The Social Science Teaching program has existed in its present form for over a decade, since the state of Illinois transformed the way it licenses high school social studies teachers to the present form where all social studies teachers become licensed to teach all social science subjects. In 2000, the state of Illinois mandated that by 2004 all licensure in the Social Sciences comprise all social science disciplines: Economics, Geography, History, Political Science, Psychology, and Sociology-Anthropology. ALL social science teaching majors, no matter their history or degree program, take a core set of courses that cover these disciplines, and then they specialize in one particular area:
- History with Teacher Licensure
- Social Science Studies—Geography
- Social Science Studies—Political Science
- Social Science Studies—Psychology
- Social Science Studies—Sociology-Anthropology
Graduates meet licensure requirements to teach all social science courses as well as to teach honors and AP courses in their area of specialization.
The cross-disciplinary History with Teacher Licensure and Social Science Studies programs are closely linked to all its academic departments. Until 1961, when it became a separate department, History was part of the collective Social Science department here at EIU, with its strong emphasis on preparing secondary teachers. In 1971, Social Science with Teacher Licensure separated from History, though the coordinator of the inter-disciplinary Social Science BA/BS is in the History Department. The separate programs share a Teaching Methods course (SOS 3400) that is taught by a History professor.