Social Science major in Preparation for the Single Subject Teaching Credential

This major is intended for students who want to teach History, Government, Economics, or Geography at the high school level.

Program Mission, Learning Goals, and Degree Learning Outcomes

Program Mission

The Social Science major in preparation for the single subject teaching credential is designed for students who want to pursue a career teaching History, Geography, Government, and Economics at the middle school or high school level. Students take courses in each of the four areas to acquire of knowledge of the California content standards in Social Science, preparing them to teach each subject. Our aim is for students to develop a rich understanding of Social Science topics and methodology that cuts across specific disciplines, and to use that knowledge to think critically about society and culture. The major also introduces students to the teaching profession and develops skills necessary to be an effective teacher. Students who choose this major will acquire the content knowledge and early fieldwork experience necessary to successfully complete a credential program and teach in California middle schools and high schools.

Program Learning Goals

1. Recognize and apply global perspectives in the study of history, human culture, geography, government, and economics.
2. Develop an understanding of United States history, culture, geography, government, and economics, and of the evolving national experience
3. Use historical interpretation, geographic analysis, economic analysis, and other Social Science methods to examine claims and theories related to society and culture.
4. Apply methods of Social Science inquiry, analysis and interpretation to real world problems.
5. Acquire teaching, learning and assessment strategies.

Degree Learning Outcomes

DLO1: Analyze how political, intellectual, social, cultural, religious, gendered, economic, technological, and ecological forces have shaped world history (PLG #1, 3)
DLO2: Recognize and explain cause and effect relationships important to world history (PLG #1, 3)
DLO3: Draw informed comparisons and contrasts between different societies and time periods (PLG #1, 3)
DLO4: Analyze the major themes and issues in American and California history and the historical forces that have shaped them (PLG #2, 3)
DLO5: Recognize the importance of cultural diversity in shaping American and California history (PLG #2, 3)
DLO6: Investigate the historical struggles over power and freedom and how they have shaped the United States and California (PLG #2, 3, 4)
DLO7: Articulate the rights and responsibilities of citizens in a representative democracy (PLG #2,3,4)
DLO8: Describe the institutions of American and California government and the distribution of political power across them (PLG #2, 3, 4)
DLO9: Identify and analyze the interrelationships between physical, cultural, economic and environmental influences that shape U.S. regions (PLG #2)
DLO10: Identify the ways in which human societies create and transform their social and physical environments (PLG #2, 3)
DLO11: Utilize economic theory to understand how economic forces affect people’s lives and wealth creation within societies (PLG #2, 3, 4)
DLO12: Analyze current events using micro- and macroeconomic principles (PLG #3, 4)
DLO13: Utilize both primary and secondary sources to develop a historical analysis (PLG #3, 4)
DLO14: Observe and reflect on classroom instructional techniques (PLG #5)
DLO15: Utilize a variety of teaching, learning, and assessment strategies that are appropriate to history/social science, including the appropriate use of instructional technology (PLG #5)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do I declare Social Science as my major?

Declaring the major is easy! First of all, make sure whether you want to declare as a Regular Social Science major (very flexible and diverse major) or a Social Science Single Subject major (preparation for teaching high school). Just schedule a visit with the undergraduate adviser, Dr. Brian Adams, in NH 122 to change your major and for a signature and an evaluation.

 

Do I need to major in Social Science to become a history teacher?

No. Students can choose other majors and then go on to receive a credential. The Social Science major, however, is designed to provide students the content they need to pass the CSET exam (a requirement for entering a credential program) and to successfully teach a wide range of Social Science courses at the high school level.

 

What do I need to do to enter a credential program at SDSU?

You need to pass the CSET, which tests your knowledge of History, Geography, Government, and Economics. You also need to take the CBEST, have 45 hours of early field experience (for Social Science majors met by TE 362, a required course for the major), and take three prerequisite courses: ED 451, SPED 450, and TE 280. For more information go here: http://go.sdsu.edu/education/ste/programs_credential_overview.aspx

 

Does the Social Science major have a CSET waiver?

We currently do not, meaning that all SDSU students need to pass the CSET before entering a credential program. However, we are in the process of applying and thus may have one in the future.

