AL 210 will include a common basis and a particular focus. The common basis shared by all sections over all semesters covers the nature of democracy, dialogue, dissent, citizenship, justice, critique on the more conceptual level. The particular focus for each section is determined by each instructor who selects a social, cultural, or political problem to use to illustrate and practice deliberation, engagement, and critique.
For the common basis among all courses, faculty will draw from a set of recommended sources drawn from various CAL disciplines (departments as well as interdisciplinary programs). While there are no universally required readings, faculty will be able to draw from a set of sources related to one basic theme of the course: democratic deliberation in general and its relation to citizenship, engagement, participation, justice, and critique. Sources will include essays, novels, poems, religious writings, plays, works of art, film, historical analysis, philosophy, political theory, and others. This list of sources will be drawn up in cooperation with faculty planning the Citizen-Scholar program and faculty planning to teach in it. Sources reflecting international cultural diversity will be recommended at least by faculty in the language departments; sources reflecting national cultural diversity will be recommended by all faculty.
Faculty teaching the course have leeway to choose a particular focus that involves social, economic, cultural, or political justice and that also reflects various modes of participation in democratic deliberation and decision-making broadly construed. Faculty will structure the course around the particular focus selected. Examples might include: prison reform, women in India, food security, religion in public life, climate change, indigenous community rights, the Black Lives Matter movement, etc. The focus can range from a very specific problem to a more abstract aspect of social, economic, cultural, or political justice, provided that it allows for examination and engagement with participation and democratic deliberation in identifying, illuminating, or resolving the issue.
1. The course must include “a significant emphasis on writing, with opportunities for peer-review, instructor-provided feedback, and some level of revision.” IAH also has a focus on “writing to learn” rather than “learning to write”.
2. The course must be united by a question/problem.
3. The course must include multiple disciplinary perspectives with texts/sources from multiple genres and media, and use mostly primary sources which reflect the diversity of human experience.
4. The course must include historical context.
5. The course must be culturally diverse in organization and materials.
These five projects are listed in the rough suggested order a faculty member might employ them during the semester. No particular order is required. Faculty can determine whether any should be group or individual projects. These do not exclude other assignments or projects. They might overlap. Engagement is not a specific requirement in the course but remains as an option in (c). The program as a whole includes engagement and service but this course is more the theoretical and practical preparation for engagement.