Social Studies

The Social Studies Department at Marian High School believes that America’s binding heritage is a democratic vision of liberty, equality, and justice. To preserve this vision and bring it into daily practice, we teach students how American history was shaped by the past, what events and forces either helped or obstructed it, and how it has evolved down to the circumstances of our time. Our students also explore the diverse cultural heritage of the world’s many peoples, for a comprehensive study of history and people keeps our students in touch with these realities. Marian students are made aware that this knowledge is essential for informed judgment, responsible democratic citizenship, and respect for the dignity of all individuals.

Course Offerings

List of 14 items.

  • World History

    2 semesters, 1 credit
    Open to 9

    This is a survey course which focuses on the major events and the most influential people of ancient through modern times. It incorporates political, economic, social, and cultural trends. Current events and geography are also included.
  • Honors World History

    2 semesters, 1 credit
    Open to 9
    Prerequisite: Placement by school personnel Honors

    World History is designed for students who have an enthusiasm for informal classroom discussions. The development of analytical thinking skills serves as the basis for evaluating ways of living, thinking, expressing, and believing which have shaped the course of civilization. Utilizing extensive visual aids, Honors World History provides the student with an integrated examination of historical and geographical perspectives and contemporary global issues which prepare the student for a deeper understanding of the world and themselves.
  • U.S. History

    2 semesters, 1 credit
    Open to 10
    Prerequisite: World History

    After a review of United States History from the Age of Exploration through the Civil War (1492-1865), this course provides in-depth analysis of the historical events from the late 19th century through the present day. Its chronological and thematic approach explores the evolving American identity, focusing on changes in American government, society, culture, geography, and the economy. Through the use of primary and secondary sources students grapple with some of the distinct American tensions between liberty and order, region and nation, individualism and the common welfare, and between cultural diversity and civic unity. Students practice higher level thinking through the development of historical thinking skills, historical writing skills, and note-taking skills. Students are challenged to apply their understanding to present day issues.
  • Honors U.S. History

    2 semesters, 1 credit
    Open to 10, 11
    Prerequisite: “B” or above in Honors World History; “A” in College Prep World History; passing score on a move-up test and teacher recommendation.

    The honors course in United States History provides the opportunity for advanced work, rigorous academic study, and the practical application of the major ideas and concepts found in the study of American history. The course is challenging and requires students to take greater responsibility for their learning by participating in problem-seeking and problem-solving, scholarly and creative processes, critical analysis and application, reflective thinking, and the expression and defense of ideas generated through the study of the content. Honors United States History follows the same course of study as the corresponding standard United States History course, however, the material is taught with greater complexity, novelty, acceleration, and reflects a differentiated curriculum. All Students will be required to create a project using the guidelines established by the National History Day organization. Honors United States History is distinguished by a difference in the quality of the work expected, not merely an increase in quantity.
  • AP European History

    2 semesters, 1 credit
    Open to 10, 11, 12
    Prerequisites: “A” in Honors World History or “A” in Honors U.S. History and “A-“in Honors English; an approved department application. For seniors only: “A” in Honors Economics; “A” in college preparatory History classes; “A-“ in Honors English; successful score on a move-up test to be completed during spring of junior year; an approved department application.

    The Advanced Placement program in European History is designed to provide students with the basic chronology of major events from the Renaissance to the recent past as preparation for the College Board AP examination. Active participation in philosophical discussions is expected. Students will be taught to write analytical, thesis-proving essays required of the AP College Board curriculum.
  • AP U.S. History

    2 semesters,1 credit
    Open to 11, 12
    Prerequisites: “A” in Honors World History or “A” in Honors U.S. History and an “A-“ in Honors U.S. Literature; “B” or above in AP European History; an approved department application. For seniors only: “A” in Honors Economics; “A” in college preparatory History classes; “A-“ in Honors English; successful score on a move-up test to be completed during spring of junior year; an approved department application.

    The AP U.S. History course framework is the product of several years of research into current best practices in history education. The program of study emphasizes the development of thinking skills used by historians, aligning with contemporary scholarly perspectives on major issues in U.S. History. The course is designed to encourage students to become apprentice historians who are able to use historical facts and evidence in the service of creating deeper conceptual understandings of critical developments in U.S. history. The course includes thematic learning objectives organized into seven major themes representing major historical understandings that colleges expect AP students to know. The content of the course is organized into nine historical periods that run from the pre-colonial era to the present and includes the key concepts, supporting concepts, and historical developments that are required knowledge for each period.
  • Economics

    1 semester, 1/2 credit
    Open to 11, 12
    Prerequisite: World History, U.S. History

    This course will provide students the opportunity to develop an economic way of thinking through the use of intellectual reasoning, marginal analysis, class discussion, simulations, and self-reflection. Students will study the basic economic principles of micro and macroeconomics, international economics, and be encouraged to make real life connections to classroom content.
  • Honors Economics

    1 semester, 1/2 credit
    Open to 11, 12
    Prerequisites: “B” or above in Honors U.S. History, AP European History, or AP U.S. History, Or “A” in U.S. History, teacher recommendation and an approved department application that includes a sample economics problem.

