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The Lived Experience of Political Engagement

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Abstract:

The paper presents the findings from a study of students’ “lived experiences” in the political science course “Democracy and Education” and practicum “Coaching Public Achievement.” The study uses qualitative methods to better analyze the complexities of students’ experiences and the learning that occurs through experience. This paper has two distinct goals. The first goal is to describe course and practicum as well as a potential model for instructors who wish to incorporate similar pedagogies and practical experiences into their courses. The second goal is to understand the nature of students’ experiences, what these experiences mean, how they learn through experience, and whether this course fosters political engagement. Based on narratives from in-depth interviews and student journals, this interpretive study aims at what Geertz (1971) calls thick description. While not a causal analysis, the study seeks to document learning and personal change through the critical analysis of detailed narratives. I highlight how students indeed have profound learning experiences in the course and practicum. The experience “de-centers” students, provoking reflexive thought about their role in the program, young people and the nature of political action. Many describe how they have learned important inter-personal and political skills which they “tried out” in other domains of their lives. However, while some students offer stories of personal change, it is unclear at this point they are more politically engaged as a result of the course.

Most Common Document Word Stems:

student (149), polit (132), experi (93), learn (90), like (75), coach (62), work (55), class (52), public (51), cours (51), interview (50), think (48), democrat (44), educ (41), engag (41), peopl (41), group (40), live (38), hildreth (38), practic (37), chang (36),

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Civic Engagement, Service Learning, Democratic Classroom
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Name: American Political Science Association
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MLA Citation:

Hildreth, Roudy. "The Lived Experience of Political Engagement" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Political Science Association, Philadelphia Marriott Hotel, Philadelphia, PA, Aug 27, 2003 <Not Available>. 2009-05-26 <http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p63942_index.html>

APA Citation:

Hildreth, R. , 2003-08-27 "The Lived Experience of Political Engagement" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Political Science Association, Philadelphia Marriott Hotel, Philadelphia, PA Online <.PDF>. 2009-05-26 from http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p63942_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: The paper presents the findings from a study of students’ “lived experiences” in the political science course “Democracy and Education” and practicum “Coaching Public Achievement.” The study uses qualitative methods to better analyze the complexities of students’ experiences and the learning that occurs through experience. This paper has two distinct goals. The first goal is to describe course and practicum as well as a potential model for instructors who wish to incorporate similar pedagogies and practical experiences into their courses. The second goal is to understand the nature of students’ experiences, what these experiences mean, how they learn through experience, and whether this course fosters political engagement. Based on narratives from in-depth interviews and student journals, this interpretive study aims at what Geertz (1971) calls thick description. While not a causal analysis, the study seeks to document learning and personal change through the critical analysis of detailed narratives. I highlight how students indeed have profound learning experiences in the course and practicum. The experience “de-centers” students, provoking reflexive thought about their role in the program, young people and the nature of political action. Many describe how they have learned important inter-personal and political skills which they “tried out” in other domains of their lives. However, while some students offer stories of personal change, it is unclear at this point they are more politically engaged as a result of the course.

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Associated Document Available American Political Science Association
Associated Document Available Political Research Online

Document Type: .PDF
Page count: 35
Word count: 11049
Text sample:
THE “LIVED EXPERIENCE” OF POLITICAL ENGAGEMENT R.W. Hildreth Ph.D. (cand.) Department of Political Science University of Minnesota 1414 Social Science Building Minneapolis MN 55455 hildreth@polisci.umn.edu Prepared for delivery at the 2003 Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association August 28 - August 31 2003. Copyright by the American Political Science Association. I don’t like Public Achievement. I think it’s another way to indoctrinate kids and to trick them into thinking they have a lot of power when in
York : Basic Books. Stewart David and Algis Mickunas. 1990 [1974]. Exploring Phenomenology: A Guide to the Field and Its Literature. Athens Oh.: Ohio University Press. Hildreth 33 Strauss Anselm and Juliet Corbin. 1990. Basics of Qualitative Research: Grounded Theory Procedures and Techniques. Newbury Park CA: Sage. Van Manen Max.1990. Researching Lived Experience: Human Science for an Action Sensitive Pedagogy. Albany: State University of New York Press. Waterman Alan S. ed. 1997. Service-Learning: Applications from the Research. London: Lawrence


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