Connecting students’ area of studies to relevant policies and political platforms and emphasizing the importance of voting as a response to material learned in the classroom has been proven to increase student voter turnout. In addition, students face numerous procedural barriers to voting.
Many students have never voted before and must navigate various processes, deadlines, and forms in order to successfully vote on Election Day. Including voter education as part of the classroom education experience will address many of these barriers and equip students with the information necessary to complete the steps needed to vote in a timely and accurate manner. Given the University’s interest in increasing the voter turnout rate among its students, adding elections content to courses is crucial.
Curated Course Structures and Components
- Full Courses and Syllabi
- Assignments and Lesson Plans
- Other materials
- Gephardt Institute for Civic and Community Engagement Faculty Voter Engagement Resource This webpage has been curated especially for Washington University faculty. It includes election resources to add to courses, including syllabus language, PowerPoint slides, Canvas announcements, and more.
Curated Relevant Content
ReadArticles about integrating voter engagement into courses
- Pedagogical Value of Polling Place Observation by Students
- I’ll Register to Vote If You Teach Me How: A Classroom-Based Registration Experiment
- Embedding Engagement in a Political Science Course: Community College and University Students and the Help America Vote College Poll Worker Program
- Institute for Democracy and Higher Education Election Imperatives 2020 Note faculty-specific strategies on pages 8 and 9.
- Making Sense of... The Vote by Mail Conversation
- Block the Vote: Voter Suppression in 2020
- Volunteer at the on-campus polling location
- Engage Democracy events – The Gephardt Institute for Civic and Community Engagement will be hosting civic education events throughout the semester. These will include events that discuss important policy issues, how the pandemic is affecting the vote, and more.
- Become an academic voter engagement hub – Some WashU academic departments have been trained on voter registration and voter engagement strategies to better help the students in their department turn out to vote. If you are interested in having some members of your department trained, please contact Lindsay Gassman, Voter Engagement Fellow, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Be a poll worker. Please note that this activity has heightened risk at this time. The Gephardt Institute is not encouraging this for students this year.
Voter Engagement Fellow
Assistant Director for Civic Engagement Education