Another way to teach EU politics

Among the various ways new technology has made my life easier is Google Scholar alerts: you just enter a search term and then it sends you regular emails with links to anything academic it finds. For a research area like mine – euroscepticism – that covers a very wide range of disciplines and sub-fields, it’s been a great way to keep aware of the flood of material that exists (even if I don’t already get around to reading).

One thing that I have read was this syllabus by Jacob Buksti from DIS, a non-profit that offers courses in Denmark and Sweden to North Americans. The course is one that aims to explore the European Union, but which also makes use of a study trip to Brussels and the Hague.

I share it as an example of how there is a variety of ways to tackle such subjects. Buksti’s novelty – which I’ve not seen used before in this context – is to get students to interview people in Brussels. From my reading of the syllabus, this helps to reinforce what the students learn from their classes, a simulation of the Council and their more conventional study visit, as well as developing their skill-set for research down the line.

How this works, we’d need to ask Buksti himself (which I will try to do), but as we all start up our teaching for the year, it’s always worth remembering that there’s always another way of doing things.

With that in mind, I’ll be posting some reports early next week from the UACES general conference in Bilbao, where there’s not only a L&T workshop day, but also several panels.