Professional Development

Gain practical skills, tools, and strategies with our professional development workshops and educational resources.

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Why Close Up?

Drawing on almost 50 years of experience in issue-centered education and nonpartisan instruction, Close Up now offers professional development trainings and classroom resources that provide teachers and school districts with the tools and strategies to engage students in meaningful discourse about current controversial issues.

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A comprehensive approach to creating meaningful discussion in your classroom.

Onsite professional development sessions are available for middle school and high school educators across the country in half-day, full-day, and multi-session formats. Sample session topics include:


  • Framing Controversial Public Issues and Forming a Classroom Community: How can teachers develop an inclusive classroom culture and build competencies for engaging respectfully with diverse perspectives?
  • Principles and Practices for Debate and Deliberation: What different formats can teachers use to foster informed and constructive debate?
  • Integrating Controversial Issues into Your Classroom: How can teachers and administrators use the Close Up in Class library to build a comprehensive curricular sequence in their school or district?
  • Media Literacy and Citizenship: How can teachers navigate concerns over social media and “fake news” and help students engage in meaningful discussions about current issues and events?
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Empowering teachers nationwide to facilitate positive and productive conversations with students.

Teachers gain concrete tools to facilitate civil classroom discussions on current controversial issues, effective strategies for promoting inclusion and collaboration, techniques to employ when civil discourse breaks down, and classroom-ready resources to inform and guide student thinking. All sessions can be adapted based on school curricula, objectives, and grade levels.


To customize your own professional development workshop for your school or district, please complete the form below and we will be in touch shortly. The average session lasts three hours and pricing varies by location and the number of teachers that plan to participate.

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