 

Can I take Social Science courses for my "explorations" requirement?

Yes. Social Science courses that meet one of the "explorations" requirements will clear both the explorations requirement as well as count for the major.

 

How do I know if the introductory Social Science courses I took elsewhere are equivalent to SDSU's courses?

While some community and junior colleges offer direct equivalents to all of SDSU's major preparation (lower division) courses, you must not assume all are equivalent. It is best to consult your undergraduate adviser or the advisers in the University Advising Center located in Student Services. Normally you must wait until the transcript evaluators have determined transfer credit (usually during your first semester). If you cannot wait for that determination, log on to www.assist.org (the web-based clearinghouse for articulation agreements among all California institutions of higher education) to determine if agreements exist for your course. "Assist" will tell you if your course is the equivalent of SDSU courses.

 

Will units earned on study abroad or foreign exchange apply to my major?

San Diego State University is a recognized leader in international education, and boasts a wide variety of excellent opportunities for study abroad. The Social Science department strongly encourages students of all majors and minors to take advantage of these opportunities for international experience, and strives to accommodate units transferred from overseas institutions and programs.

Most study abroad programs require that you meet first with a major adviser for approval of planned course work. However, final approval of units is done upon your return. Normally you must wait until the international transcript evaluators have determined transferability of your overseas course work, though this process can be facilitated by meeting with the adviser to go over your materials. If the Registrar rejects a course you believe should have been transferable, bring supporting documents to the adviser to determine if that decision can be challenged by petition.

Note that SDSU need not offer an exact equivalent course in order to accept credits from abroad, particularly at the upper division level. When you take courses overseas for which no SDSU equivalents exist, we can usually apply those units toward the major or minor, presuming you can support a petition with relevant documents (e.g., syllabus or catalog description). You will need to meet with a department adviser to determine field eligibility of the course(s) in question. Under no circumstances will the university allow more than 12 units of upper division course work by transfer to the major, or 6 units to the minor (that is, half of your upper division major or minor units must be completed at SDSU). Note that official "SDSU study abroad programs" (such as the London, Paris, and Florence semesters) earn "resident" units, just as if earned on campus.

 

Where can I find answers to other advising questions?

Please contact Professor Brian Adams at socsciad@sdsu.edu or stop by advising hours (see below). For information about applying to a credential program, please contact the advising center in the College of Education: http://go.sdsu.edu/education/oss/walkinhours.aspx

Resources for Prospective Teachers

General Social Science major

This major is intended for students who want a broad understanding of Social Science and have an appreciation of the interrelatedness of its disciplines.

Program Mission, Learning Goals, and Degree Learning Outcomes

Program Mission

The Social Science major provides students with a broad understanding of Social Science and an appreciation of the interrelatedness of its disciplines. This program provides a liberal arts education that seeks to develop analytical, critical thinking, and writing skills that can be applied to a wide range of occupations and professions. Students have the opportunity to develop a unique course of study to match their interests or career objectives. By bringing together courses in 12 departments (Anthropology, Economics, Geography, History, Political Science, Sociology, Africana Studies, American Indian Studies, Chicana and Chicano Studies, Psychology, Religious Studies, and Women’s Studies), students are able to draw on many disciplinary perspectives to develop their knowledge and skills.

Program Learning Goals

1. Communication: Communicate, both orally and in writing, Social Science concepts and knowledge effectively.
2. Application: Apply Social Science methods, analysis and interpretation to real world problems.
3. Breadth of knowledge: Understand, analyze and interpret themes that cut across Social Science disciplines and understand central debates within the Social Sciences.
4. Depth of knowledge: Acquire an understanding of the theories, methods, and debates within the student’s chosen specialization.
5. Critical thinking: Use critical thinking to analyze central issues in the study of Social Science.

