Civics and Citizenship Assessment

Publication Date



Citizen participation, Civics, Student beliefs


Paper presented at the ECPR General Conference in Budapest 8-10 September.


The process of political socialisation of adolescents includes more than the acquisition of knowledge about society, citizenship and the political system. In a democracy, citizens are expected to participate actively in the political process. Active participation, however, requires citizens to believe in their own ability to influence the course of politics, in other words, to feel politically efficacious. Therefore, enhancing control beliefs and the willingness to act politically could be viewed as important areas of civic and citizenship education. This paper examines changes in levels and relationships regarding efficacy and expected participation using data from students at different stages of political socialisation. It uses data collected during the two surveys of the IEA Civic Education Study (Torney-Purta, Lehmann, Oswald and Schulz, 2001; Amadeo, Torney-Purta, Husfeldt and Nikolova, 2002) and comprises two age groups: 14-year-old lower secondary students (grade 8 or 9) and upper secondary students (grade 11 or 12).


English, English