Teaching Political Science at a Community College: Resource Set One

Course Design

Community College Professors Helen Chang (Hostos Community College CUNY), LaTasha DeHaan (Elgin Community College), Terry Gilmour (Midland College), Verónica Reyna (Houston Community College) and Christina Sciabarra (Bellevue College) utilized the symposium to produce artifacts that explored course design and re-design from a variety of important pedagogical angles: undergraduate research, community engagement, inclusive learning, and culturally responsive education. All of the projects each of these dynamic professors engaged in focused on student engagement and empowerment.

Course Design Resource #1

The Importance of Undergraduate Research at Community Colleges

Terry Gilmour, Government/Political Science Professor and Director of the Honors Program at Midland College, has provided students with opportunities to conduct undergraduate research, to present their findings in a research symposium and to publish their work. Continue reading here.


Course Design Resource #2

Community Mapping Assignment

Helen Chang, Hostos Community College (CUNY), has implemented a Community Mapping assignment that is used to assess Civic Engagement as a student learning outcome (SLO) in her American Government course. This assignment and assessment project was inspired by the work of William Ball (2009), who used GIS in a neighborhood analysis project and Chang’s CUNY Mellon Transformative Learning in the Humanities Initiative public knowledge project on community mapping.

Course Design Resource #3

Christina Sciabarra, Bellevue College, redesigned her course in American Government to be more culturally responsive.


Course Design Resource #4

Breaking Down the Principles of Political Science

LaTasha DeHaan utilized the syllabus review guide created by the University of Southern California’s Center for Urban Education. The syllabus review guide asks instructors to deconstruct their syllabi in order to assess areas where they can demystify policies and procedures, be welcoming in their approach, validate students and their potential for success, create partnerships with students and lastly represent the value that lies in considering a diversity of backgrounds, experiences and approaches in our teaching methods, student activities and course materials.

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