SOCS - Social Science Education

Effective 1 June 2014 through 31 May 2015

Please see the Graduate Catalog Archives for PDF versions of past catalogs.

SOCS 5000 Interdisciplinary Course

Students entering the program are required to take the interdisciplinary course. There are opportunities to work across discipline lines with faculty from other departments, to help develop minicourses to meet specific needs, and to work with teachers from all educational levels in a cooperative manner that encourages sharing of knowledge. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

  • Global Awareness (2-3)
    Students explore the issues, philosophies, and methodologies in teaching global awareness education in grades K-12. Topics arising from the present nuclear-age, interdependent civilization, including population, values, the environment, diplomacy, and international economics are addressed. The inclusion of these issues in elementary and secondary school curriculum is also examined.
  • Multiethnic Education (3)
    This course examines issues arising from the debate as to the manner in which curriculum reflects the diversity of American society. This course explores various viewpoints regarding minority and set gender curriculum issues, as well as the meaning of Eurocentric approaches to the past and present.

SOCS 5010 Social Studies for Secondary Schools (2-4)

This course is designed to assist participants in gaining an overview of significant social studies curricula being used at the secondary level. It also introduces students to the area of historiography, which enables them to understand specific ways students can grasp the historical process.

SOCS 5030 Contemporary World Affairs (2-3)

A crucial feature of the twentieth century has been the globalization of human society. Participants in this course examine the key world issues affecting us, including their origins, current status, and prospects for the future. Particular emphasis is on global survival issues and their interrelationships. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

SOCS 5040 Modern Asian Civilization: Modern China (3)

Students examine the background of Western impact on traditional China, the revolution in China leading to the creation of the People’s Republic of China, and current U.S. relations with China. The course focuses on 10 to 15 problem questions using readings and discussions. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

SOCS 5050 Studies in Character Education (3)

This course examines the psychology and application of character and values education as it relates to humane education. Students reflect on the developmental perspectives of prosocial behaviors such as cooperation and compassion. Research on programs that aim to instill student values (e.g. responsibility, prosocial behavior, kindness) are evaluated. Classroom applications of character education programs are explored.

SOCS 5070 Teaching Methods for Adolescents (3)

The focus of this course is teaching strategies, curricular approaches, classroom methods, resources, and materials for working with middle school, junior high, and senior high school students. Discussion covers the practical classroom applications of various theories and research in adolescent development.

SOCS 5080 Topics in Classroom Computing (1-3)

Participants examine a specific topic, programming language, or application methodology for using computers in the classroom, especially in the language arts and the social studies. May be repeated for credit if content varies.

SOCS 5190 School as a Workplace for Teacher Leaders (3)

This course focuses on the role of the teacher as a leader in the classroom, school and wider community. Students examine the different ways in which teachers provide leadership both inside and outside the classroom. The positive effects of teacher leadership in areas such as instructional coaching, adoption of technological innovations, service through school committees as well as local and national advisory boards will be explored. Evidence based approaches to teacher leadership and their effect on student learning will also be examined.

SOCS 5200 Independent Study (1-3)

Students with special interests or needs that are not met by existing curricula may request that a member of the faculty supervise an independent study. Together the student and faculty member decide the content of the independent study and the criteria for evaluation. In no case is an independent study set up when an existing course already covers the subject. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

SOCS 5201 Advancement to Candidacy (0)

In this course, candidates reflect on completed program experiences that demonstrate their attainment of professional and key program goals. Candidates complete a reflective essay about their professional growth experience in the program and impact on student learning. These documents are electronically submitted via the assessment system. Depending on major, candidates may be asked to select the thesis vs non-thesis option. Prerequisites: minimum of 9 graduate credit hours in program; at least one required course.

SOCS 5210 In-Service Education (1-4)

Various graduate in-service courses are offered that are not part of the existing curricula but provide experiences important to the academic and professional development of educators. Consult the semester course listings for specific topics. Prerequisite: prior approval of the advisor. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

SOCS 5230 Cultural Geography (3)

This cultural geography course will study people and places. Cultural geography focuses on how people make and structure locations. The course will study how we organize space and society while we interact with each other in places and across space. How we make sense of others and ourselves in our locality, region and world will be studied. Such topics as religion, language, urbanization, globalization among others will be used to accomplish this study.

SOCS 5250 Topics in Economic Education (3)

Students work with new materials in economics education and study selected topics in economics. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

SOCS 5260 Topics in Geography (3)

A combination of work with experimental units in geography as well as geographical concepts, the course is of interest to teachers seeking ways to make geography more relevant to the lives of students. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

SOCS 5270 Westward Expansion in the United States (1-3)

This course examines significant developments in the expansion of the United States into the western territories. Events such as The Louisiana Purchase, The Lewis & Clarke Expedition; The Missouri Compromise and the California Gold Rush will be explored. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

SOCS 5280 Early Civilizations of the Americas (3)

This course examines significant developments in the expansion of the United States into the western territories. Events such as The Louisiana Purchase, The Lewis & Clarke Expedition; The Missouri Compromise and the California Gold Rush will be explored. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

SOCS 5400 Issues in Education

This course provides an opportunity to examine a selected issue area in education through readings, discussion, and individual projects. May be repeated for credit.

