Active democratic citizenship and service-learning in the postgraduate classroom

Harris, C. (2010) Active democratic citizenship and service-learning in the postgraduate classroom. Journal of Political Science Education, 6 (3). pp. 227-243. ISSN 15512169 (ISSN)

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Abstract

This article investigates the use of service-learning in teaching active democratic citizenship in the postgraduate classroom. In particular it draws on a case study of an MBS Government module (GV6104) entitled Political Participation and Mobilisation that explores the relationship between democracy and participation. Students of this module are trained in the nonpartisan, internationally respected Vincentian Partnership for Social Justice (VSPJ) voter education/active citizenship program and have delivered it to Irish and foreign nationals in community settings in advance of the 2009 European Parliament and Local Government elections. In order to critically evaluate the project this article investigates service-learning as a pedagogy reviewing the literature on the relationship between it and civic education and explores service-learning best practice. It evaluates the performance of the University College Cork (UCC) project against service-learning standards of best practice using data from the students' assessment of their servicelearning experience gathered from a survey; an analysis of their learning journals; and feedback from the community partners. It finds that the students overwhelmingly agree that the service-learning experience contributed to their civic education and recognizes the need for further scholarly work in an Irish context to ascertain the merits of this pedagogy and to mainstream it in Irish higher education. Copyright © 2010 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Cited By :5; Export Date: 23 February 2015; Correspondence Address: Harris, C.; Department of Government, University College Cork, O'Rahilly Building, Cork, Ireland; email: clodagh.harris@ucc.ie; References: Barber, B.R., Battistoni, R.M., A Season of Service: Introducing Service Learning into the Liberal Arts Curriculum (1993) PS Political Science and Politics, 26, pp. 235-240. , June; Battistoni, R.M., Service Learning and Democratic Citizenship (1997) Theory into Practice, 36, pp. 150-156. , Summer; Beetham, D., Bracking, S., Kearton, I., Weir, S., (2002) International IDEA Handbook on Democracy Assessment, , The Hague: Kluwer Law International; Boyer, E.L., The Scholarship of Engagement (1996) Journal of Public Service & Outreach, 1 (1), pp. 11-20; Carver, R.L., Theoretical Underpinnings of Service Learning (1997) Theory into Practice, 36, pp. 143-149. , Summer; Casey, D., Murphy, K., van der Putten, D., Service Learning a Tool for Promoting Cultural Sensitivity and Civic Engagement (2009) Campus Engage conference, , Presented at the, Dublin; Dale, T., Elliot, J.M., Scourfield, M.J., Civic Engagement II (2007) PS Political Science and Politics, 40, pp. 584-586. , July; Dewey, J., (1963) Liberalism and Social Action, , New York: Capricorn books; Doorley, M., Service Learning's Challenge to the Educator (2007) Higher Education and Civic Engagement: International Perspectives, pp. 131-142. , In, eds. 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(2007) The International Journal of Diversity in Organisations, Communities & Nations, 7 (1), pp. 187-198; Harris, C., (2005) Engaging Citizens, The Case for Democratic Renewal in Ireland-The Report of the Democracy Commission, , ed, Dublin: TASC at New Island; Harris, C., The Irish Taskforce on Active Citizenship-The CLEAR analysis (2008) Representation, 44, pp. 15-26. , April; Harris, C., McIlrath, L., The Active Citizenship Approach to Teaching and Learning Active Citizenship (2008) Annual meeting of the Political Science Association of Ireland, , Presented at the, Galway; Honohan, I., Active Citizenship in Contemporary Democracy (2005) Engaging Citizens, The Case for Democratic Renewal in Ireland-The Report of the Democracy Commission, pp. 169-180. , In, ed. Clodagh Harris. 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Lorraine McIlrath and Iain MacLabhrainn. Aldershot: Ashgate
Uncontrolled Keywords: Active citizenship; Civic education; Community partnership; Servicelearning
Depositing User: National Forum
Date Deposited: 03 Dec 2015 17:06
Last Modified: 03 Dec 2015 17:07
URI: http://eprints.teachingandlearning.ie/id/eprint/2435

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