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Author archive for Whitney Fields

  • My Students Continue to Teach Me…

    By Sheila Kennedy on December 4, 2015
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    I’ve posted previously about teaching an undergraduate class in Media and Public Policy. I have also posted–frequently–about the loss of real journalism in our current media environment. Abbreviated version: we are positively marinating in information, but losing the “journalism of verification” required by a democratic society. When we came to the point in the semester when students share their research […]
  • Data is Everywhere

    By John Guy on November 20, 2015
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    We are drowning in data. In sports, The Indiana Department of Education, election polling, and commercial surveys, data is so addictive to consumers that when information is not naturally available, vice presidents of this and that move to create it.  When data does not produce a desired result, the goal or the data calculation is changed. Sports data entertains:  A […]
  • Trust in News Media Won’t be Easily Resorted

    By Jeffery McCall on November 13, 2015
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    Anybody who has ever been lied to or betrayed by a friend or coworker knows just how difficult it is to re-establish trust in the offending party. Sometimes, credibility that is destroyed can never be fully restored. So it is with America’s news media, which recently got yet another dismal report on public perception of the journalism industry. The media […]
  • Magnitude of Opinion

    By John Guy on November 6, 2015
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    For example, does a visitor from North Dakota, sitting next to his friend in Bloomington, have the same intensity, the same degree of unrestricted loyalty and enthusiasm as his host who is an I.U. alum, former athlete and donor?  They both support The Hoosiers, but not with the same magnitude. Sports is one thing.  What about gun control?  The arguments […]
  • Will You Vote?

    By The Center for Civic Literacy on October 30, 2015
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    So now that the Electing Our Future forums are over, the real question is: Will you Vote?  Between these forums intending to inform and engage citizen and NUVO’s Voter Guide below, the choice is easy.  What are you waiting for?  Hit the polls on Tuesday! NUVO’s 2015 Voter Guide: *The following is an original post from NUVO.net and is republished […]
  • Electing Our Future: What Should the Future Hold for Indianapolis?

    By The Center for Civic Literacy on October 23, 2015
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    This past Tuesday, the final forum in the three part-series, “Electing Our Future,” took place at the Indianapolis Public Library’s downtown location.  This forum focused on “What Should the Future Hold for Indianapolis” presented by representatives of Plan 2020.  Read a description of the event and catch the live recording courtesy of WFYI, below. What Should the Future Hold for Indianapolis? Representatives of Plan 2020: The Bicentennial Plan […]
  • The Age of Propaganda?

    By Sheila Kennedy on October 16, 2015
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    The Program on International Policy Attitudes is a respected source for international opinion research. In the wake of the 2010 U.S. elections, it conducted a survey of voters, first looking to see those voters’ perceptions of how much misinformation was “out there,” and second, to determine just how misinformed voters actually were. Unsurprisingly, The poll found strong evidence that voters […]
  • Electing Our Future: The Issues We Face.

    By The Center for Civic Literacy on October 9, 2015
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    This past Tuesday, the second forum in the three part-series, “Electing Our Future,” took place at the Indianapolis Public Library’s downtown location.  This forum focused on The Issues Indianapolis faces presented by a panel of experts and facilitated by Sheila Kennedy.  Read the transcript of Sheila’s opening statements and catch the live recording of the event courtesy of WFYI, below. […]
  • Democratic Heresies

    By Sheila Kennedy on October 2, 2015
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    My husband and I have had a long-running argument about primary elections. (Hey–you argue with your spouse about whatever is important in your house, and we nerds will argue about what preoccupies us…) My husband insists that primaries have contributed mightily to political polarization. It’s unarguable that the people who turn out for primary elections are more partisan and ideological […]
  • Electing Our Future: How Indianapolis Works.

