Essay PreviewMore ↓
History of Service-Learning
The history and origins of the service-learning practice in the United States is older than its own name (Clearinghouse, Titlebaum, Daprano, Baer, & Brahler, 2004). However, the phrase service-learning was first used in 1966 to describe a joint project between Tennessee college students and professors working on area developmental organizational projects (p. 4). Subsequently, in 1967 Robert Sigmon and William Ramsey, while working at the Southern Regional Education Board, coined the term for the first time (Giles & Eyler, 1994; Sigmon, 1979; Stanton, Giles, & Cruz, 1999). Later in the 1970s, Sigmon published in the Synergist his manifesto entitled, Service-Learning: Three Principles (1979), in which the author framed the foundations of service-learning as a pedagogical method. According to Sigmon, every service-learning practitioner should adhere to the following three principles:
1) Those being served control the service(s) provided. 2) Those being served become better able to serve and be served by their own actions. 3) Those who serve also are learners and have significant control over what is expected to be learned (p. 10).
The point at issue here is the conceptualization of service-learning as a dialectical process in which all participants equally evolve as active learners and agents of change.
During past decades, particularly the 1980s, much of the service-learning debate revolved around its definition (Crews, 2002). It seems like previous scholars could not establish a consensual agreement on what to call “service-learning” and what should be included (Plann, 2002). Even though the broad scope of service-learning allows other programs to exist under the same description (Furco, 1996), sometimes such a rubric also tolerates the emerging of “moniker” programs (Butin, 2010). Kendall’s (1990) review of the service-learning literature illustrates the aforementioned case. The author provides 147 different definitions depending on whether service-learning is seen as an educational or philosophical method. Although such conceptualizations will change to meet the goals and expectations of civic, social, educational, and governmental institutions (Maurrasse, 2004; Shumer & Shumer, 2005), some of them brought a much-needed conceptual clarity to the field. For instance, the National and Community Service Act of (1990) defined service-learning as:
A method (A) under which students or participants learn and develop through active participation in thoughtfully organized service that (i) is conducted in and meets the needs of a community; (ii) is coordinated with an elementary school, secondary school, institution of higher education, or community service program,
How to Cite this Page
"History and Origins of the Service Learning Practice." 123HelpMe.com. 04 Apr 2020
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- There are many factors that influence the ability for advance practice nurses to provide culturally competent care. The nursing profession is challenged by the growing number of ethnically diverse group in our country that require health care. Minority groups now account for 37% of the population in the United States, and it is predicted that by 2050, that will grow to 50% (Lee, Fitzpatrick, & Baik, 2013). During the 2011 Census, it was documented that 381 individual languages and dialects are spoken in the United States.... [tags: Nursing, Nursing theory, Health care]
1143 words (3.3 pages)
- My first introduction to psychology was as a high school student fascinated by the origins of human behavior. In a high school survey class, I learned that psychology is a much broader field that covers the entire range of human perception, motivation, and behavior. I have since been interested by the intricacies of human behavior. Almost everything that we do, large and small, can be explained in terms of psychological principles, and understanding these principles has given me a more comprehensive perspective on human behavior as a whole.... [tags: Psychology, Psychiatry, Medicine, Health care]
1643 words (4.7 pages)
- The first part of this paper will explore the mystery-religions, the reasons behind their popularity, and the Hellenistic world in which they grew that began with Alexander the Great. Next, their characteristics and connections first with Judaism and later with Christianity will be more deeply discussed. In the second part it will be shown that the mystery-religions helped to clear the pathway for the Christianization of the Greco-Roman world by men such as Paul the Apostle. Finally, the Emperor Constantine’s role in this story will be mentioned, during whose reign the mystery-religions declined and Christianity became the major religion of Europe and the near east.... [tags: Exploratory Essays Research Papers]
4076 words (11.6 pages)
- The functional area of service-learning is currently emerging as an acknowledged department at an institution of higher education. The theoretical roots of service learning go back to John Dewey, and the early twentieth century. However, current research on service-learning pedagogy dates back only to the early 1990’s. Best practices for the field are still being created as more and more new offices are springing up on campuses throughout the United States and institutions internationally. The reason this functional area is becoming ever popular is due to the positive impact it has on students and most all educational outcomes.... [tags: academic service-learning, co-curricular]
