416 resources available

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Annenberg Learner develops and distributes multimedia resources for teaching and learning in a range of subjects, including civics and government. Video components are enhanced with websites that include online texts, guides and extensive background information. For teachers, the website offers free professional development workshops and courses as well as the opportunity to earn graduate education credit.

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For teachers and students, the American Bar Association’s Division of Public Education offers lessons plans for K-12. Topics include civic engagement, the Constitution, due process, human rights, and much more. The Dialogue program provides lawyers, judges and teachers with resources to engage students and community members in discussions of fundamental American legal principles and civic traditions. Its Civics and Law Academy engages middle and high school students in learning about law and society.

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The United Nations website contains a huge amount of information that dates back to the global governing body’s inception in 1945. From the U.N. home page there are links to several of its divisions and programs.

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U.S. PIRG is the umbrella group and national advocate for 25 state Public Interest Research Groups. The citizen-funded state PIRGs work on a wide range of consumer rights issues in 47 states and Washington, D.C.

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Resources for the Future is a nonprofit environmental research organization that does not take positions or engage in advocacy. It is a good neutral source of information on environmental topics.

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RAND Corp. conducts research on issues that relate to a broad range of public policy matters. The nonprofit corporation has been operating since 1948, when it was primarily concerned with security and defense technology; it has since broadened its areas of research to include health, education, environmental and social policy.

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Public Citizen is a consumer advocacy group that was founded in 1971 by Ralph Nader, a liberal activist and later a Green Party presidential candidate. The group says it works for “openness and democratic accountability in government, for the right of consumers to seek redress in the courts; for clean, safe and sustainable energy sources; for social and economic justice in trade policies; for strong health, safety and environmental protections; and for safe, effective and affordable prescription drugs and health care.”

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This independent, nonprofit website lays out the arguments on both sides of a host of controversial issues. Its mission statement: “We promote critical thinking, education, and informed citizenship.”

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Pew Research Center, a nonpartisan organization that’s a subsidiary of the Pew Charitable Trusts, calls itself a “fact tank.” It conducts public opinion polling and social science research, and publishes reports and information on various issues through seven distinct projects.

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The Natural Resources Defense Council is a pro-environmental protection nonprofit. It works “to protect wildlife and wild places and to ensure a healthy environment for all life on earth,” according to its website.

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A bipartisan organization for state, commonwealth and territorial legislators and their staffs, the National Conference of State Legislatures “provides research, technical assistance and opportunities for policymakers to exchange ideas on the most pressing state issues.” The organization advocates the interests of state governments.

Glossary

Accountability means that the government in a democracy is responsible to the people for its actions.

Congress sends the states twelve amendments to the Constitution, but only ten of the amendments— known as the Bill of Rights — are ratified. The two that are not adopted deal with congressional pay raises and the size of districts for the House of Representatives. The pay raise amendment is approved by only six of