In the last twenty years, Service-Learning has become a pedagogical strategy of significant importance in higher education. For the most part, service-learning is an educational experience in which students participate in a credit bearing course paired with an organized community service (Bringle & Hatcher, 2009).
In the core of the learning process are guided and structured reflections that support learning. For instance, guided reflections:
Enhance comprehension of the course content
Integrate academic and service concepts
Develop civic/social justice responsibility.
Reflection as a critical component for quality
Service-learning is integrated through structured reflections to meet academic and civic learning outcomes for students.
Reflection is the hyphen:
What students are saying about service-learning:
It was a fun and learning experience for us and for the children as well. They learned about bullying and we learned how to bring things together for the children. I feel I contributed to my community.”
Delia was a student in the service-learning class: “Literacy and Language Acquisition.”
Different from other experiential learning activities
“Students enrolled in service-learning classes do not receive academic credit for engaging in community service; rather, they receive academic credit for the learning that occurs as a result of the service experience” (Steinberg, Bringle, & Williams, 2010, p. 2).
What is not service-learning:
• Skills base development (internships)
Service-learning promotes civic responsibilities, students would become better citizens. How am I part of the community?
How are my actions related to the common good, greater good and social justice?