CARE - Graduate

What is action research?

Action research addresses immediate practical problems. It aims to improve organizations' effectiveness by informing strategies, practices, or knowledge of the contexts in which organizations operate.

The Community Action Research Experiences (CARE) inspires and equips students to use their capacities to lead social change for community good.

T. Denny Sanford School CARE Program from ASU Video Production on Vimeo.


What is the CARE program?

The Community Action Research Experiences (CARE) program is a year-long concentration (Fall and Spring semesters) that provides a rare opportunity for graduate students:

  • to gain valuable professional and leadership experience
  • to have extensive contact with faculty and community professionals
  • to develop high quality recommendations for future employment or professional school applications
  • to apply your intellectual skills to a practical project that contributes to community improvement
  • to work with a small close knit and diverse group of talented peers

The core of the CARE program involves community organizations, students, and faculty working together to address research questions that are important to the community organizations. The action research projects represent the service provided to the community partners. Collaborations are intended to enhance organizations' evidence-informed policy and practice and to increase students' capacity for leadership in community improvement.

Is CARE right for you?

  • Students in The Sanford School Ph.D. program in Family and Human Development may apply with the approval of their Masters/Doctoral Supervisory Chair. Students may explore the possibility of using their CARE program project as the basis for their masters thesis.
  • Graduate students in other ASU units may apply.
  • Do you have a GPA of 3.5 or above? A previous research methods course is also desirable.
  • Are you willing to invest the time to being part of a personally challenging year-long leadership development program that combines in-depth coursework, developing a collaboration with a community organization, faculty mentoring, and managing a major project to completion?
  • Do you want to participate in a close-knit community of peers dedicated to conducting worthwhile community action research?
  • Do you want to gain a deeper understanding of yourself and of the kinds of leadership qualities needed to tackle complex problems in the real world?
  • Do you want to explore how you might integrate social changemaking with your future career goals?

If so, then the CARE program is for you!

Do you want more information or to talk about it?

Contact the coordinator, Dr. Larry Dumka, at