Reawakening the Heart of Civics Education: Activating Critical Civic Empathy and a Sense of Civic Responsibility in Undergraduate Students
Date of Award
Capstone - Open Access
Master of Education (MEd)
We are at a critical juncture in history. Our country is politically divided, and our trust in democratic institutions is wavering. As a result, there is an urgent call on higher education to rededicate themselves to their civic missions and prioritize civic learning and democratic engagement (CLDE) to develop civically minded graduates who are motivated to engage across differences to advance the public good. The Reawakening the Heart of Civics Education curriculum uses CLDE pedagogies and critical civic empathy theory to move students beyond voting and volunteering to full civic participation with an awakened sense of civic responsibility and social empathy. Six thought leaders in higher education, civic engagement, and youth development reviewed this curriculum. All six reviewers rated the curriculum favorably and would recommend this curriculum to their students and colleagues. They stated that this curriculum differentiated from other CLDE curricula due to its nuanced approach of centering students’ voices and experiences throughout the lessons. In addition, they also found the student-led civic project and intergroup dialogue components to be effective teaching strategies. This curriculum puts the heart back into civics education and moves the needle toward meaningful civic participation on college campuses.
Meadows, Meg, "Reawakening the Heart of Civics Education: Activating Critical Civic Empathy and a Sense of Civic Responsibility in Undergraduate Students" (2023). Community Engagement Student Work. 95.