Social Studies Learning Standards & Graduation Requirements
The Social Studies K-12 Learning Standards, adopted September 17, 2019, consist of Essential Academic Learning Requirements (EALRs) and Grade Level Expectations (GLEs) that describe what students should know and be able to do in social studies skills, civics, economics, geography, and history.
Students who are equipped with skills of authentic inquiry and who know geography, civics, economics, and history can move forward with the confidence that they are prepared to engage with the world. The goal of the Learning Standards is to help teachers and local districts design the scope and sequence of their social studies programs.
- K-12 Social Studies Learning Standards (Revised 2019)
- Social Studies Learning Standards - Editable Version
- Attribution Instructions for Edited Version of Standards
If this work is adapted, note the substantive changes and re-title, removing any Washington Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction logos. Provide the following attribution somewhere in your document where it makes sense:
- “This resource was adapted from original materials developed by the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction. These learning standards are only applicable to Washington schools in the original version of this document accessed from the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction - Social Studies Department website.”
If you are just cutting and pasting portions of the document, please provide the following attribution somewhere in your document where it makes sense:
- "The Washington Social Studies Learning Standards by the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction are available under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License."
Learning Standards by Grade Band
- Standards Grades K–5
- Standards Grades 6–8
- Standards Grades 9–12
Scope & Sequence
The revised Scope and Sequence includes references to the OSPI-Developed Assessments, or CBAs, for Social Studies. While we are working on updated versions, please be aware that they are still aligned with the previous standards document.
Social Studies Graduation Requirements
Graduation requirement rules (WAC 180-51-067, WAC 180-51-068, and WAC 180-51-210) require three credits of social studies for graduation. The requirement includes:
- one (1) credit of US History;
- one-half (.5) credit of Contemporary World History, Geography and Problems (often referred to as Contemporary World Problems or CWP);
- one-half (.5) credit of Civics; and
- one (1) credit of social studies elective.
The State Board of Education reduced the required credits in CWP from one credit to one-half credits and increased the social studies elective from one-half to one credit (new and amended rules were adopted at the November 2019 Board meeting, going into effect immediately). The purpose for this change was to provide districts with greater flexibility in meeting social studies requirements, including the civics requirement. It is recommended that one-half credits of a social studies elective remain in world history, to best align with the learning standards. Districts that wish to keep CWP as a one credit course may do so.
For additional information, visit the Graduation Requirements page.