Testing civics: State-level civic education requirements and political knowledge

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Discipline 1 Political science
Discipline 2 Educational research
Publication Title Testing civics: State-level civic education requirements and political knowledge
Description Do state-level exams in civics have an impact on young people’s civic knowledge? We hypothesize that civics exams have the biggest effect in states where they matter most—i.e., where they are a requirement for high school graduation—the incentive hypothesis. We further hypothesize that civics requirements have the biggest effect on young people with less exposure to information about the U.S. political system at home, specifically Latinos and, especially, immigrants—the compensation hypothesis. We test these hypotheses with two sources of data—first, from high school students with the 2006 and 2010 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) civics test, and second, from a large national survey of 18-24 year-olds. Across the two datasets, we find modest support for the incentive hypothesis and strong support for the compensation hypothesis.
Publication Year 2016
Publication Author David Campbell, Richared Niemi
Publication Type Study
Publisher American Political Science Review
Major Funders Spencer Foundation
Publication Link https://edre.uark.edu/_resources/pdf/david-campbell-1.pdf