The National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) states that social studies "is the integrated study of the social sciences and humanities to promote civic competence." For students to become fully empowered participants in democracy, students must draw upon such disciplines as anthropology, archaeology, economics, geography, history, law, philosophy, political science, psychology, religion, sociology as well as content from the humanities to develop broad conceptual understandings in social studies. The primary purpose of social studies is to help young people develop the ability to make informed and reasoned decisions as citizens of a diverse democratic society in an interdependent world.
Standards Revision Process
Senate Bill 1 (2017) calls for the Kentucky Department of Education to implement a process for reviewing all academic standards and aligned assessments beginning in the 2017-18 school year. This process began for social studies in January 2018. At this time, the proposed Kentucky Academic Standards (KAS) for Social Studies are in draft form; the proposed KAS for Social Studies have additional steps in the regulatory process, and some components may change. Until new standards are adopted into law, schools are required to use the Kentucky Academic Standards (KAS)
as the basis of their curricula and instruction.
For more information on the social studies standards revision process, view the
Social Studies Standards Revision Process Critical Fact Sheet, or visit the
Social Studies Standards webpage.
2018-19 Assessment Information
Current social studies assessments will continue based on CCA 4.1 for SS in grades 5 and 8.
In the 2018-2019 school year, high school end-of-course tests will not be administered. A social studies assessment will be created once new standards are adopted. For more information on the standards revision process, visit the
social studies standards page
on the KDE website.
Note: assessment revisions will lag behind the standards revisions at least one year.
Beginning in July 2018, a student must pass, with 60% accuracy, a Civics Test composed of 100 questions in order to graduate from a public high school with a regular diploma. For more information on the Civics Test, visit the
KDE Civics Test webpage
For more information, visit the Office of Assessment and Accountability’s Assessment webpage