Election Academy Course Descriptions


Election Academy currently is not in session. Dates below refer to the previous session for your reference.

Spring 2016 Session

Course One: From Idea to Ballot
Let the Voting Begin

March 23, 2016

In addition to an overview of the Election Academy, students will learn the fundamentals of candidate filing, including contests on the ballot and requirements specific to being candidates in those contests. Students will also expand their knowledge of candidate statement and ballot designation rules and regulations.

Course One Continued: From Idea to Ballot
Let the Voting Begin

March 24, 2016

This class will cover many areas of campaign finance, including filing requirements, deadlines, and legal regulations. Students will understand the various campaign finance resources, including Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) Regulations, FPPC manuals, and the Political Reform Act. Students will also be trained on how to use NetFile, the Orange County Registrar of Voters’ new electronic filing system.

Course Two: Ballot Blueprint

March 30, 2016

This class will walk students through the process of building a ballot, from start to finish. Students will learn about ballot types, random draw, rotations, translations, recording and producing the audio ballot, and the development of the sample ballot. Students will also have the opportunity to create their own ballot using the Orange County Registrar of Voters’ ballot generation software.

Course Three: Connecting With Voters

April 6, 2016

This class will feature a media panel of reporters, bloggers, former candidates, and consultants who will discuss media coverage surrounding elections. Students will understand the role and importance of media in campaigns and elections from a variety of perspectives. Students will learn about the tools available for staying in touch and obtaining information, including the ocvote.com website and various social networking websites. This class will also cover the ways that candidates and campaigns can gather and use information that is available at the Orange County Registrar of Voters, such as maps and the voter file.

Course Four: Election Day Countdown

April 13, 2016

This class will cover the numerous components that go into producing a successful election. Students will gain an understanding of the voter registration process, vote-by-mail ballot processing and statistics, poll worker recruitment and outreach, recruiting poll sites, and early voting. Students will view a demonstration of the equipment used in Orange County to process vote-by-mail ballots.

Course Five: Election Day

April 20, 2016

This class will cover the numerous facets of Election Day, and students will walk away with an understanding of the complexity and size of Orange County’s operations. Students will learn about Election Day security, the Registrar of Voters Rapid Deployment Team and other in-field personnel, phone banks and voter contact, media and communications, and the various components of the County’s Hart Voting System. Students will have the opportunity to participate in a modified poll worker training class, which includes setting up a poll site and processing voters.

Course Six: Results Making it Count

April 27, 2016

This class will cover the myriad of activities that occur after the polls have closed on election night. Students will learn about security procedures, the process of closing a poll site, the handling of voting equipment and supplies, and how the office receives and processes ballots. Students will participate in a mock election where they will process ballots and assist in counting votes.

Course Seven: It's Official Certified and Accurate

May 4, 2016

This class will walk students through the post-Election Day activities that lead up to the certification of election results. Students will learn about the various state-mandated audits and regulations, how provisional ballots are handled, the rights and responsibilities of election observers, the recount process, and election billing. Students will participate in a demonstration of a one percent manual tally.