Participatory Community Engagement I
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Level: Undergraduate, Graduate
Division: The New School for Public Engagement
School: Milano School of International Affairs, Management, and Urban Policy
Department: Milano General Curriculum
Course Number: NMGM 6014
Course Format: Seminar
Location: NYC campus
Permission Required: Yes
  • Civic Engagement
  • Social Justice
  • Multiculturalism & Social Change
This course has two primary goals. First, students will gain an understanding of the theory behind participatory community development, popular education and critical pedagogy. Students will read about and collectively discuss questions of powerlessness, marginalization, poverty, and inequality and how grassroots participatory processes have inspired community driven approaches to addressing these enduring problems. Students will also engage with academic critiques of participatory models in order to learn how to critically evaluate participatory processes. Second, through partnerships with local organizations and communities students will experiment with key participatory strategies and models. The specific skills students will practice include: Building relationships through observation and listening; Surveying communities for generative collective themes; Developing codes and discussion outlines; Designing and facilitating community-based workshops; Building trust and dialogue in groups; Facilitating community-based decision making; Conducting participatory evaluations; Analyzing and identifying root causes of poverty, inequality, and marginalization in the context of movement building. Through practice, theory, and dialogue students will learn the promises and also the inherent challenges of using participatory methodologies as a vehicle for social change.
Course Open to: Degree Students with Restrictions


Open to Graduate students.