Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - NSU Access Only

Degree Name

Master of Science


Center for Advancement of Education


Government (Administrative Body), Local Government, Governing Boards, City Government, Municipal Government, County Officials, Urban Planning, Citizenship Education, Citizen Role, United States Government (Course), Courts, Public Affairs Education, Experiential Learning.


The author implemented a program of observation of local governmental bodies in the community with his four classes of twelfth grade U.S government students. Its aim was to make students aware of their local governments and how they effect them by observing a sample of local government bodies in action. The program consisted of three components: orientation, implementation, and evaluation. The students were given a slide presentation and an information packet that explained the program and its requirements. The packet also gave a description of the bodies the students would be observing and a map that showed the locations of the meetings. The students were given five weeks in which to complete three observations of not less than one hour each of three different types of governmental bodies--local legislative bodies, advisory boards, and tria1 courts. They were given worksheets on which to record pertinent information with spaces for sign-in, sign-out, and an official’s signature. As a follow-up each class discussed what had been observed at the meetings, and a posttest was given to measure how much had been learned by comparing its score with that of a pretest that had been given at the beginning of the program. Students scored an average of 25 percentage points higher on the posttest than on the pretest. Though somewhat apprehensive before the observations, students on the whole reacted favorably to the program. (Appendices include documents sent to gather information the student’s packet, the worksheets, the pretest- post test, and a chart showing the students' reaction to the program).

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