Apr 23, 2024  
2023-2024 University Catalog 
2023-2024 University Catalog

Social Studies Education, BA

About the Program

Social Studies Education (SSED) is a comprehensive teacher preparation program aligned with state and national standards to prepare individuals to teach a variety of social studies subjects at the secondary (grades 5-12) level.

Faculty have designed SSED to prepare graduates who are able to develop informed and active participants in a diverse and democratic society. To achieve this goal, SSED reflects both best practices in teacher education and an emphasis on essential content knowledge.

Students complete extensive coursework in three areas: Historical Perspectives, Economics, and Government/Citizenship, and introductory coursework in the remaining social studies content areas. Students may also choose to complete additional concentrations in Psychology and/or Sociology. Professional education courses are taken throughout the program with field experiences built in each semester of the program.

This program meets state and national licensure standards and is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) and the State of Indiana, State Board of Education. Admission to and successful completion of the Teacher Education Program (TEP) are required.

The Social Studies Education Plan of Study outlines the required courses to complete the degree for licensure. For more information about the degree program, visit the COE Office of Advising and Recruiting. For teacher licensure information, visit the Office of Teacher Education and Licensure.

Social Studies Education Major Change (CODO) Requirements   

Degree Requirements

129 Credits Required

Departmental/Program Major Courses (122-126 credits)

Major: Required Education Courses (44 credits)

**Course included in Professional Education GPA (“B” average with no grade lower than a “C”).

Required Learner Pathway Concentration (6-9 credits)

Choose one of the following Pathway Concentrations. A number of the credits required for the concentrations are met by required major courses.

Major: Social Studies Content (63 credits)

Major: Social Studies Content GPA Requirement: 2.50

Historical Perspectives Selectives (9 credits)

  • Any HIST course, 30000-level or above - Credit Hours: 3.00
  • Any HIST course, 30000-level or above - Credit Hours: 3.00
  • Any HIST course, 30000-level or above - Credit Hours: 3.00

Civics and Government (15 credits)

Civics and Government Selectives (9 credits)

  • Any POL course, 30000-level or above - Credit Hours: 3.00
  • Any POL course, 30000-level or above - Credit Hours: 3.00
  • Any POL course, 30000-level or above - Credit Hours: 3.00
Economics Selective (3 credits)

  • Any ECON course, 30000-level or above - Credit Hours: 3.00
Psychological Sciences Selective (3 credits)

  • Any PSY course, 10000-level or higher - Credit Hours: 3.00
Sociology Selective (3 credits)

  • Any SOC course, 10000-level or higher - Credit Hours: 3.00

Other Departmental/Program Course Requirements (9-10 credits)

Electives (3-7 credits)

Grade Requirements

  • **Course included in Professional Education GPA (“B” average with no grade lower than a “C”). (NO COURSES NOTED WITH THE **)

GPA Requirements

  • Major: Social Studies Content GPA Requirement: 2.50
  • 3.0 Overall GPA is required for the Teacher Education Program and Indiana Licensure.
  • 3.0 Professional Education GPA is required for the Teacher Education Program and Indiana Licensure.
  • 2.5 Social Studies Content GPA is required for the Teacher Education Program and Indiana Licensure.

Course Requirements and Notes

  • ^ At least 6 hours of each of these individual areas must be at the 30000-level or above: Ancient/Medieval/Modern selective, Government and Citizenship Area selectives, Economics/Government Concentration selectives, Sociology optional concentration, Psychology optional concentration.

Non-course / Non-credit Requirements

  • EDST 20010, EDCI 20500, and EDCI 28500 are required for admission to teacher education.

College of Education Pass/No Pass Option Policy

Education majors (which includes the total credit hour requirement to fulfill General Education: Educational Studies and General Education:  Curriculum & Instruction) are not eligible to receive P/NP for required courses on your plan of study.  Only electives and courses at the 500+ level can have a grade mode change.

Spring 2020 was the only exception approved for the entire campus. 

University Requirements

University Core Requirements

For a complete listing of University Core Course Selectives, visit the Provost’s Website.
  • Human Cultures: Behavioral/Social Science (BSS)
  • Human Cultures: Humanities (HUM)
  • Information Literacy (IL)
  • Oral Communication (OC)
  • Quantitative Reasoning (QR)
  • Science #1 (SCI)
  • Science #2 (SCI)
  • Science, Technology, and Society (STS)
  • Written Communication (WC) 

Civics Literacy Proficiency Requirement

The Civics Literacy Proficiency activities are designed to develop civic knowledge of Purdue students in an effort to graduate a more informed citizenry. For more information visit the Civics Literacy Proficiency website.

Students will complete the Proficiency by passing a test of civic knowledge, and completing one of three paths:

  • Attending six approved civics-related events and completing an assessment for each; or
  • Completing 12 podcasts created by the Purdue Center for C-SPAN Scholarship and Engagement that use C-SPAN material and completing an assessment for each; or
  • Earning a passing grade for one of these approved courses (or transferring in approved AP or departmental credit in lieu of taking a course).

Upper Level Requirement

  • Resident study at Purdue University for at least two semesters and the enrollment in and completion of at least 32 semester hours of coursework required and approved for the completion of the degree. These courses are expected to be at least junior-level (30000+) courses.
  • Students should be able to fulfill most, if not all, of these credits within their major requirements; there should be a clear pathway for students to complete any credits not completed within their major.

Additional Information

  • Indiana Licensure Information - Each student must meet all degree, program, and licensure requirements prior to being recommended for licensure.

Sample 4-Year Plan

15-16 Credits

16 Credits

16 Credits

16 Credits

18 Credits

Spring 3rd Year

18 Credits

Fall 4th Year

17 Credits

12 Credits

Pre-Requisite Information

For pre-requisite information, click here.

World Language Courses

World Language proficiency requirements vary by program. The following list is inclusive of all world languages PWL offers for credit; for acceptable languages and proficiency levels, see your advisor. (ASL-American Sign Language; ARAB-Arabic; CHNS-Chinese; FR-French; GER-German; GREK-Greek(Ancient); HEBR-Hebrew(Biblical); HEBR-Hebrew(Modern); ITAL-Italian; JPNS-Japenese; KOR-Korean; LATN-Latin; PTGS=Portuguese; RUSS-Russian; SPAN-Spanish)

Critical Course

The ♦ course is considered critical.

In alignment with the Degree Map Guidance for Indiana’s Public Colleges and Universities, published by the Commission for Higher Education (pursuant to HEA 1348-2013), a Critical Course is identified as “one that a student must be able to pass to persist and succeed in a particular major.  Students who want to be nurses, for example, should know that they are expected to be proficient in courses like biology in order to be successful.  These would be identified by the institutions for each degree program”. 


The student is ultimately responsible for knowing and completing all degree requirements.

Consultation with an advisor may result in an altered plan customized for an individual student.

The myPurduePlan powered by DegreeWorks is the knowledge source for specific requirements and completion.