Social Studies

The purpose of the Social Studies three-year program is to help students develop the key values and attitudes, the knowledge and understanding, and the skills and processes necessary for them to become active and responsible citizens. It concentrates on enabling students to develop an understanding of who they are, what they want to become, and the society they want to live in. Furthermore, Social Studies is an issues-focused and inquiry-based subject that draws upon history, politics, economics and current events to foster understandings of practical and ethical issues that face communities and humankind.

In the above diagram, the solid arrows denote the typical pathways and preferred transfer points a student follows to progress from course level to course level, and the dashed arrows denote potential points from course level to course level.

Social Studies students at Bellerose are actively engaged on the local and world stage. They are aware of their capacity to affect change! Participation in school-based activities, local initiatives, visits to exhibitions and attendance at documentary premieres allows them to apply their problem-solving and decision-making skills to current and controversial issues. The Social Studies program is offered through two streams: the -1 stream and the -2 stream. Both levels study Globalization at Grade 10, Nationalism at Grade 11, and Ideologies at Grade 12; both require that students write a provincial diploma examination upon completion of the 30 level course, and both meet graduation requirements.

In choosing Social Studies courses, students are strongly encouraged to take teacher recommendations seriously, and to check post-secondary requirements frequently. The more academically-focused -1 stream allows students to enter post-secondary institutions but is not always necessary for Engineering, Math or Science Faculties (for complete information in these areas, please contact the post-secondary institute of choice).


5 credits 

Expectations for the Social Studies -1 stream are more challenging, particularly in areas of concept development, critical thinking and skill development. It is expected that students following this stream have an adept and broad understanding of vocabulary and strong decoding skills. They should be active, regular readers of text and visual prompts. Moreover, students should be prepared for sustained inquiry and research projects, and be able to show independence in learning.

5 credits

The Social Studies -2 stream has more focus on skill building and is designed for those students who would experience difficulty in the advanced program and/or those students who do not need the -1 exam for post-secondary entrance requirements. Students should be ready for active, constant participation within the classroom and be willing to take responsibility for their learning.

5 credits

This course includes the components and content of Social Studies 10-1; assessment criterion is based on the Alberta standard of evaluation. The full year organization of this course provides the opportunity to enhance and enrich many of the curricular aspects of Social Studies 10-1 while introducing students to important aspects of the History IB curriculum. There is an emphasis on critical thinking skills as well as an understanding of the events and people who have shaped modern Canada.

Recommended prerequisite: honours in Grade 9 Social Studies

This is a course within the IB programme

5 credits (for both Social Studies 20-1 and 30-1)

The IB History courses are based on the three key elements: content, concepts and skills. Concepts are based on big, powerful ideas that have relevance both within and across subject areas. The content for our program will focus on a solid base of factual knowledge, and throughout the program students will be encouraged to develop skills used to study history and apply them to future study.

Students will study the concepts of nationalism and ultranationalism (the rise of single party and authoritarian states) in Year 1, and they will develop skills in research, document analysis, and to critically reflect on historical evidence. The final courses in the History program provide in-depth study into International Relations 1919-1940, and causes and effects of 20th century wars. Students in Western History Year 2 will write the Social Studies 30-1 Alberta provincial diploma exam in June.


Prerequisite: Social Studies 10-1. Recommended prerequisite: Social Studies 10i.

This is a course within the IB programme 

3 credits

The focus of this course is the in depth exploration of one 20th century topic of the student's choice. Students will focus on writing and analytical skills. They will also gain expertise in the critical evaluation of information and the synthesis of ideas and theories. Students will gain an understanding of the relationship of world history to the issues of the 21st century.

Recommended Prerequisite: History HL Year 1