Civic Education for the Digital Age

Specialized Study Program in Civic Education for the Digital Age

Specialized Study Program in Civic Education for the Digital Age

Online Program


6 months



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The barrage of information in the digital age, and the political ferocity in today's climate can be difficult to sort through, especially for youth. The digital revolution has transformed fundamentally important aspects of our democracy. These changes necessitate changes in civic education. If youth are to be prepared to deal with the challenges and tap into the opportunities afforded in our digital age, all youth will need access to high-quality civic media literacy education. Learn about fundamental concepts related to democratic education. Understand the challenges in our democracy through research, and hone that understanding with a focus on the digital sphere's impact. Discover methods for integrating high-quality civic media literacy learning that has practical application for your students. Then, develop your own lessons demonstrating the need for students' civic participation, and a critical approach to information they find to help them think for themselves and make informed decisions.

Designed For

Anyone with a bachelor's degree desiring to increase their students' awareness and understanding of civic participation.

What You'll Learn

  • Classic approaches to understanding democracy and civic learning
  • How the rise of digital media challenges these approaches
  • Methods to transform civic learning and integrate it across the curriculum
  • The importance of digital literacy among youth and ways to demonstrate application
  • How to develop and implement a civic education-based lesson and best practices based on your observation and discussion with other educators in the course

What You Can Do With This Certificate

Educators enrolled in this program will equip themselves with relevant knowledge and new research to teach civic education with a modern perspective. This not only builds on your competencies, but also fosters a stronger ability to reach students and make an impact with how they form opinion, how they view themselves within their community, and how they participate in informed and productive ways.

Created in partnership with the Civic Engagement Research Group, KQED Education and the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement. 

Real People. Real Results.

“My experience at UCR Extension was great. My instructors worked in industry, not just academics, and were able to share real-world scenarios for the assignments we were learning and participating in. I took real-time experiences back to the office, and implemented the new knowledge immediately.”

Tracy Trettin

Administrative Operations Manager
UCR School of Medicine
Riverside, CA

Earning the Certificate

For more information see How to Earn a Certificate

Certificate Courses

Our certificate programs are designed to be flexible, allowing you the option to take just a few courses or to earn the complete certificate. If choosing to complete the certificate, we recommend you get the most out of your experience by following the suggested completion path below.

Quarter 1

Educating for Democracy


4 units

Quarter 2

Promoting Media Literacy and Youth Civic Engagement (formerly: Youth and Civic Media)


4 units

Educating for Informed and Equitable Voting


4 units

Instructor Spotlight

“We recognize how valuable time is for teachers, and we understand the needs of non-traditional learners, so we strive to design our programs and schedule our courses with a work, life, and learning balance in mind. Whether you want to add a credential, enhance your skills, complete a professional certificate, or get started on a Master's degree, we have what you need.”

Annette Webb

Associate Dean of Academic Programs
UCR Extension
Riverside, CA

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