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Service Learning Joe Bandy Center for Teaching Vanderbilt University.

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Presentation on theme: "Service Learning Joe Bandy Center for Teaching Vanderbilt University."— Presentation transcript:

1 Service Learning Joe Bandy Center for Teaching Vanderbilt University

2 Introductions Students as Producers year In pairs, discuss – Experiences with Service Learning – Benefits – Challenges

3 Starting Points “Democracy has to be born anew every generation, and education is its midwife.” John Dewey, School and Society, National Service Learning Clearinghouse: National Service Learning Clearinghouse – “a teaching and learning strategy that integrates meaningful community service with instruction and reflection to enrich the learning experience, teach civic responsibility, and strengthen communities.” Janet S. Eyler (winner of the 2003 Thomas Ehrlich Faculty Award for Service Learning) and Dwight E. Giles, Jr.: – “a form of experiential education where learning occurs through a cycle of action and reflection as students... seek to achieve real objectives for the community and deeper understanding and skills for themselves. In the process, students link personal and social development with academic and cognitive development... experience enhances understanding; understanding leads to more effective action.”

4 Starting Points Service Learning, related to… – Community-based Teaching or Learning – Civic Education – Civic Engagement – Public Scholarship

5 Benefits: Students (Eyler, Giles, Stenson and Gray 2001) Learning Outcomes – Content learning – Application of knowledge to “the real world” – Understanding, problem-solving, critical thinking – Complexity and ambiguity Personal Outcomes – Personal efficacy, spiritual growth, and moral development – Interpersonal development, leadership and communication skills Social Outcomes – Reduced stereotypes and greater inter-cultural understanding – Social responsibility and citizenship skills – Continuing community engagement after graduation Career Development – Networking for learning and career opportunities Relationship with the Institution – Relationships with faculty – Satisfaction with college – Graduation rates

6 Benefits: Faculty, College, Community Faculty – Satisfaction with student learning – New avenues for research – Networking with faculty in other disciplines or institutions – Stronger commitment to one’s research College – Institutional commitment to the curriculum – Student retention – Community relations Community – Satisfaction with student participation – Human resources needed to achieve community goals – New energy, enthusiasm and perspectives – Community-university relations

7 Models Service-Based – One-time project – Optional assignment Problem-Based Capstone Internship Independent/Honors Action Research Multi-course Projects

8 Challenges Time commitment Ensuring positive community impact Ensuring student learning

9 Discussion: Solutions In groups of 3, each of you take 1 of these problems and discuss one potential solution: – Time commitment – Ensuring positive community impact – Ensuring student learning

10 Possible Solutions Time commitment – Clear goals – Staff/Faculty assistance, TA – Schedule flexibility for student participation, community too – Not reinventing the wheel – Resources, incentives for faculty engagement

11 Possible Solutions Time commitment – Center for Teaching – Public Service Offices – Community Partnership Databases

12 Possible Solutions Ensuring positive community impact – Use existing community relationships – Clear goals and expectations – Assessment and improvements – Rigorous needs & asset assessment

13 Possible Solutions Ensuring positive community impact – Assessing Community Needs – Building Trust through Reciprocity – Creative and Flexible Projects – Realistic Project Goals – Managing Community Expectations – Ensuring Continuity – Adhering to IRB Guidelines – Assessing Impacts

14 Possible Solutions (Saltmarsh, Hartley, & Clayton 2009) Democratic vs Technocratic Engagement – Power sharing Shared governance vs. University decision making – Stakeholder relationships Partnership vs. Consultant-Client – Solving problems Asset-based collaboration vs. Problem-based solution – Outcomes Stakeholder change vs. Stakeholder stasis

15 Possible Solutions Ensuring student learning – Student preparation – Student reflection – Student involvement in project planning

16 Possible Solutions Ensuring student learning – Content rigor – Community orientation – Safety precautions – Skills training – Ethics training – Logistical support – Assignments – Reflection – Project failure Unforeseen obstacles Confounding results

17 Further Resources Service Learning and Community Engagement teaching guide Service Learning and Community Engagement


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