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SOCIAL STUDIES

Students in the Department of Social Sciences explore societies in the past and present through a variety of disciplines. The courses we offer are world history from 1450-1914 for grades 9 through 12; IB History (20th century and Modern Middle East), IB Psychology and IB Economics; LB Social Studies (Civics, Philosophy, Sociology, Geography and History); and Senior Seminar . The teachers in the department aim to provide a dynamic learning environment which fosters inquisitive, creative and astute students. In addition to the academic content of the courses, we also strive for our students to develop solid reading, writing and research skills.

The teachers in the Social Sciences Department are:

- Gretchen Bade is teaching  IB Philosophy year 1 and 2, year 10 World History, and TOK.She has taught for over a decade, in Chapel Hill, North Carolina and, prior to ACS, at the International School of Curacao, Netherlands Antilles.  Ms. Bade has a keen interest in service learning; she completed a year of service with Americorps in San Diego, CA and continues to be involved with VISIONS Service Adventures, a summer service program for teenagers.  She earned her degrees in Psychology and Secondary Education at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Ms. Bade's email address is gbade@acs.edu.lb. 

- Corey Jones cjones@acs.edu.lb

Corey is teaching year 10 World History and TOK. 

James C. Lerch teaches IB History Year 1 and IB Economics for both Year 1 and Year 2. Mr. Lerch earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Northern Arizona University in 1981, and his Juris Doctor degree in Law from University of Oregon in 1987. He practiced law for fourteen years in Prescott, Arizona before becoming a teacher. Since becoming a teacher in 2004, he has taught in five different countries on four different continents.  His email address is jlerch@acs.edu.lb

- Rebecca Naughton 

Mrs. Naughton is teaching year 10 World History and year 11 20th Century history (IB).  She has taught for 10 years in Chicago before coming to Beirut. Mrs. Naughton received her undergraduate degree in history from Eastern Illinois University, and a master's degree in Economics from Roosevelt University. Her email is rnaughton@acs.edu.lb

- Jared Peet

Mr. Peet graduated with distinction from the University of Virginia with a degree in Foreign Affairs and Middle East Studies. Mr. Peet also  holds a Master’s in Liberal Studies from St. John’s College in Annapolis and a Master’s of Teaching from Stanford University. This will be his 6th year as a teacher. Mr. Peet is teaching year 9 history and Senior Seminar. His email  is jpeet@acs.edu.lb

Else Mokleby Saoud is the Head of the Social Studies Department and teaches IB History for grade 11 and 12. She joined ACS in 2006 after having taught at Brummana High School for two years. Originally from Norway, Ms. Saoud also lived in Ghana and the US before moving to Lebanon with her family in 2003. The University of Oslo is her alma mater; she has an undergraduate degree in English, History and Political Science and a master’s degree in History. Ms. Saoud's email is esaoud@acs.edu.lb. 

Else is teaching 20th Century history (IB), The Modern Middle East History year 12. 

- Mohamad Shatila email mshatila@acs.edu.lb

- Rima Zein  email rzein@acs.edu.lb

 

Courses:

Grade 9 History: World History 1450-1750

Students study the history of the world in a truly global perspective in grade 9; the course starts with the “gunpowder empires” in Asia, continues with a study of Lebanese history, kingdoms in Africa, culture in Far East Asia before it ends up with the Renaissance and Scientific Revolution in Europe. The skills learned and practiced are manifold; research on the internet and in the library; writing of essays, pamphlets or articles; source analysis and evaluation; individual and group projects or presentations. 

Grade 10 History: World History 1750-1900

A sub-title of this course is the “Age of Revolutions”; after a study of the Enlightenment most of the course is devoted to revolutions of political, economic and social character: The American War of Independence/Revolution, the classical French Revolution, the Haitian Revolution and finally the Industrial Revolution. Imperialism is also a major topic in this course and this study involves an in-depth look at both European and African/Asian societies in the 1800s. The course builds on and further develops skills introduced in grade 9.

Grade 11 History: World History 1900-2000 (IB)

The “long 20th century” is the time period studied in this course; it starts with the causes of the First World War and ends with the fall of Communism. Main topics include: the First and Second World Wars; Hitler’s Germany; Stalin’s Soviet Union,; Mao’s China; Castro’s Cuba; and the Cold War. This is the first part of the two-year IB course in history and the major assessments include an individual research paper, essays and document-based assessments. 

