Social Studies

Faculty

Eric Sweetwood, Department Chair M.S. Illinois State University esweetwood@pontiac90.org
Brad Christie B.S. Illinois State University bchristie@pontiac90.org
Kim Hoss B.S. Illinois State University khoss@pontiac90.org
Nathan Stein B.S. Illinois State University nstein@pontiac90.org

Course Descriptions

UNITED STATES HISTORY (700, 701)
Class Level: 11 Credit: 1 Prerequisite: None
This is a survey course of U.S. History from its European background to the present. The first semester reviews the colonial, early national, and Civil War periods. Attention is given during the second semester to the nation’s emergence as a world power, early twentieth century developments, and events up to the present. It is designed to give an understanding of our political, social, and economic institutions.
UNITED STATES HISTORY (AP) (716, 717)
Class Level: 11, Rhet II Students: 10 Credit: 1 Prerequisite: Departmental Placement
The objective of this course is to increase the student’s understanding of United States history from discovery to the present with the goal of having each student pass the AP examination. The course is divided into nine units of study arranged chronologically corresponding to major periods in American history. The areas of concentration include historical, political, and economic history coupled with an intense study of cultural and intellectual institutions and their development. This course is taught at the college level and revolves around student-initiated research and discussion.
ILLINOIS STUDIES (718)
Class Level: 9, 10, 11, 12 Credit: 1/2 Prerequisite: None
This course provides an opportunity to study our state and local commmunity.  Emphasis is placed on Illinois geography, state and local history, historical figures from Illinois, and state and local government.  This course includes an extensive look at Pontiac and the surrounding area.  The Illinois Constitution will also be included in the content of this course.
GLOBAL STUDIES (724,725)
Class Level: 9 Credit: 1/2 Prerequisite: None
This is a survey course with a focus on global studies through historical eras.  Students will learn about the history of major world regions from Ancient Civilizations and the Middle Ages to the World Wars, Globalization, and the Modern Age to gain a deeper understanding of the origins of current world issues.  Emphasis will be placed on the use of primary and secondary sources and historical research and analysis.  In addition students will be developing the skills necessary to be successful at the high school level.
WORLD GEOGRAPHY (730)
Class Level: 9, 10, 11, 12 Credit: 1/2 Prerequisite: None
This course begins by developing concepts critical to the study of Geography (Five Themes of Geography and elements of Physical and Human Geography).  Using these concepts, students will study regions in the developed world (Europe, U.S.A., and Canada) and developing world (Africa, Middle and South America, Southwest Asia, South Asia, and the Pacific), placing emphasis on understanding the various political, economic, and social/cultural aspects of those regions.
SOCIOLOGY (735)
Class Level: 11, 12 Credit: 1/2 Prerequisite: None
This course deals with man in his social environment. Various social systems—political, economic, religious, family, race, and criminal justice—are studied. Also included are discussions of relevant modern social problems such as urban lifestyles, mass media, and popular culture. Community service is required. Sociology is recommended for juniors in the top half of their class and seniors.
PSYCHOLOGY (736)
Class Level: 11, 12 Credit: 1/2 Prerequisite: None
This course deals with the study of human behavior and personality. Students will examine several theories designed to understand the personality and the determinants of a personality. Areas emphasized include behaviorism, memory, learning theories, motivation, psychology through the life cycle, personality theories, and stress. Psychology is recommended for juniors in the top half of their class and seniors.
ECONOMICS (740)
Class Level: 11, 12 Credit: 1/2 Prerequisite: None
This is a survey course of the American capitalistic system in terms of production of goods and services; types of business organizations; money, credit, and banking; how prices are determined; distribution of income and goods; economic aspects of government; and saving and investing. The point of view of the course is based upon economics as the study of the way people attempt to make a living within the rules called an economic system.
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS (742)
Class Level: 12 Credit: 1/2 Prerequisite: None
This course is an interactive overview of U. S. foreign policy.  Its objective is to give students an understanding of why the U.S. has acted the way it has, and acts the way it does toward other nations-states.  The main topics covered are World War II, the Cuban Missile Crisis, Vietnam, the Cold War, the Middle East, the U.S. role in a changing world, and genocide.  Students will participate in a variety of active learning exercises to provide a hands-on-grasp of the way international relations works and the choices they have to make as they participate in the world political system.
CIVICS (745)
Class Level: 12 Credit: 1/2 Prerequisite: None
This course in American government emphasizes the structure and functions, of federal, state, and local government. The student’s role in a democracy is determined through relationships with citizenship, political parties, elections, interest groups, and public opinion. The state-required examination in American government and citizenship also forms part of the course requirement.