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The Role of Civic Engagement in Contemporary Higher Education National University of Ireland Galway Robert G. Bringle, PhD PhilD Chancellor’s Professor.

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Presentation on theme: "The Role of Civic Engagement in Contemporary Higher Education National University of Ireland Galway Robert G. Bringle, PhD PhilD Chancellor’s Professor."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Role of Civic Engagement in Contemporary Higher Education National University of Ireland Galway Robert G. Bringle, PhD PhilD Chancellor’s Professor of Psychology and Philanthropic Studies IUPUI Center for Service and Learning

2 IUPUI Three-way partnership: Indiana U., Purdue U., & city of Indianapolis Metropolitan campus: 30,000 commuting students (who work a lot) Professional education: highly decentralized campus Campus mission includes “Civic Engagement” Infrastructure –Center for Research and Learning –Center for Teaching and Learning –Center for Service and Learning

3 Center for Service & Learning Office of Service Learning –curricular Office of Community Service –voluntary service Office of Community Work Study –community-service employment Office of Neighborhood Partnerships –geographically focused engagement

4 Major Shifts in Faculty Work FromTo Focus on faculty Focus on learning Autonomous Building institutions faculty Individualistic Collaborative Discipline-based Interdisciplinary University is Civic engagement separate from community

5 Scholarship Reconsidered: Boyer Discovery Integration Communication (dissemination, publication, teaching) Application

6 Boyer’s Civic Engagement The scholarship of engagement means connecting the rich resources of the university to our most pressing social, civic, and ethical problems, to our children, to our schools, to our teachers, and to our cities. -Boyer (1996)

7 Boyer’s Civic Engagement What is needed is not just more programs, but a larger purpose, a larger sense of mission, a larger clarity of direction. Ultimately, the scholarship of engagement also means creating a special climate in which the academic and civic cultures communicate more continuously and more creatively with each other.

8 Engagement, Outreach, and Public Service Civic Education Civic Engagement Community engagement Community-based Learning Community Service Engaged Scholarship Experiential Learning Outreach Participatory Action Research Partnerships Professional Service Public Scholar Public Service Scholarship of Engagement Scholarship on Engagement Service Service Learning Student Engagement Voluntary Service

9 Faculty and Student Activities In the Community

10 Differentiation of Terms Community Involvement –Defined by location –Occurs in the community Civic Engagement –Defined by location and process –Occurs in and with the community –Demonstrates democratic values of participation –Impact + Partnerships

11 Faculty and Student Activities In the Community

12 Community-Based Learning Not all community-based instruction is service learning Field work experiences (e.g., Museum Studies, Anthropology)—NUIG Connect Degree Cooperative Education Internship Practicum Service Learning Pre-professional field experiences: Clinicals, Student Teaching—NUIG Professional Experience Programme Applied Learning Experiential Learning Student Engagement

13 IUPUI’s Requirements for Experiential Education 1.Content 2.Activity in the community 3.Reflection activities 4.Assessment 5.Record

14 Distinctions Among Approaches to Service & Experiential Learning RecipientBENEFICIARY Provider LearningServiceFOCUS SERVICE LEARNING COMMUNITY SERVICE FIELD EDUCATION VOLUNTEERISMINTERNSHIP (Furco, 1996)

15 Definition Service learning is a course-based, credit-bearing educational experience in which students a) participate in an organized service activity that meets identified community needs, and b) reflect on the service activity in such a way as to gain further understanding of course content, a broader appreciation of the discipline, and an enhanced sense of personal values and civic responsibility. (Bringle & Hatcher, 1995)

16 Key Elements of SL Reflection –“Perplexity” (Dewey, 1933) –Activities to structure learning from the service experience Reciprocity –Partnerships –Dialogue to structure the service experience Civic Education –Serving to learn –Learning to serve

17 But, in too many cases, our students “… had the experience, but missed the meaning.” T.S. Eliot, Four Quartets (1943)

18 From A Student’s Journal Today I got to the nursing home at 2:00. Talked to some ladies. Passed out popcorn at the movie. Went home at 4:00 Conrad & Hedin, 1990

19 Guidelines for Reflection Clearly links service experience to learning objectives Is structured in terms of expectations, assessment criteria Occurs regularly throughout semester Instructor provides feedback Includes opportunity to explore, clarify, and alter values (Bringle & Hatcher, 1999)

20 Reflection: The Key Component Reflection as a means to learning Reflection as a basis of assessing learning Reflection as process to be studied Reflection as source of products to use in research

21 Why do we need more than a vocational education? In part, because we live more than a vocational life: we live a larger civic life and we have to be educated for it. - D. Mathews

22 What is Good Citizenship? Battistoni (2002) Civic Professionalism Social Responsibility Social Justice Connected Knowing: Ethic of Care Public Leadership Public Intellectual Engaged/Public Scholarship

23 Accountability for Civic Outcomes “Educationally-meaningful service” –CSL phrase, but what does it mean??? CSL program evaluation and improvement Institutional assessment of learning outcomes –Every graduate will write a narrative… “North star” –Civic-minded Professional (Hatcher, 2008) –Civic-minded Graduate

