What is Service Learning?
Service learning integrates community service into an academic course. It allows you to understand the relationship between theory and practice by making connections between your community service experience and your course readings, lecture, research, and classroom discussion.
Learning through experience provides richer learning opportunities. It makes courses more relevant and interesting. It often results in increased information retention and higher grades!
Benefits of Service Learning
- Enhances academic experiences and self-confidence
- Sharpens critical thinking skills
- Broadens awareness of community opportunities
- Develops community networks
- Increases sense of community "connectedness" and civic engagement
- Strengthens resumes and/or graduate school applications
Characteristics of Service Learning
- Engages students in responsible and challenging community service that is relevant to the course learning objectives and serves the needs of the community.
- Emphasizes active learning in different environments.
- Allows students to reflect critically on their experiences.
- Is integrated into the course and not an "add-on" or extra work. Service learning faculty design courses so that the out-of-class time required for a service learning course is equivalent to that required for a non-service learning course.
- Is not receiving credit for doing community service. You will be graded on the learning related to the service, not on the service itself.
Service Learning Resources