The Master Challenge
LegSim offers an active learning curriculum as well as a technology. The curriculum includes a series of scaffolding assignments that prepare students for the master challenge, which asks them to demonstrate that they have become effective legislators. Each assignment asks students to apply class content to their simulation activities.
Instructors choose among the available assignments (and modify them) according to the needs and time constraints of the course. Instructors can also decide to give students more or less discretion in terms of organizing the legislature and setting the agenda.
More about the Final Report. Students receive this assignment at the beginning of the course but it is not due until the end of course. The assignment signals that the simulation is going to be an important part of the course and that they all have roles to play (all of their grades will be partly based on demonstrating their effectiveness).
Part 1 of the Final Report asks students to assess their own performance in light of what they have learned about representation and congressional elections. What did they do well and not so well? What are their electoral strengths and vulnerabilities? Each student then develops a reelection theme and produces a piece of campaign propaganda capturing that theme.
Part 2 of the Final Report asks students to review the performance of another legislator (assigned at random). What are their electoral strengths and vulnerabilities? Each student produces another piece of opposition campaign propaganda that highlights a theme for why that legislator should not be reelected.
Students who know that someone is paying attention are more likely to think about the electoral consequences of their actions. In addition, at the end of class, each student gets to experience having someone misrepresent all of their hard work!
The Final Report as well as many scaffolding assignments can be found on the Assignments page of this website. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to gain access.