24 Working Definition of CMG A civic-minded graduate is one who a)is formally educated and b)has the capacity and orientation to work with others c)in a democratic way d)to improve the community. CSL, in process

25 Self-Identity Academics, Pre-Professional Knowledge & Skills Civic Attitudes & Action Civic-Minded Graduate

26 CSL North Star Civic-Minded Graduate Personal Integration Academic Knowledge and Technical Skills Knowledge of Civil Society (e.g., Volunteer Opportunities, Nonprofit Organizations) Knowledge of Contemporary Social Issues Listening and Communication Skills Diversity Skills Self-Efficacy Behavioral Intentions → Civic Behavior

27 Uses of CMG Reflection in Service Learning Classes Evaluation across Service Learning Classes Program Evaluation across CSL programs Institutional Assessment of Civic Learning

28 Faculty and Student Activities In the Community

29 Professional Service Service applies a faculty member’s knowledge, skills, and expertise as an educator, a member of a discipline or profession, and a participant in an institution to benefit students, the institution, the discipline or profession, and the community in a manner consistent with the mission of the university. Service @ Indiana University: Defining, documenting, and evaluating. (

30 Advancement And Tenure Are Decisions About The Academic Nature Of Work There are differences between professional service as scholarship and Doing good Doing one’s job well Administrative work Clerical work Evaluation for a merit increase Collegiality Citizenship

31 Professional Service as Academic Work Service documented as academic work Evidence of significance and impact from multiple sources Evidence of individual contributions Evidence of growth (e.g., leadership) Dissemination through publications, including peer-reviewed academic ones Dissemination to peers, clients, patients Peer review of professional service

32 Faculty and Student Activities In the Community

33 Participatory Action Research Collaboration between the campus and community Democratization of knowledge that acknowledges different ways of knowing and different types of knowledge Social change through actions based on the research that promote social justice. Strand et al., 2003

34 Participatory Action Research Focus on the adequacy of the process as well as the outcomes Peer review by multiple stakeholders, including academic Outcomes for multiple stakeholders Dissemination to multiple stakeholders

35 Engaged Research Can you imagine that your discipline can inform your professional work in the community?  Professional service, application, scholarly engagement Can you imagine that your professional work in the community can inform your discipline?  Scholarship of service, scholarship of engagement, applied research, engaged scholarship

36 Differentiation of Terms Doing An Activity –Teaching, Research, or Service Well-informed –Scholarly Teaching –Scholarly Discovery –Scholarly Service Contributing to Peer-reviewed Knowledge –Scholarship of Teaching –Scholarship of Service –Scholarship of Discovery

37 Scholarship Products, some academic Significance and impact –To a knowledge base –To a discipline/profession –To the mission of the university Peer review –Internal –External

38 Who Cares about Civic Outcomes? Practitioners & Colleagues Funders Agencies Community Partners & Civic Leaders Employers Executive Leadership

39 AAC&U’s Survey of Employers Best methods for ensuring that graduates have knowledge/skills: Internship/community-based project where students apply college learning in real-world setting. 83% “Very Effective” and “Fairly Effective” Senior project incorporating depth of knowledge, problem-solving, writing, and analytic reasoning skills.79% Essay tests60% Electronic portfolio56% Multiple Choice Exams32%

40 NCA Criterion Five: Engagement and Service Learn from constituencies and analyze capacity to serve Commitment and capacity to engage and provide service Demonstrate responsiveness to dependent constituencies Internal and external constituencies value the organization’s services

41 Fundamental Issue! In what significant ways is the intellectual culture of YOUR CAMPUS incompatible with programs that embrace civic engagement, service learning, or engaged scholarship?

42 Two Types of Engagement Institutionalization Of Other Types Of Engagement High Low Institutionalization of Service Learning Research I Liberal Arts Community Colleges Land Grant Boyer’s New American College Low High

43 To institutionalize service-learning effectively, service-learning must be viewed not as a discrete “program” but as a means to accomplish other important goals for the campus. -Furco & Holland

44 Institutionalization “The heart of institutionalization may be summarized in a few words: intentionality, coherence, and commitment" Furco and Holland, 2004, p. 38

45 Intentionality Leadership at all levels Service learning and student affairs are means to a sets of ends Answering the “why” question Coaching faculty and staff to produce well-designed learning experiences Role of assessment, particularly of the civic outcomes

46 Coherence Strategic versus ad hoc Centralized versus decentralized Engaged departments/schools Across ALL facets of the campus Multi-level (grad & undergrad) versus single level Multi-modality versus one

47 Commitment Funding Infrastructure Faculty and staff development Linking to other campus initiatives

48 Issues with Civic Engagement Disorganizes an institution organized around the disciplines Warrants interdisciplinarity when structures are not established for that Warrants team work when reward structures focus on individuals Requires institutional adaptation Expects democratic processes and lessons from a non-democratic institution

49 Walshok Are you asking faculty to account for the PUBLIC MEANING and impact of their scholarship beyond the discipline or profession? How is civic engagement presented as an INTELLECTUAL IMPERATIVE? How is the institution INTENTIONALLY supporting faculty (e.g., enabling infrastructures) with an interest in civic engagement activities?

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