Course Related Materials

Public Sphere Pedagogy requires a coordinated effort at the public events, but it all starts in the classroom. In this sub-section you will find materials related to the incorporation of the Chico Great Debate in CMST 131, which is our course in Public Speaking.

Different courses handle course integration in unique ways, and the style of integration changes over time. When we started the Great Debate we simply tacked it onto the end of an existing course. By examining the assessment results over time, we realized that we needed more thorough course integration to help students make sense of their experience at the event.

In the Public Speaking class we use a consistent theme for the whole semester. Previous semesters have included themes like “Mental Health” or “Education Reform” that allow students to find a point of personal connection under a broad topic area. We embed these themes and schedules in syllabi and course material.

You will notice that in the Course Syllabus we have a specific section on “Civic Engagement,” and the Great Debate is visible on the course calendar. This informs students early on what they will be doing and how the course and event will work together. Specific questions are addressed on the last page of the Course Packet. This provides TAs and students with answers to commonly asked questions and helps us solve problems before they start.

Regardless of the form, course integration is a critical step in helping to make PSP succeed. Linking the work of the classroom with the work we do in and around our community helps students understand how the two are connected.