“Pure” Service-Learning

These are courses that send students out into the community to serve. These courses have as their intellectual core the idea of service to communities by students, volunteers, or engaged citizens. They are not typically lodged in any one discipline.

Example: California State University at Monterey Bay
Service Learning 200: Introduction to Service in Multicultural Communities:
Course Focus: Youth and Elderly

Purpose: To prepare students for active and responsible community participation. To learn the skills, knowledge and competencies necessary for this type of participation, students will engage in an on-going process of service and reflection throughout the semester.

Community-Based Assignment: With faculty guidance, students will choose a service site that will allow them to learn about themselves and their community. For a minimum of three hours a week, for 10 weeks, students will be engaged in the work of a local community agency, school, or other organization. In addition to hands on work, time at the agency site will be spent observing, listening, and engaging in dialogue with community members.
One of the purposes of the community placement is to afford students direct experience in a community or sector of a community with which they do not have previous experience, and which they may have initially perceived as ‘other.’ The topics this section will focus on are infants, children, young people and people who are elderly. Some course readings, class discussions and activities and all placements for this section will focus on these topics. Several community agencies have agreed to serve as site placements for this section. Students will have the opportunity to learn more about them from class discussions and from the Service Learning Placement catalog distributed the third week of September. Students will be able to meet with agency staff at the Placement Fair held September 20.
Time spent in the classroom and in the community is of equal importance.

Related Assignment: Weekly journal, three service learning projects (one per month) with related essays. Final group service presentation (to be designed by students in conjunction with faculty)


Sample Assignments from Other Courses:

Keith Morton, PSP 301 Community Service in American Culture.
Service Component: Students develop and implement a plan for rehabilitating a house. Students form part of one of the following work groups: design and construction, fundraising, communication, worker recruitment and coordination, strategy and policy, and documentary and history.
Related Assignments: Students complete a final paper or project in which they explore in depth how they understand the work they’ve done and whether this work constitutes a service to the community or how the class can best serve the Smith Hill community.

Lacretia Johnson, CPSP 259, General Service-learning in College Park Scholars.
Service Component: Students are required to engage in a minimum of 20 hours of documented service with a service agency or organization.
Related Assignments: Journals, reading reports, and a final report synthesizing the service experience.

Service-Learning: Henrik Kibak and Darcie Warden, ESSP/SL 200, Introduction to Service in Multicultural Communities. Section 4: Disease and the Environment
Service Component: Students will complete 30 hours of service at a community health organization working to prevent communicable diseases.
Service Component: Journal assignments and a final presentation

Service-Learning: Larry Taylor and Debra Nitschke-Shaw, HR 399 Service Learning Honors Seminar.
Service Component: Students must complete a site guide for a select agency or a complete a site guide for a minimum of two service-learning projects offered or proposed at New England College. In teams, students select two schools/agencies to work closely with and identify needs that can be met by the College community.
Related Assignments: Students must complete a description of the school or agency; Identify available resources; develop a plan to meet identified needs; and identify the training and supervision needs.