Student Affairs

Service-Learning

Service-learning is a teaching and learning strategy (not an outcome) that integrates classroom curriculum with organized service projects; it includes both a classroom and an off-campus experience (Eyler & Giles, 1999; Hatcher, Bringle, & Mathiah, 2004; Hurd, 2006; Mariani,2004). "It is aligning the course content by meeting a need of the community through student practice" (Campus Compact, 2000, p.15). This 'learning-by-doing' process provides a context for testing, trying out discipline-based theories, observations, concepts, practica and pedagogies. It allows the student an opportunity to utilize critical thinking, problem solving, creativity, communication and performance techniques (Hurd, 2006; Steiner & Sands, 2000). In order for service-learning to accomplish its varied goals – to strengthen classroom learning, to contribute to the community, and to be beneficial to students' personal and civic development – it is important that the faculty and students are actively engaged in planning and implementing service activities. While most of these factors are present in the service-learning experience, true service-learning also incorporates a reflection assignment/instrument to enhance the learning experience (American Association for Higher Education,1999).

Service-learning aims to further faculty research and teaching, enhance students' education, and build  community partnerships that create a win-win for all parties involved.  The learning environment at Jackson State University is enriched through experiential learning, as stated in the university's core values.  Thus, this office strives to help create a "classroom without walls" that is beneficial to faculty members, students, community partners, and the university in the following ways:

For Faculty Members, the Service-Learning office strives to

  • Assist in the development of innovative approaches to instruction
  • Provide support for service-learning courses (student orientation, site monitoring, reflection activities, and reporting hours to the student transcript)
  • Sponsor programs, speakers, and symposia on service-learning
  • Support faculty members' efforts to disseminate information through conference presentations or publications
  • Provide opportunities for collaborative community research and project development

​**Click here for forms and information: Service-Learning for Faculty

For College Students, Service-Learning allows them to

  • Apply concepts from the classroom to their service at participating community agencies (profit and/or nonprofit)
  • Learn to work within a diverse community
  • Gain knowledge and expertise from the community
  • Evaluate, question, and reformulate their civic values
  • Prepare for participation in internships and research
  • Explore career options
  • Provide worthwhile assistance to a community agency

​**Click here for forms and information: Service-Learning for Students

For Community Partners, Service-Learning

  • Gives access to the services of university students
  • Increases volunteer diversity in gender, age and race 
  • Allows agencies to identify needs and meet those needs through the development of a service project 
  • Builds ongoing relationships between the university and the community partner
     

For the University, Service-Learning

  • Furthers the goals of the strategic plan and the mission of the university 
  • Drives the university as an active, engaged partner in the community
  • Facilitates university teaching, researchand program development
  • Increases student retention and engagement.