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Featured event: The fate of civic education in a connected world

Tuesday, November 15th, 2011

On Monday, December 5, Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society is hosting a panel to talk about “The Face of Civic Education in a Connected World.” The questions, below, promise a stimulating discussion:

  • What’s the problem? Doesn’t everyone agree that civic education is important? Is civic education being squeezed out in schools, either because of the demands of subject testing or the desire to avoid political controversy?
  • Does the connectedness of social media support or impair the sorts of connections that lead to active citizenship?
  • Every tertiary institution wants to be a “global university.” What, if any, are the civic responsibilities of a global institution? What civic values are transnational? Should American students learn the Universal Declaration of Human Rights?
  • What about civic education outside of school?
  • Does civic education include instruction in civic activism?
  • With connectedness come instantaneity and constant interruptions. Is it even possible to maintain anyone’s attention on understanding anything as subtle as the complexities of representative government?

The event also draws attention to Teaching America: The Case for Civic Education, which we have discussed before, and one of the panel’s participants–CIRCLE‘s Peter Levine–should also be familiar to followers of the Program. If you’re in the Boston area, we encourage you to attend the discussion–and tell us how it is!