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ERIC Number: EJ1202083
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018
Abstractor: As Provided
Engaging Students: Conducting Community-Based Research in the Senior Capstone Course
Downey, Dennis J.
Journal of Higher Education Outreach and Engagement, v22 n4 p115-140 2018
Engaging undergraduate students in community-based research (CBR) offers rich benefits to both students and communities (Strand, Marullo, Cutforth, Stoeker, & Donahue, 2006). Finding ways to expand its application promises to multiply those benefits. Senior capstone courses represent a promising vehicle for that expansion, as they are also generally research based and extremely common in contemporary higher education (Hauhart & Grahe, 2015). However, CBR and capstones each have multiple goals and present significant challenges, raising questions about the feasibility of merging practices. This research presents a case study of a capstone sociology course organized around group-based CBR projects. The case demonstrates that CBR-focused capstones, if intentionally designed, are feasible. Assessments by students and community partners provide evidence that the course also achieved the goals of capstones and of CBR. Discussion addresses steps taken since the initial case study to sustain and institutionalize the practice, including measures to assist instructors.
Descriptors: Undergraduate Students, Student Research, Sociology, Curriculum, School Community Programs, Student Projects, Service Learning, Student Attitudes, Program Effectiveness
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California