Internship/Social Action Seminar

You are here

Course Information
Internship Seminar
Terms offered: 
Fall, Spring
Language of instruction: 
Contact Hours: 
20 hours in seminar + 80-100 hours in placement

Successful placement in the internship program with a complete internship application.

Additional student cost: 



IN/SO 395 is a two-fold course. It is an internship course which guides and supervises students during their internship in a Moroccan organization; it is also a Social Action Seminar which introduces students to the multifaceted environment of Moroccan NGOs. The Social Action seminar aims at increasing students' knowledge and awareness of civil society and social action in Morocco. It helps students understand the historical, socio-cultural, socio-political, economic, media, and international contexts of social action in Morocco.

A key aspect of this seminar is to underline the increasing proactive role assumed by civil society/NGOs in rights'-oriented politics and in political change in Morocco. 'Civil society' in Morocco represents an important non-State emerging actor, with a growing need for specialized skills and expertise.

Thanks to classroom discussions and students’ internships, students will hopefully grasp the linguistic, political, cultural, and international dimensions that impact the management of Moroccan organizations characterized by the increasing influence of western management concepts.

By interning in a Moroccan organization/university, conducting field work, interviewing Moroccan executives/employees/volunteers/professors/students, and sharing hands-on experiences in class, students will hopefully enhance their sense of social responsibility, field-work skills, and intercultural communication competence.

The course requires students to write an internship portfolio, including (i) an internship report, (ii) a field work report analyzing an aspect of their internship organization, and (iii) two field trip reports. 

(This course has been modified from a previously approved version. This modified version is being reviewed by the Curriculum Committee in 2015.)


Attendance policy: 

Class attendance is compulsory. Each student will be allowed only two unexcused absences throughout the course. For each unexcused absence beyond this there will be a reduction in the final grade. Students who are late to class on a regular basis will also receive a reduction in their final grade and/or disciplinary action.

Students should not exceed 2 absences in each (45 hours) content course.
Students should not exceed 4 absences in the (90 hours) Arabic language course.

Any additional absence would lower the grades as follows:
1 more absence = will lower the final grade by 5 %
2 more absences= will lower the final grade by 10 %
3 more absences = will lower the grade by 15 %
4 more absences = will lower the grade by 20 %

Any additional absences will continue to lower the final grade by 5% increments. 

Learning outcomes: 

At the end of the course students will be able to:

  • Become familiar with the concept of 'civil society' in Morocco
  • Be aware of the complexities of the Moroccan 'civil society', its development in recent history, and its valuable contribution to political change in Morocco
  • Understand the dynamics between the state's attempts at co-opting 'civil society' organizations and the latter's attempts at independent articulation
  • Comprehend the significance of three overlapping areas in rights'-oriented politics in Morocco: human rights, women's rights, and Amazigh's rights and how NGOs have influenced the decision making process in these three areas
  • Understand the factors – political and economic; international and domestic – that favored NGOs' significant influence in political change in the above three areas
  • Be aware of the history and circumstances of the ongoing political debate in Morocco, and hence of the dynamics in contemporary Middle Eastern and North African history and society
  • Increase their self-confidence in leading/facilitating class discussions as well as in articulating clarification questions to Moroccan organizations’ executives, employees, volunteers, etc.  (during their internship and field trips).
Method of presentation: 

Class discussions of assigned readings: At the beginning of each session, a group leader will be appointed to present the salient issues of each chapter, and then facilitate the discussion; guest-speaker lectures; students’ oral progress reports about their internship experience and field-work projects.

Required work and form of assessment: 
  • Active Participation - 10%
  • Quizzes - 10%
  • Weekly 'Internship Experience' and 'Field Work' Oral Reports - 10%
  • Mid-Term Exam (approximately 1,000 word essay) - 20%
  • Internship Supervisor's Report on Intern's Work - 20%
  • Final Internship Portfolio - 30%
    • Internship Report (10-15 double-spaced pages) - 15%
    • Field Work Report (approximately 1,000 words) - 5%
    • Weekly Internship Experience Journal Entries (2 double spaced pages max.) - 5%
    • Field Trip Reports (approximately 500 words for each report - 5%

Details of Required Work

Attendance, Active Participation, and Quizzes
Class attendance is mandatory in accordance with IES Rabat attendance policy. Students will be graded on their

  • Reading the assigned chapters before coming to class
  • Effectiveness in facilitating class discussions
  • Involvement in class discussions

Unannounced quizzes may also be given to check students' preparedness for class.

