History/Social Studies

The History/Social Studies Department at Loyola Blakefield endorses Loyola’s mission of intellectual competence by challenging its students to master historical content, develop social studies skills, and hone their analytical abilities.

To attain our academic objective, an intellectual agility, we insist upon an accurate grasping of the facts: dates, people, and the sequence of events in both a linear and a kaleidoscopic perspective. All students are expected to be able to trace main historical movements and to be familiar with the most outstanding personalities. Our pedagogical aim, to develop habits of the mind, is fulfilled by working toward an understanding of the relationship of causes and effects, by viewing the sweep of historical trends, by realizing how events of the past have had their effects upon the present, by broadening our understanding of current history through analogies with past history, and by recognizing that a knowledge of history empowers students in the present.

The Department believes that this approach, practiced in all Department courses, helps lay the foundation of knowledge and understanding that is necessary for future study in the Social Studies as well as fosters a deeper understanding of the roles, history, culture, economics, politics and religion play in today’s world.

Available Courses

Items with (*) are electives

History and Social Sciences

Ancient Civilizations 06

This course is designed to begin the process of learning a method of historical study. Through a variety of activities, including projects and field trips, students will learn how civilization developed and expanded. Concepts in geography, history, anthropology and other social sciences will be used to study civilizations of Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas. Current events are also addressed in this course.

Themes in American History

This course examines the individuals, ideas, and events that have shaped the history of the United States. Special emphasis is given to the development, structure, and operation of the federal government and to the duties of responsible citizenship. The course also strives to help students gain a knowledge and appreciation of how American history relates to present day issues.

Geography 08

The course is designed to promote global awareness. Through a variety of activities, including individual projects, students will examine the geographic, political, economic and social differences which characterize the global family of nations. Students will develop an understanding of the impact of physical features on societal development. A special emphasis is placed on the development of map skills. Field trips may be used, when appropriate, to supplement the overall curriculum of the course.

Available Courses

Items with (*) are electives


World History

Designed as an introduction to the Social Studies, this freshmen course focuses on key social studies skills as well as introducing the key threads that define major civilizations around the world. This course acquaints students with the significant events of the civilization, east and west, from the origins of human civilization through the twentieth century. Particular attention will be paid to the world since 1945 and contemporary events and problems that afflict regions around the world. This survey course gives students an appreciation for the political, social and economic conditions that have shaped the modern world and the importance of the interrelationships of human societies.

United States History

This course provides the student with a chronological survey of the events, individuals and ideas which combined to shape the American nation. A special emphasis is given both to an analysis of the development of a common American identity and to an examination of the unique social, political and economic factors which transformed the United States from a small British colony to its current role as a leader in the family of nations. The scope of this course is from the Era of Exploration to the end of World War II.

United States History Honors

This course uses the survey of American History as the tool to reinforce historical skills and perspective. There is a heavy emphasis on critical reading, critical writing, research and inquiry, and other skills which are building blocks to success both in high school and college. Designed to transcend mere factual information, the course will choose specific elements of American heritage and explore them in depth. The scope of this course will be from the Era of Exploration through the end of the Cold War.

AP United States History

As an accredited Advanced Placement course, this offering provides students with a college- level freshman survey of US history from the era of exploration through the conclusion of the Cold War. It is designed to prepare students to sit for the College Advanced Placement United States History examination, given each May. The course utilizes a college level text and frequent use of primary historical documents. It focuses on the skills of critical reading, argumentative reasoning and writing, and historiography. Homework and writing projects are commensurate with the Department's expectations of the capabilities of the A.P. student.

AP European History

Advanced Placement European History is a course which students in the 12th grade may elect. This elective course is based upon concepts introduced in previous courses and it requires intensive text and non-text reading. The ability to examine historical evidence and present clear analyses is further developed. Students who elect to take this course are expected to sit for the Advanced Placement Examination in European History.

