periods through the actions of leaders like Alexander the Great, Hannibal, Julius Caesar, Richard the Lionhearted, Napoleon Bonaparte, Frederick the Great and others.

Available At: Woodbury High School

This course focuses on the study of human behavior, including the science of psychology, motivation and emotion, principles of learning, human development, stress and health psychology, and disorders and treatment. Many self-assessments for personal awareness are included. Although not intended exclusively for the college-bound, learning these basic principles in psychology will be useful in many post high school settings and occupations.

Available At: Woodbury High School

This course focuses on the study of human behavior, including the science of psychology, motivation and emotion, principles of learning, human development, stress and health psychology, and disorders and treatment. Many self-assessments for personal awareness are included. Although not intended exclusively for the college-bound, learning these basic principles in psychology will be useful in many post high school settings and occupations.

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

This course focuses on human behavior, including the biological basis for behavior, sensation and perception, state of consciousness, memory, cognition and language, intelligence and mental abilities, personality and social psychology. Many self-assessments for personal awareness are included. Although not intended exclusively for the college-bound, learning these basic principles in psychology will be useful in many post high school settings and occupations.

Available At: Woodbury High School

This course focuses on human behavior, including the biological basis for behavior, sensation and perception, state of consciousness, memory, cognition and language, intelligence and mental abilities, personality and social psychology. Many self-assessments for personal awareness are included. Although not intended exclusively for the college-bound, learning these basic principles in psychology will be useful in many post high school settings and occupations.

Available At: East Ridge High School Woodbury High School

College in the Schools Psychology 1001 A/B is an introduction to the scientific study of human behavior and prerequisite for all other Psychology courses at the college level. This course explores how something as complex as human behavior can be studied scientifically: biological, social and environmental influences on human behavior, predicable ways in which humans behave, reason, remember and feel and ways in which humans differ.
*Class rank in the top 20% or instructor approval, previous coursework in high school psychology or high school biology, and an advanced reading score.
**This is a University of Minnesota 4 credit course.

Available At: Park High School

Why do humans and non-humans behave the way they do? Psychology is the systematic study of behavior and mental processes. The course examines the interaction of biological, cognitive and sociocultural influences on human behavior, adopting an integrative approach. Knowledge of research methods, ethics and application of research are all important parts of the course. Additionally, students will gain an understanding of how psychological knowledge is generated, developed and applied enables students to have a better of themselves and appreciate the diversity of human behavior. Students will be prepared to complete the IB Psychology SL Exam. Students who complete the IB Psychology course are still required to take political science and economics.

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

The study of how people interact and influence each other’s behavior: Focusing on such topics as Culture, Socialization, Social Interaction, Deviance and Social Stratification.

Available At: Woodbury High School

Gain a deeper understanding of our society and the challenges we must face. Science and technology produce new possibilities and new problems, but an informed citizenry is the best judge of how to address these problems. With a society that is increasingly aware of culture and gender differences, citizens must deal with the major social issues and crises our differences create. Learn the basic concepts of culture and apply them to the social problems of our time.

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

Study the two deadliest wars in human history. From the Assassination that began World War I to the Atomic Bomb that ended World War II; from General Pershing to General Patton; from Woodrow Wilson to Winston Churchill; from the Kaiser to der Fuhrer; from mustard gas to gas chambers; we will investigate the insanity and brutality, as well as the courage and heroism of these events. See how they relate directly to our world today, and how the lessons of these conflicts can impact our personal lives as well.

Available At: Park High School

A thematic study of 20th Century America through its “GIANTS.” Who were the major forces in the development of Modern American culture? Literature, history, music, the arts, architecture, culture and philosophy? We will take an in-depth look at these GIANTS and their influence on the development of modern day America.

Available At: Park High School Woodbury High School

This is a course designed to increase awareness and understanding of the diversity within our individual beliefs and cultures. This course is student-led and challenges student perspectives on society. Topics are chosen by students based on what they see as “hot button issues” in our society and schools. Topics of study include treatment of others in school, lifestyle choices, gender, race and religious discrimination. Upon completion of this class, learners will have a new appreciation of the complex world in which we live and will be equipped with the skills and abilities that will allow them to be successful in today’s society.

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

The course will explore the processes, procedures and functions of the United States Government and economy and the role it plays in the wider global society. Within the course, students will engage in a deeper understanding of contemporary issues and apply current events to the overall processes of government and economics. The Civics Exam (required starting with Class of 2021) will be given in this course. The course may also incorporate learning around human centered design, hybrid delivery, local civic participation and/or service projects.

Available At: East Ridge High School Park High School Woodbury High School

This course will examine the history of people of African descent in the United States from 1619 up to the present. Topics will include the Atlantic Slave Trade, chattel slavery, abolition, reconstruction, the Jim Crow era, the Nadir period, the World Wars, the Civil Rights and Black Power Movements, the election of Barack Obama, and current events. The course will use an interdisciplinary lens, using traditional historical sources, visual art, literature, music, among others. This course will employ the scholarship of both male and female African American thinkers, writers, leaders, and historians. This course will be geared towards juniors and seniors, but will be open to everyone. This course will deepen the student’s understanding of U.S. History using multiple perspectives.