Online Resources and Programs for Civic Education

Many providers listed in the Roundtable’s briefing on High-Impact Civic Education offer high-quality online resources. Several others have launched new offerings or have curated their materials for online use. Please alert the Roundtable’s Adam Kissel ( to additional resources.

The National Constitution Center has just started daily classes on the Constitution: “daily live constitutional conversations for middle school, high school, and college students, available through Zoom, and accessible on home computer, laptop, or phone,” for eight weeks starting March 24. The Center offers many additional resources focused on the Constitution and where scholars agree and disagree on how to interpret it.

At Hillsdale College Online a new 25-lecture course, The Great American Story: A Land of Hope, “explores the history of America as a land of hope founded on high principles. In presenting the great triumphs and achievements of our nation’s past, as well as the shortcomings and failures, it offers a broad and unbiased study of the kind essential to the cultivation of intelligent patriotism.” Hillsdale offers many additional courses aimed at adult learners.

Also for college students, the Jack Miller Center lists scholars willing to virtually guest lecture and has curated high-quality video presentations and other online resources. Other government and civics courses are available through Khan Academy and on the EdX platform (most notable are Princeton professor Robert George’s courses on Constitutional Interpretation and Civil Liberties).

Mount Vernon reminds us that we can go on virtual tours and learn from digital images of historic spaces. Lesson plans help guide students to use a 20-question worksheet for analyzing historic places including Mount Vernon in Virginia and Independence Hall in Philadelphia. Similarly, students and parents can enjoy the Monticello digital classroom, American Battlefield Trust’s Civil War Curriculum, Colonial Williamsburg’s resource library, and an extremely well-produced collection of five videos that provide a tour of Washington, D.C., the We the People Constitution Tour, produced by NBC and the U.S. Capitol Historical Society.

In addition to the civics games at iCivics, it offers Tips for Remote Classroom Learning and civics lesson plans in a new toolkit. On March 31, iCivics and the Center for Election Science will host a parent-centered webinar on Teaching Your Kids About Democracy.

The Bill of Rights Institute provides lesson plans based on primary sources as well as a “comprehensive digital course on History, Government & Economics” called Documents of Freedom.

For a wealth of historic documents, visit Founders Online at the National Archives and the wealth of resources at the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, which now offers free access to remote learning resources.

The Ashbrook Center has curated its Teaching American History resources to identify the ones best suited to online teaching.

The Harlan Institute offers lesson plans on Supreme Court cases. It also has just offered free access to the 11-hour video library created for the new book, An Introduction to Constitutional Law: 100 Supreme Court Cases Everyone Should Know. Students can sign up at: (instructions here).

Annenberg Classroom’s resources include videos of Supreme Court justices teaching about the Constitution. Additional high-quality videos are online at Prager University. Don’t miss the PBS-quality three-video series with Judge Douglas Ginsburg, A More or Less Perfect Union, produced by the Free to Choose Network.

National History Day teaching resources include a variety of materials on American history. The Center for Civic Education also has a variety of lesson plans on America’s Founders and topics such as Women’s History Month.

Certell offers entire online courses with free social studies content. 

Relevant podcasts include the Originalism Podcast hosted by the Georgetown Center for the Constitution, the Civics 101 Podcast, and the 60 Second Civics Podcast.

See also the Thomas B. Fordham Institute’s lists of home-learning resources including and beyond civics, including top educational YouTube channels such as Liberty’s Kids and top podcasts for kids including History Chicks.