Degree Learning Outcomes

DLO1: Apply Social Science theory to social, political, and economic problems (PLG #2, 5)
DLO2: Present and synthesize divergent and/or opposing viewpoints on a given social, political, or economic issue (PLG #1, 3, 4, 5)
DLO3: Identify key disciplinary concepts in the student’s chosen specialization (PLG #2, 4)
DLO4: Identify different theoretical approaches in the student’s chosen specialization (PLG #4, 5)
DLO5: Identify how social, political, and economic institutions influence individual behavior (PLG #3, 4, 5)
DLO6: Use the scientific method to understand causal forces behind social, political, and economic phenomenon (PLG #2, 5)
DLO7: Employ different analytic techniques to find patterns in data and answer research questions (PLG #1, 2, 5)
DLO8: Recognize cultural diversity and analyze how it impacts social, political, and economic processes (PLG #2, 3, 4)
DLO9: Locate, utilize, and properly cite scholarly and popular sources of information (PLG #1)
DLO10: Formulate and defend coherent written arguments with effective support and evidence (PLG #1, 5)
DLO11: Formulate and defend coherent arguments orally, as well as adapting and refining them in an interactive context (PLG #1, 5)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do I declare Social Science as my major?

Declaring the major is easy! First of all, make sure whether you want to declare as a Regular Social Science major (very flexible and diverse major) or a Social Science Single Subject major (preparation for teaching high school). Just schedule a visit with the undergraduate adviser, Dr. Brian Adams, in NH 122 to change your major and for a signature and an evaluation.

 

What can I do with a Social Science major?

The Social Science major is not vocational training, and thus there is no specific career path. Rather, the major provides students with analytical, critical thinking and writing skills that can be applied to a wide range of careers. While at SDSU students should explore potential career paths through internships, talking with faculty, and utilizing the resources at the career center.


Can I take Social Science courses for my "explorations" requirement?

Yes. Social Science courses that meet one of the "explorations" requirements will clear both the explorations requirement as well as count for the major.

 

Can I take Social Science courses online?

Yes. Many Social Science courses are offered online, and there is no limit to the number of courses a student is allowed to take online.

 

How do I know if the introductory Social Science courses I took elsewhere are equivalent to SDSU's courses?

While some community and junior colleges offer direct equivalents to all of SDSU's major preparation (lower division) courses, you must not assume all are equivalent. It is best to consult your undergraduate adviser or the advisers in the University Advising Center located in Student Services. Normally you must wait until the transcript evaluators have determined transfer credit (usually during your first semester). If you cannot wait for that determination, log on to www.assist.org (the web-based clearinghouse for articulation agreements among all California institutions of higher education) to determine if agreements exist for your course. "Assist" will tell you if your course is the equivalent of SDSU courses.

 

Will units earned on study abroad or foreign exchange apply to my major?

San Diego State University is a recognized leader in international education, and boasts a wide variety of excellent opportunities for study abroad. The Social Science department strongly encourages students of all majors and minors to take advantage of these opportunities for international experience, and strives to accommodate units transferred from overseas institutions and programs.

Most study abroad programs require that you meet first with a major adviser for approval of planned course work. However, final approval of units is done upon your return. Normally you must wait until the international transcript evaluators have determined transferability of your overseas course work, though this process can be facilitated by meeting with the adviser to go over your materials. If the Registrar rejects a course you believe should have been transferable, bring supporting documents to the adviser to determine if that decision can be challenged by petition.

Note that SDSU need not offer an exact equivalent course in order to accept credits from abroad, particularly at the upper division level. When you take courses overseas for which no SDSU equivalents exist, we can usually apply those units toward the major or minor, presuming you can support a petition with relevant documents (e.g., syllabus or catalog description). You will need to meet with a department adviser to determine field eligibility of the course(s) in question. Under no circumstances will the university allow more than 12 units of upper division course work by transfer to the major, or 6 units to the minor (that is, half of your upper division major or minor units must be completed at SDSU). Note that official "SDSU study abroad programs" (such as the London, Paris, and Florence semesters) earn "resident" units, just as if earned on campus.

 

Where can I find answers to other advising questions?

Please contact Professor Brian Adams at socsciad@sdsu.edu or stop by advising hours (see below).

Job Hunting Resources

Advising

Dr. Brian Adams
Phone: (619) 594-4289
Office: NH 122
E-mail: socsciad@sdsu.edu

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