    This course introduces students to basic economic concepts and principles including scarcity and cost. It also focuses on important Microeconomics topics, including supply and demand, market structures, and cost analysis. The role of the government and the overall health of the economy will be examined in the Macroeconomics unit, as students spend time analyzing the role fiscal and monetary policy play in the United States economy. The class will also touch on International Trade and will challenge students to scrutinize free trade agreements, foreign exchange markets, and the law of comparative advantage. Finally, students will be encouraged to evaluate the role economics plays in their daily lives, including where they go to college and how to save for their future. This class will provide students with an economic framework that enables them to use economic thinking in their daily lives.
  • Global Studies

    1 semester, 1/2 credit
    Open to 11, 12

    Students will broaden their knowledge of geography and of specific countries and regions of the world currently undergoing significant environmental, political, cultural, social and economic changes. Students will study various issues, from terrorism to climate change to human rights, from the perspectives of different countries and diverse stakeholders in order to gain insight into the work of the United Nations and other global alliances. Students will apply their understandings to present day issues.
  • Psychology I

    1 semester, 1/2 credit
    Open to 11, 12

    Psychology is the science of behavior and mental processes. Students will study psychology as a social science that merges rigorous science with a broad human perspective. This includes examining the process of inquiry, developing critical thinking skills, and learning facts to support psychological concepts. The course also develops an understanding and appreciation of psychological phenomena in our lives as individuals and as part of the larger world community. The survey of topics that promotes this understanding includes: the biology of the mind; nature, nurture and human diversity; human development; human consciousness; motivation; and psychological disorders. Finally, the course develops an awareness of psychology as a mental health profession with discussion of the various perspectives and subfields within psychology. Note: 10th grade students concurrently enrolled in Honors Social Studies will be considered for this course as space permits.
  • Psychology II

    1 semester, 1/2 credit
    Open to 11, 12
    Prerequisite: Psychology I

    Building on the foundation in psychology that students gain from the current Psychology I course, Psychology II begins where Psychology I ends. Students will continue to explore the ways in which mental processes influence human behavior and vice versa. They will also have the opportunity to examine the human being in the context of society as a whole; how we think about, influence and relate to one another. Students will study the following topics: sensation and perception; learning; memory; thinking, language and intelligence; personality; emotions, stress and health; therapy; and social psychology. Students will also engage in positive psychology activities.
  • U.S. Government

    1 semester, 1/2 credit
    Open to 12
    Prerequisite: U.S. History

    U.S. Government is designed to enhance students’ understanding of the institutions of American constitutional democracy and helps them to identify the contemporary relevance of the Constitution and Bill of Rights. Critical thinking exercises, problem-solving activities, and cooperative learning techniques help develop the participatory skills necessary for students to become active, responsible citizens. Particular attention is given to:
    • Understanding institutions of America’s constitutional democracy
    • Discovering the contemporary relevance of the Constitution and Bill of Rights
    • Recognizing opportunities for active civic engagement Demonstration of students’ knowledge and understanding of constitutional principles  
    • Evaluation and defense of positions on relevant historical and contemporary issues
    • Preparation for the non-competitive congressional hearing
  • Honors U.S. Government

    1 semester, 1/2 credit
    Open to 12
    Prerequisite: “B” or above in Honors U.S. History or “B” or above in Honors Economics. Students who successfully enroll in the course will take part in the We the People: the Citizen & the Constitution curriculum, designed to promote an increased understanding of the institutions of our constitutional democracy and the fundamental principles and values on which they were founded; develop the skills needed to become effective and responsible citizens; increase understanding and willingness to use democratic processes when making decisions; and manage conflict, in both public and private life. The course is an honors-level curriculum that will explore U.S Government intensely, with particular attention given to:

    • Understanding institutions of America’s constitutional democracy
    • Discovering the contemporary relevance of the Constitution and Bill of Rights
    • Recognizing opportunities for active civic engagement
    • Demonstration of students’ knowledge and understanding of constitutional principles
    • Evaluation and defense of positions on relevant historical and contemporary issues
    • Preparation for the non-competitive congressional hearing.
  • AP Government and Politics

    2 Semesters, 1 credit
    Open to 12
    Prerequisites: “A“ in Honors U.S. History; “A-“ in Honors U.S. Litera ture, and/or “A-“ in Honors British Literature; Or “B” in AP U.S. History (strongly recommended), and/or AP European History; an approved department application.

    This course provides a college-level, nonpartisan introduction to key political concepts, ideas, institutions, policies, interactions, roles, and behaviors that characterize the constitutional system and political culture of the United States. Students will study U.S. foundational documents, Supreme Court decisions, and other texts and visuals to gain an understanding of the relationships and interactions among political institutions, processes, and behaviors. They will also engage in disciplinary practices that require them to read and interpret data, make comparisons and applications, and develop evidence-based arguments. In addition, they will complete a required applied civics project. Marian’s project is participation in the Michigan Center for Civic Education We the People Program.

    The WE THE PEOPLE component of AP government uses critical thinking exercises, problem-solving activities, and cooperative learning techniques to help develop the participatory skills necessary for students to become active, responsible citizens. Students develop the ability to identify issues that require political action and are encouraged to make a personal commitment to accept the responsibilities associated with the rights we enjoy as citizens. The culminating activity is a simulated congressional hearing in which students testify before a panel of judges at the state level. Students demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of 43 constitutional principles and have opportunities to evaluate, take, and defend positions on relevant historical and contemporary issues. The competition hearings, which take place at the State Capitol in January, provide an excellent means of motivating students.

List of 4 members.

  • Kristen Roland 

    Department Chair
    BA - Concordia University
    MA - Eastern Michigan University
  • Chad Stevens 

    BA - Michigan State University
  • Patrick Turner 

    BS - Michigan State University
  • Timothy Wallace 

    BA - Oakland University
    MA - Oakland University

Marian High School

7225 Lahser Road Bloomfield Hills, MI 48301
PHONE: (248) 644-1750
Marian High School, an IHM sponsored school, is fully accredited by NCA CASI, an accrediting division of AdvancED.

Marian is a Catholic college preparatory school for young women, sponsored by the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

The mission of Marian is to ensure, within a Christian environment, an excellent education built on a strong academic curriculum, which will enable young women to value human diversity and live responsible lives of leadership and action based on gospel values.

An enduring tradition: guiding young women spiritually, challenging them academically, and inspiring them to a life of leadership and service.