Social Sciences Division
The Social Sciences Division endeavors to foster student learning and success in each of its disciplines. The division is devoted to applying and teaching the methods and ethics of research.
Student Learning Outcomes
After successful completion of social science courses, students should have experienced academic achievement and developed:
- the ability to apply empirical evidence in the analysis of important problems, themes, and issues in the social sciences.
- recognition of diverse cultural perspectives in our increasingly global community.
- critical thinking skills, especially with reference to evaluating source materials and drawing reasoned conclusions from those materials.
- proficiency in transmitting knowledge through effective oral and written communications within the context of the social science disciplines.
Description of Disciplines
Each of the social science disciplines are aimed at understanding human behavior, whether it be through an analysis of the artifacts and remains left by a past civilization or through the exploration of how the biological and chemical workings of the mind interact with environmental conditions to shape personality. The Social Sciences Division at National Park Community College offers college-level courses in the following disciplines:
Anthropology is at the heart of the social sciences as it generates fundamental research about the human condition through time. Anthropology is the study of human development, particularly the development of human physical characteristics, culture, social interactions, and communication through analysis of the artifacts and remains of past cultures as well as through the observations of current cultures.
Geography studies the physical and environmental characteristics of the planet and how those characteristics in turn shape human development. For example, a clear understanding of geography leads to correlations between the physical features of any given place, the weather conditions of that place, and the distributions of plants, animals, and humans in that place.
History is about what it means to be human in an ever-changing context. Studying the problems and/or solutions of past individuals, nations, and cultures provides some insight into the current human condition.
Political Science is the study of how humanity governs itself through the development of political institutions, governmental structures, and policy making. This field focuses on the history and theory behind these political systems as well as human interaction with these systems. A particular emphasis is placed on national, state and local government in the United States.
Psychology is the science of human behavior and mental processes. Some psychologists conduct basic research to gather information, and others apply that information to solve practical problems. Psychologists examine both normal and abnormal facets of the human condition. They study how humans grow and change across a lifespan, how humans are shaped by genetic inheritance and environmental experiences, and how humans influence and are influenced by others.
Sociology is the scientific study of social groups and how they change over time. Sociologists examine the relationship between individuals and the society in which they live. Culture, socialization, deviance, social problems, education, social inequality, and family are studied.
In addition to general education courses in the social sciences, an A.A.S. degree in Criminal Justice and a Certificate of Proficiency in Homeland Security/Emergency Management are offered.
Pictured left to right: Dr. Chuck Argo, Carol Stonecipher, Dr. Wade Derden, Stephanie Coke, Dawn Marshall, and Martin White.