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Democracy & Modern Nationalism Project Roles

Posted in AmGov Projects


Leader - a good people person, someone able to motivate the team; it is the Leader's job to ensure that all members of the group are working and doing their assigned tasks.  The Leader should ensure that all group members have each other's contact (phone) numbers.  The Leader  coordinates meeting times and places for the group when needed.  If one member of the group is not working, it is, in part, the responsibility of the Leader.  It is essential that the Leader understand the Process of the project.  If the group has questions on what needs to be done, the Leader should be the primary contact between the group and the teacher.

Editor - a good details person, good at checking the team's work; the editor is responsible for ensuring that the finished project is done correctly and according to the requirements.  This does not mean that the Editor themself needs to do all the editing, just that they need to ensure that it gets done.  The Editor should be very much familiar with the requirements of each section.

Art Director - a creative person with an ability to judge what looks good; the Art Director needs to ensure that the project looks attractive.  It may be the Art Director's final decision to include graphs, photos, charts, images, supplementary music, etc. for the project. 

Archivist - an organized person who can keep track of materials needed; though this may seem a simple task at first, it is the Archivists responsibility to ensure nothing gets "lost"; although it is not necessary that the Archivist store all the materials, it may be reasonable to expect the Archivist to keep extra copies of all word-processed work on the project in case of computer disaster.  The Archivist may be asked to store and keep track of the Bibliographic materials as well.

Researcher - a thinking person who is able to find the info you need; this may also be someone with good computer skills who can effectively guide the group in valid web searches; the Researcher is the person who is best able to interject the intellectually creative spark into the project - someone who has a vision of what should be done and covered in the project.  Along with the Editor, the Researcher should have a good understanding of the goals of each section of the project and be able to assist the group in finding the needed information.  Note: this does NOT mean the Researcher does all the research for the group, only that they be capable of guiding the group as necessary.  The Researcher must have school-approved Internet Access.

Evaluator - a fair person who can assess how hard people are working.  At the end of the project, the Evaluator will write a brief assessment of each person and how they did on the project. In addition to the project grade itself, teams generally receive 10 group points per person on the Evaluation sheet. Thus a 5-member group will receive 50 points to distribute as they wish. The Evaluator will then distribute the points the teacher placed in the upper left-hand corner of the groupsheet.  If everyone works equally, everyone receives 10 points.  Negative points may be given to those who did little or no work, but not exceeding the total amount of points given by the teacher.  Those points may then be distributed to other students.  If some worked harder than others, it is reasonable for the Evaluator to give "slacker" members (negative) - 10 points (or more, with a maximum negative equal to the maximum positive possible) and add those extra points to the hard-working members' grade.  All of the re-distributed points are noted on the groupsheet, with explanations of why the points have been distributed.    Remember, however, all members of the group must sign off on the Evaluator's written assessment of the team.  These points are simply added onto the total grade at the conclusion of the project.  Once all group members have signed the sheet, the sheet is placed at the front of the project and the whole project is turned in.

The second set of roles are roles which play into the six sections of the project.  You will want to read up on the parts of the project  before you assign these roles, but it is important to realize that the Project Roles DO NOT DETERMINE what you necessarily work on for the project. 

Project Roles:

Statistician - someone good at finding and interpreting statistical data; they need to be able to think through the relationship between basic facts (statistical information) and the reality behind them.  The Statistician is responsible for ensuring that the Statistical Comparison Chart is completed appropriately.  It does not mean that the Statistician has to do it all themselves (they may, for example, have each member in the group contribute a certain number of statistics on their own), but they must ensure it is completed and valuable.

Historian I (Background Historian) - someone able to interpret cause and effect in history; generally the historian should be a good reader;   This Historian must ensure, however, that all the pre-regime material is covered and that it flows well in terms of historical narrative.

Historian II (Regime Historian) - someone able to interpret cause and effect in history; generally the historian should be a good reader;  This Historian must ensure, however, that all the material concerning the regime is covered and that it flows well in terms of historical narrative.

Historian III (Reform Historian) - someone able to interpret cause and effect in history; generally the historian should be a good reader; This Historian must ensure, however, that all the material demonstrating the transition from one oppressive government to a less oppressive one is covered and that it flows well in terms of historical narrative.

Civil Rights Monitor - someone able to distinguish between what is purported and what is actual; this is an investigative journalist role - someone who can understand the current state of affairs in your country in terms of Society, Politics, Economy, and the Constitution.  Each aspect of the Civil Rights analysis may be given to a separate member of the group, but it is the Civil Rights Monitor's job to ensure that all portion of this section of the  project are complete and up-to-date.  The report must be the most current and cutting-edge possible; it is strongly recommended that they be well-attuned to current events worldwide.

Bibliographer - someone good at working with details and formatting; the Bibliographer is responsible for the two aspects of the Bibliography - the formal and the collected.  The formal Bibliography must follow the style guidelines recommended by the teacher. Be sure to use the school's official style guide references to see how to construct this properly.  The remainder of the Bibliography should simply be a neat and accessible accounting of all the research materials used by the group.

Once these roles have been assigned, have each member of the team explain their role to the rest of the team mates.  Once this is done, the archivist will take the sheet (this is called the groupwork sheet) to the teacher who will sign it and place a number of points in the upper left-hand corner.  The sheet is then given to the group Evaluator.

The following are suggested nations, though any group which wishes to do a different one may propose it to the teacher for approval (or rejection). 

     Spain or Portugal

     Argentina or Chile

     South Africa or Kenya

     Japan or South Korea

     East Germany or Poland

     Czech Republic or Hungary


Though the time frames may differ slightly for each of these nations, the central focus for each should be the oppressive regime and the time frames should emphasize the 20th century, except for the Civil Rights report which should emphasize the 21st century.  Consult the chart below to see what time period or key figures are appropriate for each topic:

Nation            Regime          Historian I       Historian II       Historian III

 Spain  Franco  pre-1936  1936 - 1975  post 1975
 Portugal  Salazar  pre-1932  1932 - 1968  post 1968
 Argentina  military junta  pre-1975  1975 - 1986  post 1986
 Chile  Pinochet  pre-1973  1973 - 1990  post 1990
 South Africa  apartheid  1600 - 1945  1945 - 1989  post 1989
 Kenya  colonial rule  1888 - 1945  1945 - 1963  post 1963
 Japan  WWII  1900 - 1936  1936 - 1945  post 1945
 South Korea  Occupation  pre-1910  1910 - 1953  post 1953
 East Germany  communism  pre-1945  1945 - 1989  post 1989
 Poland  communism  pre-1945  1945 - 1989  post 1989
 Czech Rep.  communism  pre-1945  1945 - 1989  post 1989
 Hungary  communism  pre-1945  1945 - 1989  post 1989


Recommended Viewing: (the following are a list of films and documentaries that may help create a better context for students who are unfamiliar with some of the issues faced by their countries)

Spain - Butterfly (1999), Pan's Labyrinth (2006)

Portugal -

Argentina - The Official Story (1985)

Chile - Missing (1982), Death and the Maiden (1995)

South Africa - A Dry White Season (1989), A World Apart (1988), Long Night's Journey Into Day (1999)

Kenya - The Kitchen Toto (1987)

Japan - Letters from Iwo Jima (2006)

South Korea -

East Germany - The Promise (1995), The Lives of Others (2006)

Poland -

Czech Republic - Unbearable Lightness of Being (1988), The Fireman's Ball (1967),

Hungary -  Sunshine (1999)