Social Studies Department


Social Studies Department

Jeff Newby - Resource Teacher
-- Phone: 240-740-1374
-- AP Seminar  and AP Research

Glenn Benjamin- Modern World History

Steven Cain  - AP World History, Modern World History, AP Comparative Government

Truman Derrick- US HISTORY and NSL Government

Debra Delavan -NSL Government, Law,  Comparative Religions

Sean Gibbons - AP World History, Modern World History, AP Economics

Rachel Givens -Modern World History, African American History

Sandy Hajjar - AP Psychology, Psychology, US History

Charles Howell - NSL Government

Dustin Jeter - NSL Government, AP NSL Government

Cindy Loveland - US History, AP Human Geography

Scott Mendenhall - AP US History, US History

Stephanie Staub
-- AP Psychology, US History

Rebecca Taylor- AP NSL Government, US History


  • African American History
  • Advance Placement Comparative Government and Politics
  • Comparative Religions
  • Economics
  • Advanced Placement Macroeconomics
  • Advanced Placement Microeconomics
  • Advanced Placement Human Geography A/B
  • International Human Rights
  • Law
  • Latin American History
  • Model United Nations A/B
  • Modern World History
  • National, State and Local Government
  • Psychology
  • United States History

Required Courses for Social Studies-- more information can be found in the registration booklet

9th grade—US History [on-level, honors, or AP]  

10th grade—NSL Government [on-level, honors, or AP]  

11th Grade—Modern World History [on-level, honors, or AP] 


Social Studies Electives—more information can be found in the registration booklet

African-American History 1 / African American History 2 ----0.5 credit per semester 

This course is a survey of the individuals, forces, and events that make up the experiences of African Americans in the United States. By exploring those forces, and by highlighting those individuals who helped shape the development of America, students learn that the "Black Experience" can serve as the testing ground for American democratic ideas. Emphasis is given to the impact of major events in our history on African Americans.  Grade Level: 10, 11, 12


Comparative Religions----0.5 credit per semester

Why are there multiple Hindu gods?  What is the Eightfold Path in Buddhism?  What does it mean when Jews keep kosher?  How do the many different branches of Christianity differ?  What are the Five Pillars of Islam?  Comparative Religion is a one-semester class that answers these questions and many more.  We will study Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.  Each unit focuses on the history and current beliefs and practices of followers of each religion, and there will be guest speakers or field trips for each unit.  Students will do an independent research project on a religion of their choice.  Grade Level: 10, 11, 12


Latin American History----0.5 credit per semester 

This course provides an overview of the cultural background and historical development of the nations of Latin America, their role in the world today, and their future. Problems of population distribution, cultural and economic influences and ownership, and political and social change are studied. The class will cover Latin American History chronologically, from the development of civilization through the present


Law I/Law II-----0.5 credit per semester

Students will learn the process by which American society seeks justice and order through law, and ways in which people can participate intelligently in those processes. Students examine history and philosophy of law, how the law works, and can be made to work in actual situations. Through role-plays, simulations, games, guest speakers, and case analysis, major areas to be studied include constitutional law, crime, and criminal rights and procedures. Law 2 is a continuation of Law I and provides a more in depth look at the civil trial process and the role of the attorney. The units include terrorism, constitutional law, civil law and torts, family law, and consumer law. Students apply legal precedents to real and hypothetical situations. Opportunities are provided to observe the legal process in action, explore law-related careers, take a field trip, and participate in mock trials. 



LGBTQ+ Studies-----0.5 credit per semester

This course is an interdisciplinary exploration of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning (LGBTQ+) identity,history, and culture. In Unit 1 students will examine the factors that shape identity, with a focus on intersectionality. In Unit 2 students will investigate which voices are included in the historical narrative by exploring the resistance and resilience of the LGBTQ+ community in the U.S. Unit 3 focuses on the cultural contributions of LGBTQ+ individuals and their representation in the media. Unit 4 will engage students in examining and addressing contemporary challenges faced by LGBTQ+ individuals locally, nationally, and globally. 


Model United Nations-----0.5 credit per semester

In Model UN, students will examine the history and purpose of the United Nations. They will then explore international issues that member nations of the UN must tackle while also taking time to write position papers, conduct issue research, practice resolution writing, and participate in many practice simulations.


Muslim Global Experiences-----0.5 credit per semester

Students will learn about the cultures, geography, and history of Muslims around the world.  The course will highlight the global spread of Muslims and their experiences in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and the United States. The course will address misconceptions and misunderstandings about Muslims. It also will address the discrimination many Muslims face around the world as well as how they use agency and resistance to counter it.


Psychology 1---0.5 credit per semester

Students are introduced to the study of behavior and mental processes.  While learning how to apply psychological principles to daily life, students investigate the role of scientific inquiry into the major domains of psychology.  Some topics include, social psychology, the study of the brain, sleeping and dreams, hypnosis, and the effect of drugs on behavior.  The\Psychology II course builds on Psychology I.  Some topics include child, adolescent, and adult development, memory, intelligence, learning, and psychological disorders.  


Advanced Placement Comparative Government and Politics, A/B--0.5 credit per semester

AP Comparative Government and Politics introduces students to the rich diversity of political life outside the United States. The course uses a comparative approach to examine the political structures; policies; and the political, economic, and social challenges among six selected countries: Great Britain, Mexico, Russia, Iran, China, and Nigeria. Additionally, students examine how different governments solve similar problems by comparing the effectiveness of approaches to many global issues. Think of it as an AP current events course! 


Advanced Placement Human Geography, A/B--0.5 credit per semester

AP Human Geography is an introductory college-level course where students cultivate their understanding of human geography through data and geographic analyses as they explore topics like patterns and spatial organization, human impacts and interactions with their environment, and spatial processes and societal changes. Explore how humans have understood, used, and changed the surface of Earth. You’ll use the tools and thinking processes of geographers to examine patterns of human population, migration, and land use. Units include Geography: Thinking Geographically; Population; Cultural Processes and Patterns; Political Organization of Space; Agricultural & Rural Land Use Patterns; Industry & Economic Development; Cities and Urban Land Use.


Advanced Placement Macroeconomics--0.5 credit per semester

AP Macroeconomics is an introductory college-level course that focuses on the principles that apply to an economic system as a whole. The course places particular emphasis on the study of national income and price-level determination; it also develops students' familiarity with economic performance measures, the financial sector, stabilization policies, economic growth, and international economics. Students learn to use graphs, charts, and data to analyze, describe, and explain economic concepts. By earning a passing score on the AP Macroeconomics test you can earn 3 college credits for this 1 semester course. This class is offered 2nd semester and should be paired with Microeconomics [course #SOC2065] for the 1st semester. 


Advanced Placement Microeconomics--0.5 credit per semester

AP Microeconomics begins with a study of fundamental economic concepts such as scarcity, opportunity costs, production possibilities, specialization, and comparative advantage. Major topics include the nature of functions of product markets; factor markets; and efficiency, equity, and the role of government. By earning a passing score on the AP Microeconomics test you can earn 3 college credits for this 1 semester course. This class is offered 1st semester and should be paired with Macroeconomics [course #SOC2064] in the 2nd semester. 


Advanced Placement Psychology A/B-----0.5 credit per semester

AP Psychology is for students interested in a college-level survey of human thinking and behavior. In the first semester, we study the research methods used by psychologists, the biological bases of behavior, the nature-nurture issue, sensation and perception, learning, social psychology, and the effects of sleep, dreams, hypnosis, and drugs.  In the second semester, we study memory, thinking and language, human development, motivation and emotion, stress and health, personality, intelligence, psychological disorders, and therapy.