An interdisciplinary, 22 credit hour undergraduate certificate program, PACE combines academic study with hands-on learning to give you unique preparation for political and civic engagement.
Who can join the PACE program?
Any undergraduate at IU Bloomington can apply to PACE. We welcome students with a record of active engagement in—or those who would like to be engaged in—political or civic activities.
The PACE certificate can be combined with any major in the College of Arts and Sciences, or with undergraduate degree programs in other schools at IU Bloomington.
What will I learn?
As a PACE student, you will gain the understanding, skills, and motivation needed to be successful in American public life.
The PACE program links the two main components of public life in America—political and civic engagement. You will discover that effective civic engagement requires an understanding of politics and political skills, and effective political engagement requires knowing how American civil society works and how to navigate it.
You’ll learn to seek out various perspectives, and work with those who hold opposing views. To engage in constructive dialogue, and develop informed critiques of political and civic institutions. And to analyze the effectiveness of policies, and devise effective solutions to public problems.
The Political And Civic Engagement program (PACE) cultivates knowledge, develops leadership, and builds communication skills to prepare members of the IU community to take action for positive change.
PACE learning goals
After participating in the program, PACE students should be able to:
- Understand the American political process and the operation of American civil society.
- Understand different styles of public leadership and the role of political and civic leaders.
- Understand the processes of decision making and implementation in governmental and nongovernmental organizations.
- Understand the core concepts and working vocabulary of American public and civic life such as citizenship, nongovernmental agency, federalism, social movements, and deliberative democracy.
- Understand the role of social movements and forms of protest in political and civic life.
- Analyze and use the products of American political and civic life such as legislation, government reports, judicial decisions, nonprofit organization websites, newspaper stories, and advocacy group manifestoes.
- Analyze and use the scholarship on American political and civic life and understand the relationship between theory and practice.
- Critique established political and civic organizations and institutions and challenge majoritarian assumptions about public life.
- Seek out various perspectives, engage in dialogue, analyze the effectiveness of policies, and take informed and principled stands on vital public issues.
- Work with those who hold opposing views and devise effective solutions to public problems through democratic decision making.
- Communicate in an effective and persuasive manner in a variety of public venues.
When should I join PACE?
You can join PACE at any time, but most students do so during the second semester of their freshman year, or the first semester of their sophomore year.
We encourage you to meet with a PACE advisor as soon as you form an interest in PACE so we can help you plan your courses most efficiently.