ERIC Number: ED368637
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993-Sep
Reference Count: N/A
Applying Theory to Practice in Public Administration Internships.
Johnson, Roberta Ann
This document describes a public administration internship course. The paper illustrates how student intern experiences can be used as a base in a public administration internship course to teach about public administration, and to show how students' practice can help them learn, understand, and remember theory. In the course the students worked as volunteers in public agencies, met as a biweekly group in a seminar fashion, read articles, and wrote journal themes. The professor used a discussion on assigned articles to show students how to use their agency experience to understand some of the ideas from these assignments, using their intern work as an experimental testing ground for the administrative theory they were reading. Learning public administration theory, concepts, and ideas is the primary goal. The intern experience is brought back into the classroom to use as a vehicle to teach public administration. The paper describes four reading assignment themes. These are Max Weber's idea of hierarchy, social dynamics in a bureaucracy, human centered bureaucracy, and the culture of organizations. Using student intern experience to teach has three clear benefits: (1) it insures enthusiastic participation in class discussion; (2) it creates an experiential context to learn new concepts and uses new vocabulary; and (3) it makes it more likely that concepts will be understood and remembered. (DK)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Researchers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Weber (Max)
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association (Washington, DC, September 1-5, 1993).