Course code:



I - Introductory

Class size limit:


Meets the following requirements:

  • W - Writing

Typically offered:

Every other year

In rural areas throughout the world, citizens, nonprofit leaders, agency staff, and elected officials are coming together to frame complex issues and bring about change in local policy and practice. This course outlines the theory and practice of community development, drawing on the instructor’s experience with the Dùthchas Project for sustainable community development in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland, Mount Desert Island Tomorrow, and other examples in the literature. In short, community development allows community members to frame issues, envision a preferred future, and carry out projects that move the community toward that preferred future. By using writing as process—prewriting, writing, and rewriting—to frame and communicate complex public issues, students gain practical skills in listening, designing effective meetings, facilitation, project planning, and developing local policy. Readings, discussions, and guests introduce students to community development theory and practice. Class projects are connected to community issues on Mount Desert Island. By writing and revising short papers, students can reflect on class content, community meetings, newspaper stories, and reading assignments. Evaluation will be based on preparation for and participation in class discussion, several short papers, participation in field work, and contribution to a successful group project. This class meets the first-year writing requirement.



Always visit the Registrar's Office for the official course catalog and schedules.