Learning through Research
Our goal is to make CCCE a fully integrated learning and research center. This means that students and faculty take questions and ideas from the classroom into the research environment. And when these projects come to fruition, the newly created knowledge is returned to the classroom, and to the larger scholarly community through this web site and in publications.
This process is based on working teams of undergraduates, graduate students and faculty. Students are full participants in research projects that generate multi-media information archives which then become resources for existing classes and for new course development in the social sciences.
Some students receive academic credit for their work. In addition, they may be employed as research assistants on funded projects. Others receive prestigious university support such as Mary Gates Undergraduate Fellowships. And, most importantly, they are involved in every step of the process of creating new knowledge, from asking original questions in the classroom, to joining an appropriate project at CCCE, to gathering and analyzing data, participating in team discussions and conferences, and seeing their own work posted and published in high quality formats.
Students in large lecture classes are motivated by seeing what their peers have produced. Indeed, introducing these resources in regular classes inevitably produces another wave of students interested in joining a team through one of our research internships.
An important result of this learning cycle is the development of new courses that are partially designed and driven by this student input. One example is a joint Political Science and Communication undergraduate seminar on new media and political information flows. Another is a course on global issue networks. There is great demand for these kinds of courses, but they cannot be developed as hands-on learning experiences without the kinds of products that our teams at CCCE are currently creating.
One team that has been up and running for more than two years is a group
of students and faculty who are working on different aspects of Global
Citizenship. Different projects within this group include: the expansion
of citizenship claims beyond the nation state; the creation of new political
accountability relations between publics, corporations, trade and development
organizations; the rise of new Internet information channels for issues
and causes, and the transformation of political communication via global
electronic media. These students meet regularly in their various research
groups, and then gather twice a month for a team meeting. The products
that have been created by this team include: a series of wonderful interviews
(organized and conducted by the students) with leaders of citizen groups
and NGOs; think pieces on how democracy might work outside of national
institutions; working papers on new citizen politics in the global arena,
and data bases on the new media and global organizations that are transforming
Some of the student projects are showcased in the pages that follow in this section of the site.
For more information about joining one of our teams, or contributing
to the administrative and student support of this project, please contact
Lance Bennett, Director of CCCE at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
2006 - Learning Communities at CCCE
As the student learning focus at CCCE has expanded, individual projects have evolved into team and community efforts. These rewarding projects often extend research and classroom ideas into hands-on activities involving students, faculty, staff and various community organizations.
Recent examples include:
Becoming Citizens is an internship program involving faculty-student designed seminars on citizenship and civic engagement, led by graduate student mentors who facilitate undergraduate internships in schools and community organizations to promote youth participation in public life. With help from the Carlson Center, the Provost, the College of Arts & Sciences, and the departments of communication and political science, this program extends internship and service learning models in ways that bridge the classroom and the research center.
What's the Economy For? is a learning community that emerged from a lively discussion at the CCCE Citizen Roundtable and soon spread to students and faculty in various departments. With help from the Provost, various departments, and community experts, UW undergraduates were able to participate in intensive research and thinking about how different societies organize their economies for the benefit of different citizens. The result is a rich set of resources available to local, national, and international learning communities.
Jeannie Frantz - Political Science Major
in the College and Political Science Honors Programs
Andrew Waits - B.A. in Communication and Political
2003-2004 Undergraduate Research Projects
David Iozzi - B.A., Political Science and
Christine Lee – B.A. Political Science and Communication, 2004
2002-2003 Undergraduate Research Projects
Heather Gorgura - B.A. in Political Science and Comparative Literature, 2003
David Iozzi - Junior, Political Science and Communication
Wendi Pickerel - B.A. Latin American Studies 2002