Social Studies Endorsement Requirements for Virginia Licensure


8 VAC 20-21-290. History and social science.


A. The program in history and social science will ensure that the candidate has demonstrated the following competencies:


1. Understanding of the knowledge, skills, and processes of history and the social science disciplines as defined by the Virginia History and Social Science Standards of Learning and how the standards provide the foundation for teaching history and the social sciences, including:


a. United States history.


(1) The evolution of the American constitutional republic and its ideas, institutions, and practices from the colonial period to the present; the American Revolution, including ideas and principles preserved in significant Virginia and United States historical documents as required by ¤ 22.1-201 of the Code of Virginia (Declaration of American Independence, the general principles of the Constitution of the United States, the Virginia Statute of Religious Freedom, the charters of April 10, 1606, May 23, 1609, and March 12, 1612, of the Virginia Company, and the Virginia Declaration of Rights); and historical challenges to the American political system;


(2) The influence of religious traditions on American heritage and contemporary American society;


(3) The influence of immigration on American political, social, and economic life;


(4) The origins, effects, aftermath and significance of the two world wars, the Korean and Vietnam conflicts, and the Post Cold War Era;


(5) The social, political, and economic transformations in American life during the 20th century;


(6) The tensions between liberty and equality, liberty and order, region and nation, individualism and the common welfare, and between cultural diversity and national unity; and


(7) The difference between a democracy and a republic.


b. World history.


(1) The political, philosophical, and cultural legacies of ancient American, Asian, African, and European civilizations;


(2) The origins, ideas, and institutions of Judaism, Christianity, Hinduism, Confucianism and Taoism, and Shinto, Buddhist and Islamic religious traditions;


(3) Medieval society, institutions, and civilizations; feudalism and the evolution of representative government;


(4) The social, political, and economic contributions of selected civilizations in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas;


(5) The culture and ideas of the Renaissance and the Reformation, European exploration, and the origins of capitalism and colonization;


(6) The cultural ideas of the Enlightenment and the intellectual revolution of the 17th and 18th centuries;


(7) The sources, results, and influences of the American and French revolutions;


(8) The social consequences of the Industrial Revolution and its impact on politics and culture;


(9) The global influence of European ideologies of the 19th and 20th centuries (liberalism, republicanism, social democracy, Marxism, nationalism, Communism, Fascism, and Nazism); and


(10) The origins, effects, aftermath and significance of the two world wars, the Korean and Vietnam conflicts, and the Post Cold War Era.


c. Civics/government and economics.


(1) The essential characteristics of limited and unlimited governments;


(2) The importance of the Rule of Law for the protection of individual rights and the common good;


(3) The rights and responsibilities of American citizenship;


(4) The nature and purposes of constitutions and alternative ways of organizing constitutional governments;


(5) American political culture;


(6) Values and principles of the American constitutional republic;


(7) The structures, functions, and powers of local, state, and national governments; and


(8) The structure and function of the United States market economy as compared with other economies.


d. Geography.


(1) Use of maps and other geographic representations, tools, and technologies to acquire, process, and report information;


(2) Physical and human characteristics of places;


(3) Relationship between human activity and the physical environment;


(4) Physical processes that shape the surface of the Earth;


(5) Characteristics and distribution of ecosystems on the Earth;


(6) Characteristics, distribution, and migration of human populations;


(7) Patterns and networks of economic interdependence;


(8) Processes, patterns, and functions of human settlement;


(9) How the forces of conflict and cooperation influence the division and control of the Earth’s surface;


(10) How physical systems affect human systems;


(11) Changes that occur in the meaning, use, distribution, and importance of resources; and


(12) Applying geography to interpret the past and the present and to plan for the future.


2. Understanding of history and social science to appreciate the significance of:


a. Diverse cultures and shared humanity;


b. How things happen, how they change, and how human intervention matters;


c. The interplay of change and continuity;


d. How people in other times and places have struggled with fundamental questions of truth, justice, and personal responsibility;


e. The importance of individuals who have made a difference in history and the significance of personal character to the future of society;


f. The relationship among history, geography, civics, and economics;


g. The difference between fact and conjecture, evidence and assertion, and the importance of framing useful questions;


h. How ideas have real consequences; and


i. The importance of primary documents and the potential problems with second-hand accounts.


3. Understanding of the use of the content and processes of history and social science instruction, including:


a. Fluency in historical analysis skills;


b. Skill in debate, discussion, and persuasive writing;


c. The ability to organize key social science content into meaningful units of instruction;


d. The ability to provide instruction using a variety of instructional techniques;


e. The ability to evaluate primary and secondary instructional resources, instruction, and student achievement; and


f. The ability to incorporate appropriate technologies into social science instruction.


4. Understanding of the content, processes, and skills of one of the social sciences disciplines at a level equivalent to an undergraduate major, along with sufficient understanding of the three supporting disciplines to ensure:


a. The ability to teach the processes and organizing concepts of social science;


b. An understanding of the significance of the social sciences; and


c. Student achievement in the social sciences.


5. Understanding of and proficiency in grammar, usage, and mechanics and their integration in writing.


B. Endorsement requirements. The candidate must have:


1. Graduated from an approved teacher preparation program in history and social science; or


2. Completed a major in history and social science or 51 semester hours of course work distributed in the following areas:


a. History: a major in history or 18 semester hours in history (must include American history, Virginia history, English history, and world history);


b. Political science: a major in political science or 18 semester hours in political science;


c. Geography: 9 semester hours; and


d. Economics: 6 semester hours.


C. Add-on endorsement requirements in history, political science, geography, and economics. The candidate must have:


1. An endorsement in history, political science, geography, or economics; and


2. Completed 21 semester hours of course work in the additional social science area (history, political science, geography, or economics) sought.