OU published a nonpartisan Canvas module on Aug. 25 about voting, voter registration and engaging in democracy.
The module discusses how to vote, the importance of voting and provides resources for community members who want to get involved or are interested in learning more about civic engagement.
The module was created by Lauren Schueler, the director of the N.E.W. Leadership program and civic engagement at the Carl Albert Congressional Research and Studies Center.
“The module creates a space where students get the information they need and can learn at their own pace, without someone standing up in a classroom and taking up their time,” Schueler said. “This way, students can log on if they want the information in a self-paced way.”
In the 2016 election, about 48.3 percent of college students voted, according to a study by the Institute for Democracy and Higher Education.
“We see this project as a way to fulfill our mission to strengthen representative democracy. It is why the Center sponsors other programs like Oklahoma Votes and Civic Engagement Fellows,” Schueler said.
The module is split into three sections, the first of which goes over terms such as civic engagement, democratic engagement, voting history, eligibility and voting rights.
The next two sections split readers into two different categories — in-state voters and out-of-state voters — but the contents remain similar in both categories. It takes the reader through a three-step process: registering to vote, making a voting plan and researching ballots.
“We’re seeing other institutions use similar tactics as we head into the 2020 election in November, and (with) the uncertainty with COVID-19 and not knowing what's going to happen, I think that tools like this are so important,” Schueler said. “We are hopeful that faculty are willing to add it to their classes and provide a really good resource for students."