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Civic and Political Knowledge and Skills

Possessing political and civic knowledge is widely believed to be an important, even essential component of good citizenship. Although political and civic knowledge are similar, there are some differences. Civic knowledge is generally thought of as foundational information about the political, social, and economic system in which one lives (for example, the names of the three branches of the federal government in the United States) and often includes understanding the function of certain institutions (e.g., why civil liberties or access to multiple sources of news are important in democracies). This has been of long-standing interest but has intensified with recent concerns about low voting rates, especially among young people. As civic education has expanded in the recent past, increasing attention has been paid to ...

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