All Academic, Inc. Research Logo

Info/CitationFAQResearchAll Academic Inc.
Document

Reacting to the Past: Extended Simulations and the Learning Experience in Political Science
Unformatted Document Text:  Reacting to the Past: Extended Simulations and the Learning Experience in Political Science Surveys of entering college freshmen indicate that there is more interest in politics today then has been the case in the recent past. Incoming students report the highest levels of discussion of politics in high school in decades, increasing ideological identification, and increased commit- ment to community service (Pryor et al. 2006). When I took responsibility for a freshman semi- nar in LaGrange College’s multidisciplinary core program, I decided to use this new interest in politics to fulfill the course objectives of stimulating critical thinking and reading, developing research and presentation skills, and increasing awareness of other cultures. To meet this chal- lenge, I designed a course based on simulations using Reacting to the Past games. 1 Simulations have long been recommended as a tool for promoting active learning, stimulating student partici- pation, and spurring interest in political science courses (Walcott 1980). They have been devel- oped for a variety of political science subjects in recent years (see, for example, Shellman 2001, or Franke 2006). Further, there is empirical evidence that the use of simulations both stimulates learning and substantially increases student involvement (Pappas and Peaden 2004, Galatas 2006). I reasoned that a experiential learning course substantially different from those students had taken in high school and based on examining the perennial political problems underlying contemporary events would be the best path to chose. This article describes the course I developed and the simulation methods at its center. I will describe the way the games were used in my freshman seminar, pointing out some of the differ- ences and similarities between Reacting games and other simulations. Finally, I will present some results from a comparison of the course with other freshman seminars that bear out the ex- pectations I had for the pedagogy. 1

Authors: Lightcap, Tracy.
first   previous   Page 1 of 21   next   last



background image
Reacting to the Past: Extended Simulations and
the Learning Experience in Political Science
Surveys of entering college freshmen indicate that there is more interest in politics today then
has been the case in the recent past. Incoming students report the highest levels of discussion of
politics in high school in decades, increasing ideological identification, and increased commit-
ment to community service (Pryor et al. 2006). When I took responsibility for a freshman semi-
nar in LaGrange College’s multidisciplinary core program, I decided to use this new interest in
politics to fulfill the course objectives of stimulating critical thinking and reading, developing
research and presentation skills, and increasing awareness of other cultures. To meet this chal-
lenge, I designed a course based on simulations using Reacting to the Past games.
1
Simulations
have long been recommended as a tool for promoting active learning, stimulating student partici-
pation, and spurring interest in political science courses (Walcott 1980). They have been devel-
oped for a variety of political science subjects in recent years (see, for example, Shellman 2001,
or Franke 2006). Further, there is empirical evidence that the use of simulations both stimulates
learning and substantially increases student involvement (Pappas and Peaden 2004, Galatas
2006). I reasoned that a experiential learning course substantially different from those students
had taken in high school and based on examining the perennial political problems underlying
contemporary events would be the best path to chose.
This article describes the course I developed and the simulation methods at its center. I will
describe the way the games were used in my freshman seminar, pointing out some of the differ-
ences and similarities between Reacting games and other simulations. Finally, I will present
some results from a comparison of the course with other freshman seminars that bear out the ex-
pectations I had for the pedagogy.
1


Convention
Convention is an application service for managing large or small academic conferences, annual meetings, and other types of events!
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 1 of 21   next   last

©2012 All Academic, Inc.