Social Studies

The following courses comprise the social studies curriculum:                                               

AP Government                                                                             Course # H570

Prerequisite: US History                                                                    1.0 Credit

Comparative Government is a year-long survey of six countries and their political systems, as well as the study of globalization and democratization.  Students examine Great Britain, Iran, Nigeria, Mexico, China, and Russia in order to compare the political development, political processes, institutions and public policy of each nation.  Emphasis is placed on recent politics in order to provide ample time for the discussion and analysis of current controversial issues in each country.


AP US History                                                                                    Course # H470

Prerequisite: US History                                                                       1.0 Credit

This course presents a high level, systematic study of the United States from a period of time before European explorers came to this country to the present day.  This course is an intense study of the social, economic, and political developments in this country and the relationship of the United States to other countries and of the factors and personalities that have caused this country to arrive at its current status.  Rigorous study is required in order for students to be successful when they are administered the Advanced Placement exam at the conclusion of this class.

 Books/ MaterialsThe American Pageant


AP World History I  / AP World History II                                          Course # H370/ # H371

  Prerequisite: None                                                                               1.0 Credit

 AP World History Course Description:

The purpose of the AP World History course is to assist students in developing a greater understanding of the evolution of global processes and contacts in interaction with different types of human societies. This understanding is advanced through a combination of selective factual knowledge and appropriate analytical skills. The course highlights the nature of changes in international frameworks and their causes and consequences, as well as comparisons among major societies. The course emphasizes relevant factual knowledge deployed in conjunction with leading interpretive issues and types of historical evidence. The course builds on an understanding of cultural, institutional, and technological precedents that, along with geography, set the human stage.  Periodization, explicitly discussed, forms the organizing principle for dealing with change and continuity throughout the course. Specific themes provide further organization to the course, along with the consistent attention to contacts among societies that form the core of world history as a field of study.

The AP World History course offers motivated students the opportunity to become immersed in the processes that, over time, have resulted in the knitting of the world into a tightly integrated whole. AP World History offers an approach that lets you “do history” by guiding you through the steps a historian would take in analyzing historical events and evidence worldwide. The course offers balanced global coverage with Africa, the Americas, Asia, and Europe all represented.

AP World History at WMST:

AT WMST 9th and 10th grade students have the opportunity to take the AP World History course over the course of two years rather than in one year as is the case in many high schools across the nation.   In some ways this gives them the advantage of the breadth and depth in their study of world history. However, given that this is a college level course, the challenges for underclassmen are obvious. Students will need to be committed to the additional challenge of preparing for the AP Exam at the end of their second year in the course which requires them to connect and relate material over the course of two years.

Books/ Materials: The Earth and It’s Peoples (4th Ed.)


Honors World History I                                                                     Course # H362

Prerequisite: None                                                                                    1.0 Credit


The purpose of this course, Honors World History/ Geography I is to assist the student in developing greater understandings of historical content; the complexities of major societies; and international frameworks.  This course will emphasize the political, geographic and cultural aspects of major civilizations. Further, this course will advance students’ understanding through a combination of selective factual knowledge and appropriate analytical skills. One goal for this course is to provide a rigorous curriculum that motivates students; a long term goal of this course is to help students better understand many of the complexities of the world we live in today.

Books/ Materials: Traditions and Encounters: Global Perspective on the Past, 5th Edition


Honors World History II                                                                         Course # H362

Prerequisite: World History I                                                                       1.0 Credit


This course is a survey course designed for advanced readers and writers to have the opportunity to explore the human experience from the Industrial Revolution to the present. Students will broaden their understanding of the human experiences around the world by analyzing the continuity and change of such topics as war and peace instability and strife and through the development of institutions.

Honors World History II requires increased pacing and is distinguished by its quality and level of work produced by advanced readers and writers. 

Books/ Materials: Traditions and Encounters: Global Perspective on the Past, 5th Edition


US Government/DC History                                                                    Course # H510

Prerequisite: None                                                                               1.0 Credit (0.5 cr. each)


This course presents basic facts, principles and ideas about government at the local, state, national, and international levels.  Students study the duties, responsibilities, and rights of citizens under the United States system of government and compare them with other systems of government.  This course also surveys the significant people, places, and events that formed the Potomac region, modern day Washington, D.C. Students will gain an understanding of the role of Native Americans in the Potomac region. 


Books/ MaterialsAmerican Government, City of Magnificent Int., Reader for DC History


World Geography                                                                                             Course # H230

Prerequisite: None                                                                                                1.0 Credit


This course is a survey of people, places and events which are important to understanding the global village.  Students will explore longitude and latitude coordinates, culture, language, population, and contemporary issues such as conflicts in the Middle East, African colonialism, etc.  The goal is to familiarize students with the world and help them to become “world citizens”.

 Books/ MaterialsWorld Geography Today


US History                                                                                                  Course # H460

Prerequisite: None                                                                                       1.0 Credit

This course illustrates how the American political, economic and social system developed. Topics such as Nationalism, Sectionalism, the Civil War, Reconstruction, Industrialism, and immigration are examined to illustrate the development of these strands during the 19th century.  Twentieth century content expands to include issues related to the development of foreign policy, the role of the United States as a world leader, and the domestic response to a diversified population and issues such as reform and civil rights.

 Books/ MaterialsAmerican Pathways to the Present


World History I/ World History II                                            Course # H361/H360

Prerequisite: None                                                                               1.0 Credit

This course is designed to allow students to investigate the diverse nature of world history.  It presents world history thematically, examining the socio-cultural, political and economic forces that affect human interaction.  The students will be introduced to and develop skills in the social sciences thus enhancing their appreciation for history. World History I begins its study from the Middle Ages and goes through European Industrial Revolution.  World History II picks up with the Industrial Revolution and covers up to the Cold War.    

 Books/ MaterialsWorld History