All Academic, Inc. Research Logo

Info/CitationFAQResearchAll Academic Inc.
Document

Political Participation Exercises as a Means to Teach Civic Skills, Engage Students and Recruit Majors
Unformatted Document Text:  more effective for the majors in terms of teaching political science knowledge and political participation skills. 1 If we’re taking the politics out of the learning as many assignments do (Saltmarsh 2005; Waggener 2006), then we may be getting the students interested in community life, but we’re not necessarily engaging them in politics or political science. As Galston (2000) argues, it might even be that students see their community engagement as an alternative to political involvement. On the other hand, we might find that an assignment that offers time for reflection and places emphasis on the political elements of the assignment might lead to more civic learning. This, in turn, might also help to engage non-majors in political science and, therefore, help to recruit majors. While little has been written about the recruitment of non-majors into the discipline of political science, the common consensus appears to be that students are more likely to switch majors if they find the courses to be engaging and they are able to connect the material to the real world (www.asanet.org). While many students choose to major in political science because of their long-term career aspirations (as in law school, for example) it appears to be more acceptable for students to select a major based on interest rather than long-term career objectives. With this in mind, we posit that a well-designed political participation exercise will help recruit majors because it will allow the recruits to discover political science as an interesting and lively discipline with strong real-world connections. 2 We turn now to our own political participation assignments. As discussed previously, we did not ask our students to engage in traditional service learning, but rather asked them to 1 See Jefferies (2007 APSA Teaching & Learning Conference) for a literature review on the connections between student interest and knowledge retention. 2 This might parallel Schatzinger and Levey’s discussion at the 2007 APSA Teaching & Learning Conference regarding the importance of intrinsic motivation. 9

Authors: Lupo, Lindsey. and Griffin, Rebecca Brandy.
first   previous   Page 9 of 27   next   last



background image
more effective for the majors in terms of teaching political science knowledge and political
participation skills.
If we’re taking the politics out of the learning as many assignments do (Saltmarsh 2005;
Waggener 2006), then we may be getting the students interested in community life, but we’re not
necessarily engaging them in politics or political science. As Galston (2000) argues, it might
even be that students see their community engagement as an alternative to political involvement.
On the other hand, we might find that an assignment that offers time for reflection and places
emphasis on the political elements of the assignment might lead to more civic learning. This, in
turn, might also help to engage non-majors in political science and, therefore, help to recruit
majors.
While little has been written about the recruitment of non-majors into the discipline of
political science, the common consensus appears to be that students are more likely to switch
majors if they find the courses to be engaging and they are able to connect the material to the real
world (www.asanet.org). While many students choose to major in political science because of
their long-term career aspirations (as in law school, for example) it appears to be more
acceptable for students to select a major based on interest rather than long-term career objectives.
With this in mind, we posit that a well-designed political participation exercise will help recruit
majors because it will allow the recruits to discover political science as an interesting and lively
discipline with strong real-world connections.
We turn now to our own political participation assignments. As discussed previously, we
did not ask our students to engage in traditional service learning, but rather asked them to
1
See Jefferies (2007 APSA Teaching & Learning Conference) for a literature review on the connections between
student interest and knowledge retention.
2
This might parallel Schatzinger and Levey’s discussion at the 2007 APSA Teaching & Learning Conference
regarding the importance of intrinsic motivation.
9


Convention
All Academic Convention makes running your annual conference simple and cost effective. It is your online solution for abstract management, peer review, and scheduling for your annual meeting or convention.
Submission - Custom fields, multiple submission types, tracks, audio visual, multiple upload formats, automatic conversion to pdf.
Review - Peer Review, Bulk reviewer assignment, bulk emails, ranking, z-score statistics, and multiple worksheets!
Reports - Many standard and custom reports generated while you wait. Print programs with participant indexes, event grids, and more!
Scheduling - Flexible and convenient grid scheduling within rooms and buildings. Conflict checking and advanced filtering.
Communication - Bulk email tools to help your administrators send reminders and responses. Use form letters, a message center, and much more!
Management - Search tools, duplicate people management, editing tools, submission transfers, many tools to manage a variety of conference management headaches!
Click here for more information.

first   previous   Page 9 of 27   next   last

©2012 All Academic, Inc.