Civic Education & Engagement

Education for civic engagement and responsive governance were founding objectives of the political science profession at the beginning of the 20th century and remain essential for the 21st century. Supporting and sustaining quality civic education has been an important theme throughout the history of the American Political Science Association. We encourage political scientists to share information with their students and communities to increase awareness of public issues and to inform deliberations by sharing disciplinary knowledge on engagement.

Registering to vote is an important step toward an engaged and participatory citizenship. Therefore, APSA encourages ongoing campus voter registration efforts and student participation in the electoral and civic life of their local communities, state, and national government.

APSA offers a range of resources related to civic engagement here, as well as on APSA's new civic engagement website, RAISE the Vote.

  • RAISE the Vote - Resources to Amplify and Increase Student Engagement
  • APSA Publications on Civic Engagement
  • Funding for Civic Education
  • Online Civics Resources
APSA Books on Civic Engagement
Teaching Civic Engagement Globally


(2021) In the interest of preventing an apathetic generation of students who find no reason to partake in social or global activism, Teaching Civic Engagement Globally offers a compilation of lesson plans, classroom studies, and suggestions for educators to help teach how and why human beings ought to engage with the issues around them. Edited by Elizabeth Matto, Alison McCartney, Elizabeth Bennion, Alasdair Blair, Taiyi Sun, and Dawn Michelle Whitehead.



Teaching Civic Engagement Across the Disciplines


Teaching Civic Engagement Across the Disciplines (2017), edited by Elizabeth C. Matto, Alison Rios Milltett McCartney, Elizabeth A. Bennion, and Dick Simpson, explains how campuses can promote high quality education for civic engagement, providing a wealth of examples of successful practices, techniques, and assessment strategies. 



Also, check out the ONLINE SUPPLEMENT to the book which provides additional materials and resources on civic education related to assessment and evaluations, course materials, syllabi, and working with the community.

Civic Engagement: From Student to Active Citizen


Civic Engagement: From Student to Active Citizen (2013), edited by Elizabeth C. Matto, Alison Rios Millett McCartney, Elizabeth A. Bennion, and Dick Simpson, provides an exploration of key theoretical discussions, innovative ideas, and best practices in educating citizens in the 21st century. Find out more and read a printable version of the book here.  

Funding for Civic Education

The Alma Ostrom and Leah Hopkins Awan Civic Education Fund was established in honor of Elinor and Vincent Olstroms' mothers. It supports the promotion of democratic engagement through research, outreach, and seminars that promote the study of the critical role of citizens in a democratic policy. 

  • Learn more and apply here
  • Donate to the fund here
Online Civics Resources

APSA has assembled a list of resources to guide teachers through campaign and election season, and to encourage student civic engagement more broadly. 

if you have a civic engagement resource that you would like us to highlight here, please email teaching@apsanet.org.