Weekly 'Internship Experience' and 'Field Work' Oral Reports
Students are required to give weekly progress reports on their internship experience/project and weekly progress reports on their field work project.

Mid-Term Exam
Essay of approximately 1,000 words in response to a question related to the assigned readings covered and discussed in class.

Internship Supervisor's Report on Intern's Work
The Internship Supervisor Report is an evaluation of the intern's performance mainly in terms of achievement of goals set at the beginning of the internship. This report also evaluates the intern using the following six criteria: (i) personal characteristics (e.g. commitment, open-mindedness, maturity); (ii) interpersonal skills (e.g. ability to establish good rapport and to display initiative and resourcefulness), (iii) professional responsibilities (e.g. attendance, punctuality, effectiveness and efficiency, ability to meet deadlines), (iv) cross-cultural communication skills (e.g. tolerance for others' values and viewpoints),  (v) adaptability (e.g. ability to alter activities to accommodate change), and (vi) progress throughout the internship.

Final Internship Portfolio

  • Internship Report (10-15 double-spaced pages) relating the student's internship experience/project. Students are requested to check Moodle for the required Table of Contents, format, and cover page model
  • Weekly Internship Experience Essays (of approximately 300 words) relating and reflecting on students' experience on the field. Students will choose a theme for each weekly essay
  • Two Field Trip Reports (of approximately 500 words for each report) relating what the student learned from the NGO visit
  • Field Work Report (of approximately 1,000 words) analyzing a pre-approved problem of the student's choice. This problem must be an aspect that the student has chosen to investigate by studying relevant internship site documentation and/or by interviewing employees; beneficiaries; administrators; etc. One of the major data collection instruments to be used is the field interview.** A copy of the field interview must be included in the Internship Portfolio's Appendix. The Field Work Report must:
    • State the problem investigated by the student;
    • Specify the field work purpose;
    • Explain the rationale behind choosing to investigate that problem;
    • Describe the methodology used in collecting and analyzing the data;
    • Give the findings of the investigation;
    • Draw conclusions from these findings,
    • State the limitations of the field work, and  finally
    • Give recommendations for overcoming the problem investigated.

**Interview protocol is pending IRB approval by IES Abroad.


  1. Any clarification questions about the course requirements must be asked well in advance of the exam week.
  2. Any clarification questions about the Internship Portfolio must be asked before Week 10.
  3. A copy of your internship portfolio must also be sent to the Center staff who will print out your portfolios, have them bound, and put them in the library for future students to consult.
Week Topic Content

Introduction to the IN/SO 395 Seminar

  • Getting to know one another: Students and professor introduce themselves
  • Course description
  • Method of presentation
  • Learning outcomes
  • Internship placements and internship program rules
  • Required work and form of assessment
2 Civil Society and Political Change in Morocco
  • Chapter 1: Introduction (20 pages)
  • Chapter 2: Civil Society in Morocco: Literature Survey (6 pages)
    • (26 pages of assigned reading)
3 Civil Society and Political Change in Morocco
  • Chapter 4: The Pressure for Public Space (1985-93)

    • (20 pages of assigned reading)
4 Civil Society and Political Change in Morocco
  • Chapter 5 (pages 81-100): The Consolidation and Mobilization of Civil Society under the New System (1993-2002)

    • (20 pages of assigned reading)
5 Civil Society and Political Change in Morocco
  • Chapter 5 (pages 100-121): The Consolidation and Mobilization of Civil Society under the New System (1993-2002)
  • Take Home Midterm Exam
    • (20 pages of assigned reading)
6 Civil Society and Political Change in Morocco
  • Chapter 6: The State's Discursive and Strategic Reactions

    • (47 pages of assigned reading)
7 Civil Society and Political Change in Morocco
  • Chapter 7: Summary and Conclusion: Civil Society, Hegemony and the Public Sphere in Morocco

    • (11 pages of assigned reading)

Visit to NGO (ADFM) + Report

9 Visit to NGO (AMDH) + Report  

Review Session

  • Review of Internship Portfolio components
  • Students' portfolio progress reports
11 Students' Portfolio Submission



Required readings: 
  • Sater, James N. (2007). Civil Society and Political Change in Morocco. Routledge