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Course Design


Things to Think About....

Service-Learning Course Design Checklist 

By now, you have probably already considered your desired goals in adding a service component to your course. It is possible however, that there is an angle you did not consider. Below are a series of questions designed to assist you in thoroughly planning a service-learning course.

  1. hearthand.jpgHave you established clear, demonstrable objectives for your service-learning activities?
  2. Have you considered the needs and readiness of community-based organizations, the university, and  your students in planning your service-learning program?
  3. Do you have clear performance expectations and guidelines for your students, for the community-based organizations?
  4. Have you established clear roles, responsibilities, provisions for student orientation and training, monitoring and supervision of student progress in your service-learning plans?             
  5. Have you planned critical reflection opportunities for students to reflect on their service, the needs andconditions of the community, and the themes of the course?                        
  6.  Can you assess student performance in relation to stated objectives in order to fairly evaluate the learning outcomes   from their service experience?             

(Taken from Falbo, Mark C. Serving to Learn: A Faculty Guide to Service-Learning. The Center for Community Service, John Carroll University. p. 25.)

Goals of Service-Learning


  • Manifest the Dominican ideals of study, reflection, service, and community
  • Foster students' understanding of the dynamic relationship between theory and practice by providing the opportunity to apply what they learn.
  • Meet community needs through service that is meaningful and necessary.
  • Create the opportunity for students to explore/build their own core values.
  • Help students consider the ethical implications of the application of knowledge in professional and civic life.
  • Increase the civic and citizenship skills of students, faculty/staff.
  • Expose students to societal inadequacies and injustices and empower students to work for remedies.
  • Increase multicultural literacy for students, faculty/staff via the opportunity to learn from members of diverse communities.
  • Better prepare students for their careers / continuing education.
  • Re-affirmation of students' careers choices.
  • Increase leadership opportunities and development.
  • Excite and motivate students.
  • Give student greater responsibility for their learning.
  • Impact and raise awareness regarding local/global issues/ needs.
  • Develop an environment of collegial participation among students, faculty, staff and  the community and a culture of engaged scholarship on our campus.


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