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Harrison, Amanda
Manager, Honors and Scholars Programs

Anderson Hall, Room 112 on a map

Community-Based Research Scholars 4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW Washington, DC 20016 United States

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Welcome to CBRS!

All first-year students admitted to the Community-Based Research Scholars program will enroll in an exclusive CBRS section of Complex Problems and the CBRS Lab during their fall semester. In the spring semester, students will enroll in a section of the Community-Based Research course, where they will engage in a group research project in partnership with a local non-profit.

Fall CBRS Courses

 All first-year CBRS students will enroll in IDIS-101 and choose one section of CORE-106.

CORE-106 Collaboration is Complex
Professor Danielle Mysliwiec  

In this current moment where there are extreme divisions and it can feel as though people are struggling to find common ground, practicing and honing collaborative skills is critical. This seminar and Studio Art-based course will present students with a series of collaborative art models, including Community-engaged Art, Social Practice and Art Activism. Each of these models will require students to engage the complexities and issues inherent in collaboration as they produce artworks of their own, together. In making collaborative artworks using these current frameworks, students will practice finding common ground among diverse perspectives, develop community minded ethics, and better understand their potential roles and contributions in future collaborative work.

CORE-106 No Child Left Behind, Really?
Professor Amaarah DeCuir

Societies expect students to shape the future by initiating change and transforming the world. But educators and policy makers relegate students to schools that structure inequalities and restrict learning opportunities. Students struggle to assert agency under social constructs that influence their daily school lives. Today’s students bear the burdens of achievement gaps, bullying, college-prep pressures, evolving identities and many other dynamics rooted in today’s social conditions. Our course seeks to understand how American students both reproduce and challenge social, cultural, political, and educational realities of today. We will seek to understand how students from different marginalized communities experience school, including racial groups (white and minoritized communities), LGBTQ students, students with special needs, and language minorities in rural, urban, and suburban settings. Beginning with an exploration of today’s American students and their schooling realities, this course will consider the structures, beliefs, and traditions that influence how elementary and secondary students experience schooling. Unlike other courses in the School of Education that consider the role of schools in society, or best practices for teachers and leaders, this course will explore how students experience schools today. Recognizing that the overwhelming number of AU freshman and new transfer students have prior experiences in elementary and secondary education – this course will enable us to draw on our collective experiences in school as background knowledge. Primary sources will be used to amplify diverse voices of American students across school contexts. Additional course content will be presented from materials spanning multiple disciplines, including education research, literature, digital media, news, and scholarly papers. The instructor will guide the identification of issues that elementary and secondary students are currently facing in schools, these will comprise the foundation of the course, emphasizing issues that resonate both in scholarly literature and popular discourse.

IDIS-101 Community-Based Research Lab
Professor Noemi Enchautegui-de-Jesus or Ms. Amanda Harrison
In this multidisciplinary course, taken by all first-semester CBRS students, learn the principles of community-based learning, community-based research, and the fundamentals of social science research. This course also provides students with training on topics such as diversity, privilege, team dynamics, public speaking, interviewing, and other topics designed to prepare students for successful community-based learning and research projects. This course includes community visits.

Spring Course

IDIS-340: Community-Based Research
Students engage in research to inform solutions for a pressing community problem, identify avenues to effect social change or evaluate program impact with a local non-profit in the Washington, DC area. Students learn how to design a research study, collect data (surveys, interviews or focus groups), analyze data and present research findings to the non-profit partner. This course works with one non-profit partner for the entire semester. Past Research Partners: United Planning Organization, Maya Angelou Public Charter School, LAYC Career Academy and Thrive DC.