North Carolina Civics and Economics offers a tightly focused and scaffolded curriculum that uses the perspective of political institutions to explore the history, organization, and functions of the U.S. government and provides an introduction to key economic principles. The first semester begins with basic theories of government, moving to the Declaration of Independence, and continuing to the present day, the course explores the relationship between individual Americans and the governing bodies. It covers the political culture of the country and gains insight into the challenges faced by presidents, congressional representatives, and other political activists. It also covers the roles of political parties, interest groups, the media, and the Supreme Court.
The second semester covers fundamental properties of economics, including an examination of markets from both historical and current perspectives; the basics of supply and demand; the theories of early economic philosophers such as Adam Smith and David Ricardo; theories of value; the concept of money and how it evolved; the role of banks, investment houses, and the Federal Reserve; Keynesian economics; the productivity, wages, investment, and growth involved in capitalism; unemployment, inflations, and the national debt; and a survey of markets in areas such as China, Europe, and the Middle East.
North Carolina Civics and Economics is designed to fall in the fourth year of social studies instruction. Students perfect their analytic writing through a scaffolded series of analytic assignments and written lesson tests. They also apply basic mathematics to economic concepts. Students read selections from annotated primary documents and apply those readings to the course content.
The content is based on standards from the College, Career, and Civil Life (C3) Framework for Social Studies State Standards (2013), the National Council for History Education (1997), the National Center for History in the Schools (1996), and the National Council for Social Studies (1994) and is aligned to North Carolina state standards.