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Welcome to the Individuals & Societies Department

Brief Introduction 
Individuals & Societies, or Social Studies, is a core subject in the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum at Thomas Edison High School. IB curriculum gives all students the opportunity to participate in higher level, thematic-based classes. In these classes students are able to explore and create in a way not found in the typical classroom.  

Individuals & Societies courses aim to promote an understanding of history where students are encouraged to comprehend the present by reflecting critically on the past. Students are further expected to understand historical developments at national, regional and international levels and learn about their own historical identity through the study of historical experiences of different cultures. One of the key goals of Individuals & Societies courses is for students to develop an awareness that human attitudes and beliefs are widely diverse and that the study of society requires and appreciation of such diversity.  

Courses
Geography (Grade 9)
Course Duration: 1 semester
Course Description: Students will gain an understanding of the cultural, political and spatial relationships of and between nations.


Global Communities (Grade 9)
Course Duration: 1 semester
Course Description: Global Communities is a semester long course where students will gain an understanding of Global Issues, Global Interactions, Equity, and Social Justice in many forms around the world. In addition, 9th grade students complete a large research project, World Savvy, focusing on equity and social justice issues around our world.

African American Studies (Grades 9-12th)
Course Duration: 1 semester
Course Description: African American History for 9th graders is an ethnic studies class that covers a general overview of the history of African Americans in the United States, from enslavement to segregation to civil rights to current events. In addition, 9th grade students complete a large research project, World Savvy, focusing on equity and social justice issues in our community.


United States History (Grade 10)
Course Duration: Year
Course Description: Students will study events in United States history from European contact to present day, and engage in critical thinking and analysis.


World History (Grade 11)
Course Duration: Year
Course Description: Students will realize that the world contains many different cultures, nations, and ethnic groups; and learn about the historical events, figures, and cultures that have shaped the lives of people and nations.


IB History Yr. 1 HL (Grade 11)
Course Duration: Year
Course Description: It is similar to a college history course. There is a strong emphasis on encouraging students to develop intercultural understanding, open-mindedness, and the attitudes necessary for them to respect and evaluate a range of points of view. The main topics of study are: The Causes, Practices and Effects of 20th Century Wars; The Cold War; Rights and Protests – Civil Rights Movement and South African Apartheid. *Please refer to the IB section, page 24, for course information.


IB History Yr. 2 HL (Grade 12)
Course Duration: Year
Course Description: It is similar college level history course. Students must take IB History Yr. 1 to participate in this course. There is a strong emphasis on encouraging students to develop intercultural understanding, open-mindedness, and the attitudes necessary for them to respect and evaluate a range of points of view. The main topics of study are: History of the Americas; North America and South America, Independence Movements, American Civil War, and The Depression. *Please refer to the IB section, page 24, for course information.


Government (Grade 12)
Course Duration: 1 Semester
Course Description: Students will learn about the history of our political institutions, the political process, elections, the branches of government, and the rights and responsibility of citizens.


Economics (Grade 12)
Course Duration: 1 Semester
Course Description: Students will study how people use their scarce resources to satisfy their needs and wants; gain practical information on budgeting, purchasing insurance, saving, and investing; and study America’s mixed economy, labor unions, and international trade.

document Individuals & Societies MYP Curriculum   --  An overview of the MYP units for Individuals and Societies