    By Sheila S. Kennedy on September 25, 2015
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    Media attention is already firmly focused on 2016 and the presidential race, and that’s understandable, given the amount of cluelessness and buffoonery being displayed by the current crop of “candidates” (note the quotation marks, because, really–who can take some of these people seriously?). Most recently, Ben Carson has replaced Donald Trump as the preferred mouthpiece for bigotry and unintended irony: […]
  • It’s Here! Electing our Future: A Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise Indianapolis

    By The Center for Civic Literacy on September 18, 2015
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    It’s hard to believe it, but The Electing Our Future forums are upon us!  The first event kicks off this coming Monday, Sept. 21st at 6pm. The Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce will take responsibility for this initial presentation. Which will include a brief description of where we are in the federal/state/local scheme of things; discussion of home rule/state authority; outline of […]
  • A ‘Tour of Duty’ Before College Would Serve Students and the Nation

    By Sheila Kennedy on September 11, 2015
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    Americans are increasingly concerned about two seemingly unrelated issues: a distressing lack of civic literacy and informed civic engagement in the general public, and the escalating burden of student-loan debt. We could make significant progress on both of those issues with an updated GI Bill. Late in World War II, Congress passed the original GI Bill, which provided a wide […]
  • Electing Our Future: A Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise Indianapolis

    By The Center for Civic Literacy on September 4, 2015
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    More Blogs. More Info. Why Local Elections Matter Why Should I Care? Can We Make You Care?
  • Electing Our Future- Why Local Elections Matter

    By The Center for Civic Literacy on August 28, 2015
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    As Indianapolis gears up for municipal elections this fall, the Center for Civic Literacy is trying to get the message out that local elections, DO matter! In a collaborative project with NUVO, WFYI and a number of civic organizations, we plan to identify individuals who are Marion County residents and registered to vote, but who do not vote in off-year […]
  • New Tool for Civic Learning in Development: The Civic Learning Rubric

    By The Center for Civic Literacy on August 21, 2015
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    In 2015, the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education, along with faculty and academic professionals from universities and colleges across the country will collaborate to create a national Civic Learning rubric. Following the VALUE Rubric Protocols developed by Wende Garrison and AAC&U, the national Civic Learning rubric will be suitable for institutional assessment of the civic content and knowledge students gain throughout their undergraduate education. The project team […]
  • Tending to the Nitty-Gritty

    By Sheila Kennedy on August 14, 2015
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    Our televisions and Internet feeds are rapidly filling with coverage of the 2016 Presidential race. It’s hard to fault the media for its fascination with our quadrennial political spectacle, especially since the Republican field contains no fewer than seventeen candidates (at this count—who knows what other hats may be flung into the ring), many of whom are happily demonstrating that […]
  • TV debates warp political process: Opposing view

    By Jeffery McCall on August 7, 2015
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    Political wonks and junkies breathlessly await the first televised “debate” of the primary season. But sensible voters will do something more productive on debate night. Taking a walk or going to a ballgame will be better than watching 10 over prepared GOP candidates try to upstage each other with verbal brickbats and one-liners. Political debates have become nothing more than […]
  • Why Should I Care? Why Should I Bother? Caring About Local Elections.

    By The Center for Civic Literacy on July 31, 2015
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    We have heard it all before; the endless list of reasons and complaints of why people don’t engage politically, especially on a local level.  The narrative seems to question, “Local politics don’t really matter anyways,” so “why should I care?” “why should I bother?”  People are quick to exercise their democratic right every four years in national elections, but why […]
  • No, We’re Not Arguing from the Same Facts. How can Democracies make Good Decisions if Citizens are Misinformed?

    As we all learned in high school, citizens of a good democratic government are well-informed, able to sort through the issues of the day in deciding who to vote for or what is a good policy. Thomas Jefferson, among many others, made that argument: “by far the most important bill in our whole code [of new laws] is for the […]
  • Houston, We Have a Problem…

    By Sheila Kennedy on July 17, 2015
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    In my periodic rants about the state of civic knowledge, I’ve frequently cited the results of a test periodically administered by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI) as evidence of the American public’s worrisome deficit of civic literacy. As troubling as that deficit of public knowledge is–as much as it contributes to political polarization and our inability to hold government actors […]