Middle school level social studies courses have an emphasis on culture and understanding of place. The objective is for students to gain a basic understanding of the world and the peoples in it. Courses include World Cultures, World Geography, Human Ideologies, and Pacific Northwest History and Geography.
The high school level social studies courses are designed to teach research skills, analytic critique, and educated skepticism. The high school level social studies courses are offered in a a rotation of World History, United States History, and Global Studies/U.S. Civics. World History is a study offering a long-scope view of history. It requires an understanding of large global patterns, both natural and human. Students examine specific events and topics of world history and weave them into the larger picture of the human narrative. United States History inspects a variety of US histories and also includes colonial and pre-colonial North America. Global Studies is a one semester study of contemporary world issues. U.S. Civics, also a one semester course, introduces the government and economic systems of America and much of the world.
Students in JCS social studies courses routinely read and critique college level texts, academic studies, and authors. Students also practice college preparation skills such as gathering sources, self-critique, and thesis development.