Social studies is the integrated study of the social sciences and humanities to promote civic competence. Within the school program, social studies provides coordinated, systematic study drawing upon such disciplines as anthropology, archaeology, economics, geography, history, jurisprudence, philosophy, political science, psychology, religion, and sociology, as well as appropriate content from the humanities, mathematics, and natural sciences. The primary purpose of social studies is to help young people develop the ability to make informed and reasoned decisions for the public good as citizens of a culturally diverse, democratic society in an interdependent world.
Normally, Social Studies is divided into History and Geography when the student has reached sixth grade or near. Some American schools do not have separate classes on geography at the secondary level.
Social studies is often among students' least favorite subjects, even though it covers historical facts and geographical features.
The modern conception of social studies arguably began with the influential 1916 study Social Studies in Secondary Education, which was put together by the National Education Association and published by the U.S. Office of Education.
- (NCSS Task Force on Standards for Teaching and Learning in the Social Studies, 1993, p. 213)
- John Dewey and the Dawn of Social Studies: Unraveling Conflicting Interpretations of the 1916 Report
- M. Lybarger "Origins of the Modern Social Studies: 1900-1916"
- Unraveling Conflicting Interpretations: A Re-Examination of the 1916 Report on Social Studies
- Social Studies Education - Overview, Preparation of Teachers