Call for Papers ECPR Joint Sessions of Workshops 2018 (Active Learning)

Beyond Descriptions and Good Practices. Empirical Effects of Active Learning Environments on Political Science Students’ Learning Outcomes

Workshop Directors:
Simon Usherwood (University of Surrey) and Peter Bursens (Universiteit Antwerpen)

Academic teaching in political science has evolved from teacher-centered towards student- centered teaching. This trend is accompanied by the creation of student-activating learning environments by means of - inter alia - debates, roll plays, simulations, (community) service learning, technology based learning such as online forums, social media, wikis and audience response systems, media-based learning using novels, films, music and podcasts, and problem based learning.

However, in contrast with the rhetoric and the many claims in the current literature, substantial empirical evidence on the effects of active learning environments on student learning outcomes is still limited. It is the aim of this workshop to build bridges and combine the expertise of political science and educational sciences in order to test the effects of active learning in political science curricula.

Do these active learning environments enhance political science students’ learning outcomes? Does the introduction of active learning in political science curricula make a difference for cognitive, affective and/or regulative learning outcomes? Which conditions make active learning tools more or less effective? What are the inhibiting and stimulating factors? Are there differential effects according to specific student attributes such as gender, prior knowledge, prior education or prior results?

For full details of the call see:

The ECPR's Joint Sessions of Workshops is a unique opportunity for scholars at all stages of their careers, from all parts of the world, and all sub-fields of political science and international relations, to come together for four days of intense discussion, feedback and collaboration. The event will consist of 30 Workshops comprising 15–20 scholars. Each participant presents a Paper, which is then discussed in depth by the rest of the group.

The 2018 edition will be held at the University of Nicosia in Cyprus, from 10–14 April. Please submit your proposal via by Wednesday 6 December 2017. Full details on

Contact or for more information. Kindly note: Paper proposals sent directly to Workshop Directors will not be considered.