IB Economics Year 1

This course is the first of a two-year sequence that will prepare students to take the IB Economics Exam at the end of their senior year. Year 1 focuses on basic concepts of both Microeconomics and Macroeconomics with topics covered including economic systems, costs, supply & demand, unemployment, inflation, and aggregate economics, among others. 

IB Economics Year 2

This course is the second of a two-year sequence that will prepare students to take the IB Economics Exam at the end of this year. The second year focuses on International and Development Economics with topics covered including free trade, protectionism, economic integration, balance of payments, exchange rates, and economic growth & development, among others. 

IB Psychology Year 1/Year 2

Psychology is the systematic study of behavior and mental processes. Year 1 IB Psychology uses an integrative approach to examine the interaction of biological, cognitive and socio-cultural influences on human behavior and the ethical concerns raised by the methodology and application of psychological research.

During Year 2, students expand their study to include either Abnormal Psychology or Health Psychology. HL students also study qualitative research design. This course culminates in a written internal assessment and two or three tests administered by the IBO.

IB Theory of Knowledge

The Theory of Knowledge (TOK) course is central to the educational philosophy of the International Baccalaureate. Students critically reflect on diverse ways of knowing and areas of knowledge. TOK encourages students to consider their roles as “thinkers” and to consider the complexity of knowledge in structuring human existence. The course is designed to link the other six discipline areas of the IB program demonstrating the integration of different fields of study into one’s means of “knowing.”

Grade 11 ACP students can take TOK as an elective course but must continue it through Grade 12. TOK is taken in lieu of Senior Seminar. 

Grade 12 History: The Modern Middle East (IB and Non IB)

After three years of world history, the students at ACS spend their final year studying the history of the region in which they live. The classes vary slightly depending on which program the students have chosen, but the time period studied is mainly the 20th century and the main topics are: The First World War and its effects on the Middle East, the mandate period, rise of independent nation states (Turkey, Iran, Saudi Arabia), the origin and development of the Arab-Israeli conflict, Abdel Nasser’s Egypt and finally the modern history of Lebanon. For the IB students this is the second year of the history course and the culminating assessments are the IB exams and research papers. 

Senior Seminar (12)

Senior Seminar will provide students with an introduction to epistemology and a selection of the most important ideas in human history.  Through readings (both primary and secondary), class discussions, documentaries, and films, students will engage a number of essential questions:

1.      What do we know and how do we know it?

2.      What is memory? How does it function and what does it mean for our lives?

3.      What is the media? How does the media shape our perspectives on the world?

4.      How do ideas develop?

5.      What has been the impact of ideas on human history?

Lebanese Baccalaureate (Grade 9-12) Course Guide

Grade 9 and Grade 12 Social Studies (History, Geography, Civics)

The LB Social Studies courses focus on the relationship between History, Geography, and Civics. Students will study social and economic developments, traditions, and norms within a range of cultures, with a specific focus on the interplay between History and Geography. Their skills of analysis, comparison, and critical thinking will be further developed through study of economic, social and political issues and the constitutions of different governments and social institutions. 

Grade 10 History: World History 1750-1900

A sub-title of this course is the “Age of Revolutions”; after a study of the Enlightenment most of the course is devoted to revolutions of political, economic and social character: The American War of Independence/Revolution, the classical French Revolution, the Haitian Revolution and finally the Industrial Revolution. Imperialism is also a major topic in this course and this study involves an in-depth look at both European and African/Asian societies in the 1800s. The course builds on and further develops skills introduced in grade 9.

Grade 11 History: World History 1900-2000

The “long 20th century” is the time period studied in this course; it starts with the causes of the First World War and ends with the fall of Communism. Main topics include: the First and Second World Wars; Hitler’s Germany; Stalin’s Soviet Union,; Mao’s China; Castro’s Cuba; and the Cold War. This is the first part of the two-year IB course in history and the major assessments include an individual research paper, essays and document-based assessments.

LB Philosophy

The Grade 11 Philosophy course will complete the first year requirements of the LB Philosophy syllabus. Students will understand the meaning of philosophy and identify its different schools to prepare them for the Grade 12 Philosophy course. This course will teach basic philosophical ideas regarding the Sophists’ concepts and the different interpretations expressed by the natural philosophers. Students will learn about the different elements of Ethics.

Text: Sophie’s World by Jostein Gaarder

Grade 12 (LB) / Philosophy

The Grade 12 Philosophy and Civilization course is a requirement for the official program of the Baccalaureate in Life Science and Socio-economic tracks. The program deals with philosophical questions concerning psychology and knowledge, with specific focus on: tendencies, the consciousness, the unconsciousness, perception, memory, imagination, and intelligence.

 

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