Assessing Civic Mindedness
Embargo Lift Date
These models, although described using diverse language, share a worthwhile goal: to prepare American students to participate in democratic forums, even and especially in this time of economic need. Without this preparation, students may be rehearsing for work in a challenging economic environment without developing the critical skills they will need to build a new and more vibrant democratic society. In fact, the two goals are connected: As Martha Nussbaum has noted, "A flourishing economy requires the same skills that support citizenship" (2010). These skills include the ability to consider multiple angles, converse with those who hold different perspectives, and compromise to creatively solve urgent problems. Such are the habits that a liberal education engenders, and such education can help reverse our civic recession and inspire democratic engagement now and in the future.