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Field Studies in Civic Engagement: CFS 397-0

Course Type: Variable Credit (1-4 units)

For Weinberg students who started at Northwestern before Summer 2023, this course will count one credit toward Weinberg Distribution Requirement for Area III: Social and Behavioral Sciences (unless taken as part of Engage Chicago.)

For Weinberg students who started at Northwestern in or after Summer 2023 (including transfer students), this course currently does not count toward any Foundational Disciplines or WCAS requirements. For students in other NU schools, please talk with your academic advisor to see if this or other CFS classes count towards any requirements for you. 

Students can take 397-0 twice, once with CFS and once with Engage Chicago (summer program with CCE.)

Course Description

Civic engagement involves any concerted social action in the public sphere, through a vista of popular movements, reform, reaction and revolt, and democratic participation across the social spectrum—block clubs to public art to polling firms to local Democratic Party offices.  This course approaches civic engagement from an American historical perspective, with particular attention to local political cultures, community organizing traditions, cultural citizenship and belonging, and ideas and discourses on the meanings and responsibilities of civic life.  The readings and exercises provide a look at our ethical and political dimensions as civic subjects, while discussions and internships build practical skills in entering the civic arena, organizing people, navigating the media, bureaucracies, and elected officials, and taking part in crucial public debates of our time.

Instructors: Liz McCabe; Sarah Silins

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Types of Internships that relate to the Field Studies in Civic Engagement course: