AP Comparative Government and Politics
This course introduces students to fundamental concepts used by political scientists to study the processes and outcomes of politics in a variety of country settings. The course aims to illustrate the rich diversity of political life, to show available institutional alternatives, to explain differences in processes and policy outcomes, and to communicate to students the importance of global political and economic changes. Students, by examining theory and several current case studies gain an understanding of the nations through studying their histories, political and economic systems, election processes, and current issues involving the nations. The nations that are examined during the course are Great Britain, Russia, Mexico, Nigeria, China, Iran, and the European Union. Students are expected to come to class prepared, participate in daily discussions, work in groups, write analytical papers and prepare to take the AP exam given in May.
AP United States History
This course teaches history at a college level to high school juniors. It is challenging by design and provides students with an opportunity to develop individual thinking and critical analysis through an exploration of U.S. history. Students will develop an ability to understand and interpret the written word from both historical and contemporary sources. Students will survey American history from the colonial period until the present; using primary sources such as maps, charts, journals and original documents and secondary sources such as texts and historical journals. Throughout the year students will be engaged in extensive writing assignments in order to prepare them for both college and the AP exam. Students who succeed will earn the knowledge and skills needed to excel in college and may earn college credit.
Economics and Finance
This is a one semester course designed to provide students with the necessary skills to responsibly make important economic decisions which impact both their lives and this country. Nearly all issues and decisions in this country (and internationally) have an economic base and economic implications. This course is designed to help students to understand important economic concepts and issues in order to be able to participate in the American and international economies. The basics of investment and consumer issues will be emphasized and the students will take an exam for certification in financial literacy. Students may participate in various competitions. The course will be responsive to current events.
Global History and Geography I (Global Studies I)
History is simply a story. Early history began with story telling, with people telling stories from one generation to another. Eventually these stories were put to paper and history was recorded for posterity. Different cultures used these stories to teach morals and good behavior. As time went by people studied these stories so they could duplicate the successes and avoid the failures of other cultures. We can understand others and ourselves by studying these stories. You may begin to understand why we place so much faith in our Declaration of Independence and Constitution, why Islam is so important to a large percentage of the world’s population and why tribal customs have created such havoc throughout Africa. We can learn to be more tolerant of others by understanding the differences in diverse cultures and perhaps we can be front-runners in avoiding future wars. We will ask how, why and why not and analyze events critically instead of learning just when they happened and to whom. We will study the interaction of societies and political systems. Most importantly this will be a problem solving class. We will not settle for simple answers, instead search for the true meaning behind events.
AP World History (Global Studies II)
This course is a chronological study of the development of people from the age of Absolute Monarchies through the modern era to today. Many themes will be central to our study including government, politics, philosophy, literature, art, economics, revolutions, warfare/conflict, imperialism, and current issues. Time will be devoted to major events, people, and ideas that furthered the human experience as well as those that made an impact in a variety of ways. Connections will be made to the present in order to give students an idea of the importance of the topics of study. Short and long-term projects are assigned to facilitate and incorporate important academic concepts and real life skills. Throughout the year students will be engaged in extensive writing assignments in order to prepare them for both college and the AP exam. Students who succeed will earn the knowledge and skills needed to excel in college and may earn college credit. Students will also be prepared to take the NY State Global History and Geography Regents exam given at the culmination of the 10th grade year.
History through Film
"History through Film" is an elective history course that attempts to inform the students of historical events by having them view and discuss films that are based on these historical events. The course has just recently been changed to a one-year course. Films that are viewed in class are feature films and some docudramas, usually not documentaries.
(1) Can films that depict history be considered propaganda? (2) Is it possible for history to be accurately depicted on film? (3) Is it dangerous for people to learn about historical events through film? (4) How can we judge the accuracy of history told through film? (5) Does watching historical events on film make us more empathetic to and with the characters? Is this a good or bad thing? (6) Is history learned by any medium, other than actually being present, a biased account of events? (7) How can we realize and accommodate bias to get a more accurate account of events when studying history? (8) How can the actors that play the historical figures influence our interpretation of the events? (9) How have the personal lives of historical “players” influenced history?
Advanced Placement Macroeconomics is a college-level course taught at the high school level. The curriculum is decided by the College Board and can be found at
The goal of the course is that students have the same knowledge as those completing a college-level course in Macroeconomics and, therefore, have a solid understanding of how the economic system of the United States works and its relation to the global economy. The course culminates with the Advanced Placement exam that is created by the College Board to measure student achievement in this area.
Participation in Government
This is a one semester course designed to provide students with the necessary skills to responsibly make important political decisions which impact both their lives and this country. Participation in Government emphasizes the interaction between citizens and government at all levels: local, state and federal. The development of knowledgeable, capable and politically active citizens is the goal of this portion of the course. The course outline is flexible as the course is designed to respond to current events. American foreign policy, human rights issues and Constitutional protections will be emphasized.
Philosophy * Not offered in 2019-20
There are three reasons that make the study of philosophy so compelling. First, it can encourage you to take the time to stop and consider the great questions that have engaged the human mind since the dawn of recorded history. Questions such as “Who am I?”, “What is the creation?”, “What part do I have to play in it?”, “What is happiness?” and “What is freedom?” give us the chance to come to a greater understanding of these matters and to examine more closely our own thoughts and attitudes in relation to them. Second, philosophy deals in the realm of causes and ideas that govern human life. Much of how we think today, and what we regard as the highest ideals, has its roots in the great philosophic traditions of the past. We are, as it were, guided by the hand of philosophy in our daily dealings whether or not we are aware of the names of particular philosophers or the precise nature of the ideas that they formulated. Third, philosophy can open our minds and hearts to greater possibilities in life. The study and practice of philosophy can make possible a life lit by great and inspiring ideas and principles.
Psychology (Can be credited as a Social Studies or Science Class)
Introduction to Psychology is a year long course designed to provide you with an overview of the field of psychology. The study of psychology involves a broad range of theories and topics, some of which are complementary and others contradictory. Nonetheless, each perspective is essential to understanding the science behind how people think, feel, and act in a variety of situations. Humans are curious beings, especially in examining their own thoughts, perceptions, and behavior. Likewise, the main objective of the course is to spark your interest in the field of psychology, to see its relevance in your everyday lives, as well as to consider future opportunities for self-reflection and study.
United States History and Government
This course will allow you to learn about American History through the words and actions of those with conflicting points of view. We will examine topics in a cause and effect manner that pertain to American History. We will explore what it means to be an American and what events have shaped American society from various perspectives. We are a nation that was born from a dream and built by perseverance and trial and error. We will tell America's story from the point of view of, and in the words of, its people, all who are part of the American mosaic.