'Staff Ride' in Vietnam offers students immersive learning

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

For 10 days in early January, nearly 40 Duke undergraduate and graduate students, Duke Political Science faculty members and alumni traced the path of the 1968 Tet Offensive through Vietnam.

Their trip was an academic adaptation of the “staff ride” format the U.S. military uses to educate leaders about a specific historical campaign or conflict, examining the event and its effects from historical, strategic and political perspectives.

But the Duke travelers weren’t just along for the ride: each was responsible for conducting advance research on an individual who played a role in the Tet Offensive, and for presenting a first-person briefing from the perspective of the person they studied.

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