ERIC Number: ED491053
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Voting and Political Participation of We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution Alumni in the 2004 Election
Center for Civic Education
Between November 2004, and March 2005, the Center for Civic Education conducted a survey of alumni from the We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution program. Altogether, 522 alumni responded, ranging in age from 18-34. The primary focus of the study was on voting and other forms of political engagement. Due to self-selection by respondents, these findings should be considered as suggestive rather than generalizable to all We the People alumni. We the People alumni were compared with a national probability study from the 2004 "National Election Studies" (NES) of other young Americans their age. In other questions, alumni were also compared with over 289,000 American college freshmen ("The American Freshman: National Norms for Fall 2004"). Among alumni eligible to vote in 2004, key findings are: (1) 92% of alumni reported voting in November 2000, in contrast to 78% of those surveyed in the NES study; (2) 85% of alumni said they had voted in all previous elections; (3) 63% reported being very interested in national politics and national affairs; (4) 60% of alumni discussed national politics and affairs every day or nearly every day; and (5) 58% of alumni felt becoming a community leader was essential or very important, in contrast to 31% of college freshmen. In summary, We the People alumni surveyed are better informed and more politically engaged than their peers. (Contains 7 endnotes.)
Descriptors: Probability, Politics, College Freshmen, Voting, National Norms, Democracy, Citizenship, Alumni, Citizen Participation, Political Attitudes
Center for Civic Education, 5146 Douglas Fir Road, Calabasas, CA 91302-1467. Tel: 818-591-9321; Fax: 818-591-9330.
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Department of Education, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Center for Civic Education, Calabasas, CA.