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2.2.2 The Inquiry Arc in the College, Career, and Civic Life Framework for Social Studies Standards

The College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Framework for Social Studies Standards, (C3 Framework) was published by the National Council for the Social Studies in 2013. The framework aims to strengthen the teaching of the core social studies disciplines (civics, economics, geography, and history), and it provides a useful resource to educators implementing the CCSS in these disciplines. The framework also promotes redesigning history/social studies instruction around an inquiry arc that emphasizes using questions to guide instruction.

The C3 Framework is centered on an Inquiry Arc-a set of interlocking and mutually supportive ideas that frame the ways students learn social studies content. By focusing on inquiry, the framework emphasizes the disciplinary concepts and practices that support students as they develop the capacity to know, analyze, explain, and argue about interdisciplinary challenges in our social world" (p.6 ).

The C3 Framework's Inquiry Arc is divided down into "four dimensions for informed inquiry in the social studies: 1) Developing questions and planning inquiries; 2) Applying disciplinary concepts and tools; 3) Evaluating sources and using evidence; and 4) Communicating conclusions and taking informed action" (p.17).

Central to a rich social studies experience is the capability for developing questions that can frame and advance an inquiry (p. 23).

C3 Framework, 2013