Diversity and Democracy

In Print

First-Generation College Students: Understanding and Improving the Experience from Recruitment to Commencement by Lee Ward, Michael J. Siegel, and Zebulun Davenport (Jossey-Bass 2012, $40 hardcover)

First-generation college students are a growing presence in American higher education, calling colleges and universities to attend to their specific contexts, assets, and challenges. This brief volume provides guidance to educators working to create systemic support for first-generation student success, with attention to the characteristics these students generally share and the interlocking factors that may affect their persistence. With specific examples of promising practices at a variety of higher education institutions (including high-impact practices like residential learning communities and service-learning courses), the book suggests possible frameworks for educators to build and assess an institutional approach to acknowledging, supporting, and affirming first-generation students.

The Engaged Campus: Certificates, Minors, and Majors as the New Community Engagement, edited by Dan W. Butin and Scott Seider (Palgrave Macmillan 2012, $32 paperback)

This volume grapples with the question of how educators can buttress higher education's growing community engagement movement with formal academic programs. Urging that the time has come to join engaged practice with articulated theory, the editors and authors offer a series of chapters on how a wide range of certificates, minors, and majors have attempted this task. With candid reflection on lessons learned, contributing authors describe successes and failures in establishing these programs and suggest what might be next for the field. The book is essential reading for anyone concerned with community engagement's future in the academy.

Education and Social Change: Connecting Local and Global Perspectives, edited by Geoffrey Elliott, Chahid Fourali, and Sally Issler (Continuum 2012, $55 paperback)

American readers interested in education's role in effecting social change across globally interdependent contexts will find much that resonates in this broad-ranging volume on educational policy and practice throughout the world. Drawing examples primarily from the United Kingdom, with chapters additionally focused on locations in Asia, Australia, Africa, and continental Europe, the book illustrates the complexity of educational reform that aims to prepare students for citizenship and global engagement while also upholding principles of access and equity. An ambitious attempt to engage with a critical topic, the volume offers comparative perspectives to readers raising similar questions in American contexts.

New from AAC&U:

Making Progress? What We Know About the Achievement of Liberal Education Outcomes by Ashley Finley (AAC&U 2012, $15 Member/$25 Nonmember)

Written by AAC&U's senior director of assessment and research, this comprehensive report draws from recent national survey data to paint a hopeful but sobering picture of the state of liberal learning on college campuses. With data focused on outcomes related to global learning, civic engagement, and intercultural competence, the report points to the need to assess and improve learning outcomes across a range of areas, including those broadly related to students' personal and social responsibility. It also reinforces that these personal and social responsibility outcomes are critical components of liberal education.

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