The American Civil War

This senior elective course covers the Civil War from the first shots at Fort Sumter in 1861 through the surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia at Appomattox Courthouse in 1865. While social and political aspects of the war will be covered, the major focus of the course is military history.

World War II

The World War II course investigates the causes of, major events within, and short-term, as well as long-term consequences of the most globally destructive war in human history. The course begins with the immediate aftermath of World War I and it’s role in creating the conditions in which both Germany and Japan became susceptible to dictatorial regimes, advocating aggressive expansionist foreign policies.Examining the major military campaigns of both the European and Pacific theatres of war, the course then concludes with the fall of Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan, the rise of the post-war “Superpowers”, and the birth of the Cold War.

Native American History

This course focuses upon five themes: Pre-European contact, colonial interactions, American westward expansion and Indian removal, the Indian Wars, and the modern world of the Native American. Additionally, there are opportunities for students to work on understanding and improving the lives of the contemporary Native American through interactive projects.

The Ancient Mediterranean World

This course surveys the major civilizations of Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece and Italy from the dawn of the city around 3000 BC through the collapse of the Western Roman Empire in the fifth century AD. Beyond providing a basic historical framework, the course explores the surprising ways in which the various peoples of the area influenced one another culturally – including Egyptians, Babylonians, Hittites, Hebrews, Persians, Greeks and Romans. Students will also learn about the different types of evidence, both literary and archaeological, on which knowledge of the ancient world is based. Lastly, students will also learn about the birth and rise of Christianity and how it impacted the Mediterranean World.

Government and Politics

AP United States Government and Politics

Advanced Placement Government and Politics is a course open to students who wish to examine closely the structure and operation of the American political system within the context of current events. The course requires intensive text and non-text reading, including the morning paper, classroom blogs, and other on-line and digital classroom resources. Students who elect the course are expected to sit for the College Board Advanced Placement examinations. Homework and writing assignments are commensurate with the Department’s expectations of students taking Advanced Placement courses.

AP Comparative Government and Politics

Comparative Politics introduces the students to the diverse world of political cultures and political institutions. The course examines fundamental political concepts and global issues in a comparative context. Students will analyze, compare, and contrast the political systems of six core countries: Great Britain, Russia, China, Mexico, Nigeria, and Iran. The course is designed to prepare the students for the AP Comparative Politics exam.

American Experience in Government and Recent Issues

American Experience is designed to familiarize students with the structure and function of the American government and with the social, economic and political issues which have shaped contemporary America since the end of the Second World War. Topics include the evolution of the Cold War, the Civil Rights Movement, the Korean, Vietnam and Gulf Wars, Watergate, Iran-Contra, and America since the end of the Cold War. The objectives of the course are to assist the student in analyzing his political system in a Constitutional and historical context, and to examine how recent events and developments have inexorably altered the structure of the American Experience.


Introduction to Psychology

This course introduces students to the systematic and scientific study of behavior and mental processes through a review of the major subfields within psychology. These include the history of psychology, research methodology, perception, consciousness, learning, developmental psychology, personality, abnormal psychology, and social psychology. Students will complete reading assignments (text and other handouts), written assignments (including book reports, research paper, etc.), and participate in class discussions.



Department Chair

Michael J. DelGaudio
B.A., Boston College; M.M.S., Loyola University Maryland



 G. Caldwell (2011)
B.A., Xavier University

John W. Crawford
B.A., Johns Hopkins University; M.A., Georgetown University

Daniel M. Hoehler
B.A., John Carroll University; M.A., The University of Mississippi

Stephen M. James
B.A., Loyola University Maryland

James A. Katchko
B.A., Kings College; B.M. and M.M., Johns Hopkins University

Michael T. Keeney, II
(2012) B.A., Loyola University Maryland

Reagan Koffel
B.A., Georgetown University; M.A., Loyola University Maryland

Terry Levering (20  )


Sam Manelski


Brennan Prodey
(20  )


Walter Pyzik (2014)


Steven F. Truitt
B.S., Franklin and Marshall College; M.A., Loyola University Maryland