  • Family Transitions (3)
    Students in this course examine the impact of modern family dynamics on young children and adolescents. Topics include family stress, blended family dynamics, and single-parent families. Emphasis is placed on the teacher’s role in working with parents and students experiencing these transitions.
  • St. Louis History (2-3)
    Students are engaged in a chronological, thematic approach to teaching St. Louis history within the content of national American history. Use of primary materials and material culture in the classroom is emphasized. Students are expected to produce and teach a St. Louis history lesson plan based on primary materials and to write short papers (two to three pages) based on assigned readings/discussion questions during the course.
  • Urban Education (3)
    This course examines contemporary issues in education through means of discussion, reading, and individual projects. Participants study key controversies, such as busing, open enrollment, the urban school, and teacher movements.

SOCS 5410 In-Service Topics (1-3)

In-service courses are designed to provide MAT degree-seeking students with practical applications of contemporary research and methodology to improve classroom effectiveness. These courses have been approved for the MAT with prior approval of the student’s advisor. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

SOCS 5490 Seminars in Social Sciences (1-3)

Seminars are designed to focus on contemporary research and classroom application of these data. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

SOCS 5600 Globalization & Education: Systemic Perspectives (3)

This course explores the effects of modern developments in the international political economy that have led to the expansion of cross-national educational comparisons. Such comparisons have accentuated the global achievement gap and the changing role of the state in education. Moreover the emergence of standardization and accountability measures in schools is directly correlated with international trends. The effect of these ongoing trends on educational policy and schooling will be explored. Particular attention will be paid to the educational impact of globalization on minority, indigenous and vulnerable communities. Students will also survey the role of technology, communications, governance, popular media and their place in the advancement of globalization such that educational institutions also reflect their influence. The interaction of local and global phenomena that influence educational policy and practice are practical, ongoing areas of concern within the course.

SOCS 5610 Interactive Explorations in History & Geography (3)

This course enables educators to explore geographical spaces and historical developments using interactive modeling software. In this course students use spatial modeling tools to explore physical geography and historical themes. Spatial and GIS tools will be used to explore social science themes such as human rights crises, conflict and historical events. Students will take a critical approach to the study of historical events. Core aspects include reflection and unit development.

SOCS 5680 Historical Biography (3)

This course examines the lives and influences of one or more persons in American society who have shaped historic events in the 19th and 20th centuries. Focus is on how historic personalities contributed to the dialogs and activities which have supported the advancement of individual rights and freedoms in the struggle for equal access and participation in the United States. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

SOCS 5690 American Government (2-3)

This course focuses on the decision-making process in American government by examining several case studies. There will be extensive class discussions and advanced level examination of the dynamics of government in the United States. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

SOCS 5700 Middle School History and Philosophy (3)

Students examine the history of the middle school movement and its evolving philosophy. Implications for school design, organization, and curricula are also studied. Prerequisite: PSYC 2250 Adolescent Psychology or EPSY 5540 Psychology of Early Adolescence.

SOCS 5740 Economics: Choices and Challenges (3)

Designed to assist teachers in preparing students for consumer education, this course explores significant ideas concerning how and why one should become aware of issues in modern consumerism.

SOCS 5750 Special Institute

Webster offers various institutes to provide a wide range of workshop experiences and contemporary topics within the social science program. May be repeated for credit if content differs. For more specific and current information, see the current course offerings.

  • Colonial Williamsburg Field Study (3)
    Enjoy a field based course where Pre-service students will be engaged in the Living History museum at Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia, and will be exposed to new pedagogical practices in the field of the social sciences. Theoretical paradigms from multiple intelligences, constructivism, living history, and museum interpretation will be explored. Students will live in the historic museum for 4 days/3 nights and immerse themselves in eighteenth-century Virginia culture. Expert historians, interpreters, social studies educators, archivists, and curators along with a professor and master teacher will lead the course. This course will meet certification methods requirements for elementary, middle, and secondary certification in social studies.
  • Eighteenth Century Tidewater Virginia (3)
    Explores the social and material culture of eighteenth-century tidewater Virginia. Emphasis areas include gender issues, Native American, European, and African interactions that helped shape and define the American character.
  • Understanding the African-American Child (2-3)
    This course is intended to provide students with research and data about issues in the black experience that affect motivation, discipline, and cognition. Information is shared about learning styles, the psychology of performance, curriculum materials, and teaching strategies that can be applied to classroom instruction.

SOCS 5760 Middle School Curriculum and Instruction (3)

Students examine curricular and instructional strategies for the middle school. Interdisciplinary curricula, evaluation of instruction and learning, instructional technologies, and personalization of learning are discussed. Prerequisite: SOCS 5700 Middle School History and Philosophy.

SOCS 5840 Comparative Educational Systems (3)

Comparing educational systems from various countries increases international understanding and provides insights into our own education methodology and values. Each participant is responsible for researching a particular system and providing an abstract for class evaluation and discussion.

SOCS 6000 Advanced Graduate Certificate Project (3)

The advanced graduate certificate (AGC) project is the culminating experience in the AGC program. The student chooses a faculty member to supervise this final project. Examples include a presentation or demonstration for a class, a school district, a local board of education, or a community group; a paper or research project which might be published or distributed within an appropriate school, community group, or for a large audience; or an action project designed and implemented within the student's place of employment. Prerequisite: permission of the AGC coordinator.

SOCS 6001 Integrated Project in Social Science Education (3)

In this course students develop and implement a comprehensive project in their specialization area in social science education. The project may be a field-based design, implementation and evaluation of a course, program or curriculum, or a professional development plan for other educators. It may also be a research project.

SOCS 6250 Thesis in Social Science Education (3)

The student completes a thesis project under the supervision of two faculty members. The thesis option is recommended for those considering graduate study at the doctoral level. All theses must follow university guidelines and be deposited in the Webster University library. Prerequisite: EPSY 5800 Applied Research.