Document Type



Available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 4.0 International Licence


Business and Management., 5.3 EDUCATIONAL SCIENCES

Publication Details

Journal of International Education in Business


Purpose – This paper aims to present an interpretation of freehand drawings produced by a sample of final year degree level learners in response to the question: “What is civic engagement”? The aim in using this approach, with final year degree learners from different countries, but pursuing the same degree, was to compare and contrast their understanding of civic engagement.

Design/methodology/approach – Learners completed their drawings and then discussed their drawings in small groups. All of their drawings were initially examined quantitatively before a sample of six drawings were selected for in-depth qualitative examination.

Findings – Using learner-generated drawings enables learners convey visually what can be challenging to verbalise. After the exercise, some learners discovered that they had a good basic appreciation of civic engagement.

Research limitations/implications – Describing civic engagement pictorially forced participants to think about what the essence of civic engagement was for them.

Originality/value – This study shows how a collaborative learning experience, rather than a competitive comparison of performance, facilitates learners readily demonstrating their level of understanding and appreciation for civic engagement.