Call for Proposals: 2018 Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement Meeting

Submit your proposal here by January 29, 2018.

The American Democracy Project (ADP), The Democracy Commitment (TDC), and NASPA Lead Initiative are committed to advancing the civic engagement movement in higher education. During this year’s Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement (#CLDE18) Meeting in Anaheim, Ca. from June 6-9, 2018, our goal is to bring together our collective networks of faculty, student affairs professionals, senior campus administrators, students, and community partners to advance our work to ensure that students graduate from our colleges and universities–both public and private–prepared to be the informed, engaged citizens that our communities and our democracy need.

When submitting a proposal for this year’s convening the conference committee asks you to consider how to answer the four questions proposed in our emergent theory of change and how these threads and tags intersect with your work whether it be around assessment, political engagement, community partnerships, service-learning, dialogue and deliberation, and so forth.

This meeting is designed around our emergent theory of change which poses four important questions:

  1. Purpose: What are the key features of the thriving democracy we aspire to enact and support through our work?
  2. Learning Outcomes: What knowledge, skills, and dispositions do people need in order to help create and contribute to a thriving democracy?
  3. Pedagogy: How can we best foster the acquisition and development of the knowledge, skills, and dispositions necessary for a thriving democracy?
  4. Strategy: How can we build the institutional culture, infrastructure, and relationships needed to support learning that enables a thriving democracy?

The theory of change also suggests that campuses consider how best to construct campus cultures and contexts that foster:

  • Civic Ethos of campus: The infusion of democratic values into the customs and habits of everyday practices, structures, and interactions; the defining character of the institution and those in it that emphasizes open-mindedness, civility, the worth of each person, ethical behaviors, and concern for the well-being of others; a spirit of public-mindedness that influences the goals of the institution and its engagement with local and global communities.
  • Civic Literacy & Skill Building as a goal for every student: The cultivation of foundational knowledge about fundamental principles and debates about democracy expressed over time, both within the United States and in other countries; familiarity with several key historical struggles, campaigns, and social movements undertaken to achieve the full promise of democracy; the ability to think critically about complex issues and to seek and evaluate information about issues that have public consequences.
  • Civic Inquiry integrated within the majors and general education: The practice of inquiring about the civic dimensions and public consequences of a subject of study; the exploration of the impact of choices on different constituencies and entities, including the planet; the deliberate consideration of differing points of views; the ability to describe and analyze civic intellectual debates within one’s major or areas of study.
  • Civic Action as lifelong practice: The capacity and commitment both to participate constructively with diverse others and to work collectively to address common problems; the practice of working in a pluralistic society and world to improve the quality of people’s lives and the sustainability of the planet; the ability to analyze systems in order to plan and engage in public action; the moral and political courage to take risks to achieve a greater public good.
  • Civic Agency involves the capacities of citizens to work collaboratively across differences like partisan ideology, faith traditions, income, geography, race, and ethnicity to address common challenges, solve problems and create common ground; requires a set of individual skills, knowledge, and predispositions; also involves questions of institutional design, particularly how to constitute groups and institutions for sustainable collective action.

More details about the meeting can be found here: 2018 Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement (CLDE) Meeting.

Submit your Program Proposal by Jan. 29, 2018 by visiting here: 2018 Civic Learning & Democratic Engagement (CLDE) Meeting and learn more about the #CLDE18 Meeting at the official meeting website. Registration will open in November 2017.

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