Social Studies

The Social Studies discipline is by its very nature broad and dynamic. Students learn about history, geography, culture, economics, law, government, social organization, and current issues and events. Students also learn how to belong to, and take responsibility for, the various communities of which he or she is a member: local school and neighbourhood, town and province, country and world. As students work through our social studies curriculum, they learn to think like a historian, act responsibly as citizens, and become passionate about the world in all its complexity.

Social Studies Courses

Socials 8

Social Studies 8 is a very exciting course in which students study major world religions alongside an in-depth study of World Civilizations, with an emphasis on comparative analysis of civilizations from the Fall of Rome to the Age of Exploration. Students examine the rise and fall of ancient civilizations; the role of religion as a powerful guiding force in people’s lives; the nature of social and political organization (such as feudalism); basic economic systems and forms of exchange; the impact of science and technology on political, economic, and social structures; periods of significant cultural achievement; and what causes civilizations to develop and decline. Students will also acquire fundamental geographic skills and knowledge that helps us understand both the past and the present. Throughout the course students also develop skills which are essential to the study of people and places over time: identifying and clarifying a problem, issue, or inquiry; gathering, organizing, and interpreting information from a variety of sources, including print and non-print; assessing a variety of positions on controversial issues; preparing and delivering written, oral and graphic presentations; developing library and research skills and working cooperatively. Students will also examine current events and issues throughout the year.

Socials 9

This course covers the period from 1750 to 1919. The four BIG IDEAS include emerging ideas and ideologies, the effects of the physical environment on different aspects of society, problems that result from disparities in power, and how a peoples’ collective identity can change over time. In keeping with these themes, Socials 9 students will learn about different types of revolution, the effect of imperialism on indigenous people, global demographic shifts, nationalism, discrimination, global and regional conflicts, and the different physical features of Canada.

Socials 10

Socials 10 is an exciting course that looks at Canada’s role during the 1900’s starting with World War I and concludes with the Quebec separatist issues. Students will explore how Canada became not just a more independent country but also a world player in many significant ways. While the course focuses on Canada, students will also learn about many world events that changed the world such as the Cold War, the Cuban Missile Crisis, the impact of terrorism, and others.

Students will also be introduced to the Canadian political system and the importance of democracy. The policies of federal and provincial political parties will be examined from a historical and modern perspective. Students will also see how the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms has impacted our society.

The last unit studied is Human Geography where students will look at demographics, the developed vs the developing world as well as Canada’s contribution to helping the developing world.

20th Century World History 12

Formerly known as History 12 this course covers significant historical events including major conflicts such as World War I, World War II and the Cold War. Civil wars and the rise of authoritarian regimes will also be discussed. Furthermore, the impact of civil rights and women’s rights plus the importance of economics will also be explored. This course will help students understand that events today have been greatly influenced by events of the past.


Comparative Cultures 12 - Compartive Cultures/World Religions 12 Accelerated

This course is the study of societies and cultures from a comparative and cross-cultural perspective. The student will focus on the differences and similarities between cultures across time and space as well as analyzing their specific interactions, spiritual constructs, religions and value systems, power structures, agricultural and technological development and more. The goal is to foster an understanding in the student of his or her own multi-cultural backgrounds, how culture changes over time and how it affects their modern world. This course will be an excellent opportunity for students interested in pursuing the Arts to receive additional Arts credits and allow them to take more courses in their grade 11 and 12 years.

Economics 12

This course introduces students to the role that economics plays in our everyday lives.  The course commences with a basic introduction to Economics as a social science and how we make economic decisions with the scarce resources that we have.  The course is intended to have the students well prepared for an introductory course in Economics in university. In that regard, the next two major areas of focus in the course are Microeconomics as well as Macroeconomics.  Microeconomics explores how individuals, households and firms make decisions with how they choose to allocate the resources that they have. Macroeconomics explores the behavior and performance of an economy as a whole. It explores wider economic areas such as unemployment, growth rate, gross domestic product and inflation.

Law 12

This course is an interesting look at our legal system. The major component will be to analyze criminal law, civil law and family. Students will grow to understand the need for laws and the importance of the Charter of rights and freedoms. They will also learn that with rights and freedoms comes responsibilities to act in a responsible manner and be good citizens of Canada.

Physical Geography 12

As an ever-increasing world population puts more and more demands on the planet’s resources, there is a need for a society that is able to make informed decisions about the sustainability of the Earth’s resources and the future of the planet. The geographically literate student is able to interpret the landscape and understand the interconnections between his or her actions and the Earth’s physical systems. Students will have opportunities to analyze the critical interplay of culture, economics, politics, and social considerations when examining the relationship between people and the environment. Through the study of geography, students can develop an understanding of how local, regional, and global environments affect them, and allow them to make informed decisions and take appropriate action to manage the earth’s resources in a responsible manner.

Psychology 12

This course designed to introduce students to the basic concepts and areas of study within the social science of Psychology.  The course essentially looks at the systematic and scientific study of the behavior and mental processes of human beings and other animals.  It looks at how our thoughts, behaviors, and emotions affect how we develop through our lifespan. Students who take Psychology 12 will have the potential to challenge the AP Psychology exam in order to obtain university credit for the course.

Social Justice 12

Social Justice 12 is a course that allows students to explore the background and possible solutions to many of the social injustices in our local and global communities. Major topics include systemic poverty, feminism, First Nations and the legal system, genocides, LGBTQ, and globalization. Throughout all these topics students are encouraged to develop their empathy skills and to reflect on their values and beliefs. A major component of this course is the Action Plan. This year-long project encourages students to research and then work for a cause that interests them and then present their findings to the class. Social Justice 12 is accepted at many Canadian universities as a grade 12 approved course.

Social Justice/Genocide Studies 12 Accelerated

This new course at STMC allows students to complete the requirements of two courses within one calendar school year and receive 8 credits. Students interested in the Arts and with strong academic skills and work habits will be able to challenge themselves in this course that investigates many of society’s injustices with an added emphasis on the causes and responses to genocides around the world. Social Justice units will include racism, First Nations, poverty, feminism and others so that students can see why injustice occurs and how society responds to them. The backgrounds, political motivations, methods and international responses to genocides will be integrated and investigated throughout the course. This course will be an excellent opportunity for students interested in pursuing the Arts to receive additional Arts credits and allow them to take more courses in their grade 11 and 12 years.