Social Studies Standards & Frameworks

Over the past couple of decades, different national groups and organizations have produced sets of standards and frameworks related to the teaching of social studies. Some of the more widely accepted resources are listed below:

College, Career and Civic Life (C3) Framework for Social Studies

The C3 Framework focuses on inquiry skills and key concepts of social studies. The document is intended to serve as a resource for states and local districts to consider when developing curriculum at the local level.

As a member of the Social Studies Assessment Curriculum and Instruction Collaborative of the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), Maine was invited to participate in a targeted review of the C3 Framework. In April 2013, the Maine C3 Review Team (comprised of more than 30 educators from all grade levels and all regions of the state) provided feedback on the draft document. Our in-state review process was part of a larger targeted review where over 3,000 respondents from the social studies community offered feedback on the C3 Framework. These stakeholders represented K-12 educators, university faculty, state education personnel, professional organization representatives, educational publishers and cultural organizations.

Download a copy of the C3 Framework

Social Studies (Overall)

By: The National Council for the Social Studies

National Curriculum Standards for Social Studies: A Framework for Teaching Learning, and Assessment


Civics & Government

By: The Center for Civic Education

Overall Resources

K-4 Standards

5-8 Standards

9-12 Standards


Personal Finance & Economics

By: The Council for Economic Education & National Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy

National Standards in K-12 Personal Finance Education



By: The Council for Economic Education

Voluntary National Content Standards in Economics (K-12)



By: The National Council for Geographic Education

Geography for Life: National Geography Standards



By: The National Center for History in the Schools

Historical Thinking Standards

National Standards for History for Grades K-4 - Overview

United States History Content Standards for Grades 5-12

Contents of National Standards in World History for Grades 5-12


Literacy in History/Social Studies

By: Common Core State Standards Initiative

Grades 6-8

Grades 9-10

Grades 11-12