Here you'll find answers to some common questions about the topics below. If your question isn't among them, please contact us and we'll do our best to get back to you quickly.
What is iCivics?
iCivics is a web-based education project designed to teach students civics and inspire them to be active participants in our democracy.
Who’s behind iCivics?
Justice Sandra Day O’Connor spearheaded the project in 2009 out of concern that students are not getting the information and tools they need for civic participation, and that civics teachers need better materials and support. The project now has volunteer teams in every state. To find out more about the full iCivics team, visit the links below:
Who can use iCivics?
Anyone can access the iCivics website, and all of our resources are FREE. We hope that teachers, students, and parents will find it especially useful.
What do I need in order to to use iCivics?
All you need is a functioning computer, Internet access, and Adobe Flash Player 10+ (which is available as a free download here). In a classroom setting, most of our games are best experienced in a multi-computer classroom or computer lab. Some games, like Supreme Decision, work well with a single computer and projector.
What internet browsers does iCivics support?
Recommended Browser Versions
Minimum Browser Versions:
What operating systems does iCivics support?
iCivics.org will work on Macs and PCs. For the technically inclined, below is the list of operating systems that will work with iCivics.
My game isn’t loading, or all I’m seeing is a white game screen. What’s going on?
iCivics games require Flash Player 10.0 or higher. If your game isn’t loading or the screen is blank, download the latest version of Flash Player here: http://www.adobe.com/products/flashplayer/. It’s free and only takes a few moments.
Can I download the games to my computer?
No, our games are only available on iCivics.org. But some iCivics games are available on CD, which you can purchase here. Pocket Law Firm is available for free on iTunes here.
Can I download the lesson plans and game guides?
Yes, all the curricular content can be downloaded in PDF form. Some materials require a free teacher account. Any work that was created by or for iCivics.org is copyrighted by iCivics Inc. These pages may also contain material in which the copyright is held by the creator or someone to whom he/she has assigned the copyright. Use of these materials is limited to personal study, teaching, and research. For more on our terms, please visit: http://www.icivics.org/terms.
Can I play iCivics games on my iPad?
Pocket Law Firm, a free version of our popular game Do I Have A Right?, was developed specifically for iPad and is available through iTunes here. iCivics’ newest offering, Drafting Board, is also compatible with iPad. In addition, iCivics web quests can be navigated using iPad, and all iCivics lesson plans are in PDF format and can be viewed on iPad. The rest of our games use flash and are not currently compatible with iPad, but we are working to make all of our games accessible, so please stay tuned!
I’m a teacher and have never visited iCivics before. Where should I start?
Just click the blue “Teachers, this way!” button at the top of the screen. Then
you’ll see our Curriculum Finder, Curriculum Units, links to lesson plans and webquests, and even a special video welcome from Justice O’Connor!
What major topics does iCivics cover?
iCivics has games and lesson plans on major civics topics: Foundation of Government, Road to the Constitution, the Constitution, Legislative Branch, Executive Branch, Judicial Branch, State and Local Government, Citizenship and Participation, Politics and Public Policy, Media and Influence, Civil Rights, International Affairs, Persuasive Writing, County Solutions, and Government and the Market. We’re constantly adding units, so please visit www.icivics.org/teachers for the latest!
I would like to use iCivics games, but I’m not great with new technology. Help!
iCivics games were designed for novices and serious gamers alike. Each game includes a printable game guide, an in-game tutorial, and a help button if you get stuck. The important part is to play a few iCivics games and get the feel for them.
I like the content I see, but I don’t know if it will fit with my state’s curriculum standards. How can I find out?
All iCivics games, lesson plans, and webquests have been linked to standards from all 50 states, Washington DC, and the USVI. You can search iCivics content by a specific standard by using the “Curriculum Finder” function on www.icivics.org/teachers. If you’ve already found the lesson plan you want, just click on the “Related Standards” link at the top right of every lesson plan to see what standards it covers.
What is a webquest?
iCivics webquests are an engaging way to learn about specific civics topics. They include reading and questions with links to specific web resources that help students see how the topic relates to the real world. Webquests can be used by the whole class with a projector or interactive white board or by students working individually on their own computers.
How comprehensive are iCivics lesson plans?
iCivics lesson plans are written by veteran teachers who have ease and functionality in mind. Individual activities are easy to manage, self-contained, and there is always something you can collect from students at the end of the period. Lesson materials are visually appealing and written in a conversational tone to foster students’ interest. They teach the material in the context of problems and issues that are relevant to students. You won't have to search for supplementary readings or type up a last-minute worksheet. Just print the materials, follow the Step-By-Step instructions, and teach!
Why should I create an iCivics teacher account?
A teacher account allows you to manage iCivics resources and track your students’ progress. iCivics accounts are free and take only a few minutes to set up. With a teacher account, you can establish virtual classrooms on iCivics.org, give your students assignments, track student progress, and manage class discussions.
How do I create an account?
Fill out the simple online form, available here: http://www.icivics.org/user/register. Once you confirm your account, you’ll be ready to start planning your classroom!
Any work that was created by or for iCivics.org is copyrighted by iCivics Inc. These pages may also contain material in which the copyright is held by the creator or someone to whom he/she has assigned the copyright. Use of these materials is limited to personal study, teaching, and research. For more on our terms, please visit: http://www.icivics.org/terms.
What are the most popular games?
iCivics games have been played more than one million times by more than one million students throughout the country. Currently, our two most popular games are Do I Have A Right? and Executive Command. Check out all of our games here: http://www.icivics.org/games.
How long do iCivics games take to play?
Several games only take 5-15 minutes to play. These include:
Some games take a little longer. Those requiring 15-30 minutes include:
Many iCivics games are detailed and challenge students with multiple levels of play. Those games that require 30 or more minutes to play include:
Are students rewarded for improving their iCivics skills?
Students gain achievements, compete on leader boards, and earn points that they can use to vote on different “Impact Projects.” Students can make a real-world difference because the Impact Project that earns the most collective points will receive a $1,000 donation from iCivics each quarter.
What are avatars?
When students create their accounts, they can customize their online personas however they like. As they play more games and earn more Impact Points, they can earn rewards that will let them customize their avatars in unique ways.
Does iCivics only do games?
No, iCivics conducts training sessions for educators and helps promote civics education through the mass media, too. For the latest news from iCivics, click here: http://www.icivics.org/news.
I’d like to donate to iCivics. Will my contribution be tax-deductible?
Yes! iCivics is a registered 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization. Your gift will directly support the development of online, interactive civic education resources. To make a donation online, please visit http://www.icivics.org/donate.
I am interested in volunteering with iCivics. How can I do that?
All local iCivics outreach events are currently coordinated through iCivics State Coordinators. We encourage interested volunteers to contact their State Coordinator for information about upcoming events and other volunteer opportunities. Please feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org with your home-state information and we will provide you with your iCivics State Coordinator’s contact information.
I have an idea for a cool new game. How can I share it?
Simply fill out the online form, available here: http://www.icivics.org/contact.
How can I find out about news from iCivics?
Sign up for our mailing list using our online form: http://www.icivics.org/contact. We email members program updates and iCivics news every month or so, since we know you get a lot of email already.
Do you have an infrequently asked question?
Email us at email@example.com and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible!