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Institute for Democracy & Higher Education

Democracy Matters: A Guide to Non-Statutory Barriers to Voting

The Institute for Higher Education’s research focuses on all aspects of voting and political engagement on college campuses, with special attention to the institutional factors and campus climates that can affect political engagement. Just as important are technical, non-statutory barriers to voting that may frustrate and deter students who want to register and cast their ballots but may run into a number of issues unique to voters on college campuses.

In this guide, produced in partnership with Tisch College's Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning & Engagement (CIRCLE), we walk you through the sometimes-hidden barriers students face and offer strategies for overcoming them. The guide tackles challenges in several different areas: election administration, voter registration, the voting process—including Election Day)—and institutional discretion, offering concrete steps and solutions. The guide also includes a workbook that allows leaders to track their progress and provides additional resources.