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Prof. Ken Shonk teaching a social studies education course in 2014.
The History Department works closely with other divisions on campus on several different paths to provide a background in history for future teachers. The two major options are the History Education Major, and the Social Studies Education Major, also known as the Broadfield Major.
Students on these paths will need to keep track of requirements within the History Department, and also within their chosen educational program. Wherever possible, the History Department works to respond to the needs of future educators, while preparing them with current knowledge and methods from the historical profession. A variety of programs in the department -- National History Day, Phi Alpha Theta, and preparation for the PRAXIS exams -- respond to the unique needs of future educators.
The History Education major, intended for those who intend to seek certification in Early Adolescence - Adolescence, provides a grounding in the core courses of the history major, as well as a foundation in four categories of history covering much of the world and its time periods. This program also requires the completion of HIS-408, specifically for future teachers, and some additional courses required by state statute.
Generally known as the Broadfield Social Studies program, this path to a degree allows students to complete coursework in a broad range of social studies fields across campus, while still accumulating credits in one central department. The two options of this program allow students a choice: they can earn one major and amass 20 credits in a range of other disciplines (Option A); or they can earn a minor in one program, and accumulate an even larger number of credits from those other disciplines. The BFSS program is a very clever solution to the problem of academic over-specialization: it allows future teachers to graduate without pigeon-holing them into a single specialty. Instead, they can take a wide variety of courses in many social science disciplines, thus preparing them for the varied and diverse teaching requirements of secondary education.