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Making Civics Count

Friday, October 19th, 2012

Making Civics Count: Citizenship Education for a New Generation
Edited by David E. Campbell, Meira Levinson, and Frederick M. Hess
Harvard Education Press, 2012

“By nearly every measure, Americans are less engaged in their communities and political activity than generations past.” So write the editors of this volume, who survey the current practices and history of citizenship education in the United States.

They argue that the current period of “creative destruction”—when schools are closing and opening in response to reform mandates—is an ideal time to take an in-depth look at how successful strategies and programs promote civic education and good citizenship.

Making Civics Count offers research-based insights into what diverse students and teachers know and do as civic actors, and proposes a blueprint for civic education for a new generation that is both practical and visionary.

Praise

“This collection of state-of-the-art essays advances the discussion of civics from noble aspiration to empirical evidence and pedagogical practice. The authors, all noted scholars, have shown us how to improve civic education and—in the process—how to strengthen our democracy. It’s time for policymakers to pay attention.” — William A. Galston, Ezra Zilkha Chair in Governance Studies, The Brookings Institution

Making Civics Count models a brilliant alternative to the ideological polarization and paralysis that dominates civic education discourse. Campbell, Levinson, Hess, and the other contributors to this volume hail from across the political spectrum but share a critical commitment to reinvigorate dialogue around civic education. They seek not consensus but spirited engagement—with ideas, with solid empirical data, and with visions for a more robust democracy. This is an important book for scholars, policymakers, and anyone interested in civic education’s future.” — Joel Westheimer, university research chair, sociology of education, University of Ottawa

AEI