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Policy, Community, and Self

Semester and Year SP 2019
Course Number PRACT-UG1475
Section 001
Instructor Eric Brettschneider
Days M
Time 6:20 PM - 9:00 PM
Units 4
Level U



Intended to introduce policy, this course includes an internship at a policy and/or advocacy organization. Community building, family well-being, early childhood education, health, juvenile justice reform, service integration and child welfare are featured in readings, discussion, and internships. Through examples such as ethnic-matching placements in foster care, zero-tolerance approaches to drug abuse, or public financing of political campaigns, students come to understand how government, schools, gangs, religious institutions and families can, with varying degrees of explicitness and formality, all make policy. Students at the course conclusion are able to: identify policies within their lives; argue all sides of a policy question; appreciate the importance of qualitative and quantitative evidence; and distinguish implementation from formulation. Readings include Bowling Alone, by Robert Putnam, The Lost Children of Wilder, by Nina Bernstein; The Oath and the Office; and Not a Crime to Be Poor by Peter Edelman . Students will be helped to connect meetings they attend and the policy concepts taught and discussed in class. The goal is to leave no student unaware of the importance of policy in their own and their community's life. Policies that are empowering are emphasized, techniques doe oral and written advocacy, persuasion and attitude change are embedded in a final project that rquires using existing skills and talents and learning new ones. Assignments include an internship journal. Films include Ethics in America and Waiting for Superman.


All Syllabi

Course Type

Practicum (PRACT-UG)