1648 words (4.7 pages)
- The learning environment and practice placement I currently work in is a substance misuse service. The clinical learning environment is where students work directly with patients whilst enabling them to and are able to conductively learn. Burns and Patterson (2005) state it is the responsibility of higher education institutes in partnership with the NHS to prepare nurses to cope with the complex nature of clinical practice. In my opinion I believe mentors play a significant role in relation to the clinical learning environment, as mentors are who support the student during their placement.... [tags: Education, Learning styles, Environment]
2123 words (6.1 pages)
- Research is the systematic process of obtaining the authentic answers to significant and relevant questions by adopting the scientific method of gathering understanding information. In the case of Nursing Research, we identify evolution in modern knowledge, progress in education and professional growth, and usage of resources efficiently. This research mainly intended to develop the awareness to extend possible good health over life span on an individual. Proposed to improve effective response of the persons with disabilities towards actual potential health problems.... [tags: service learning, evidence-based practice]
696 words (2 pages)
- 1) After completing this service-learning assignment, how has your understanding of service learning changed. Please elaborate upon your definition of service learning and why it was included in this course. a) My understanding of service learning has not changed too much after this assignment. The reason it did not change too much is because I have participated in service learning before. However, I understand now that service learning is not the same as community service. Service learning is community service where the individual who does the service also learns about himself or herself and also grows academically, or gains a new knowledge base.... [tags: Learning, Education, Knowledge, Want]
1611 words (4.6 pages)
- I volunteered at the Activity Center for my Service Learning project. My duties were to watch the kids who participated in the after school program, play with them and help them with their home homework. I really enjoyed interacting with the African-American people and culture. I learned many things from the African-American population I worked with. I learned how the Activity Center staff teaches the after school kids good manners and behavior. I mentioned in one of my service learning journals that the staff was very strict and treated the kids like prisoners, but I came to the realization that maybe that is how they teach the kids discipline.... [tags: Service Learning Project]
1545 words (4.4 pages)
- Working to improve the lives of others is often noted as one of the most remarkable ways to improve one’s own life. It is important to understand that service learning is a not a new method of education, although it has grown and developed quite a bit over the years. The benefits of service learning are countless. It is an undeniably constructive effort for people of all ages to participate in. Exposing these types of activities on youth is particularly helpful to those individuals in myriad ways.... [tags: lawrenceville, service learning, education]
1764 words (5 pages)
- When a woman approached Benjamin Franklin following the concluding session of the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in the fall of 1787 and asked what sort of government the delegates had come up with, Franklin famously replied: "A republic, madam, if you can keep it." The relevance of that notable statement transcended centuries and applied itself not only to national politics. The People’s participation in maintaining an agreeable government depends on a collective activism regarding both state and local civic affairs.... [tags: Service Learning Teaching Education]
1115 words (3.2 pages)
Such articulation is a model in the field because it institutionalized and made official the practice of service-learning in the United States by authorizing the creation of grants, federal government corporations, and some funding programs and resources such as the Corporation for National & Community Service, AmeriCorps, and the National Service-Learning Clearinghouse. Furthermore, the Act of 1990 validated the previous efforts of the presidents of Brown, Georgetown and Stanford universities, along with the president of the Education Commission of the States in the creation of Campus Compact (Clearinghouse, et al., 2004). More important, the Act of 1990 ratified The Principles of Good Practice in Combining Service and Learning (1989), a document that experienced service-learning participants at the 1989 Wingspread Conference drafted for the purpose of being implemented nationwide as the foundation for effective programs in schools and on campuses (p. 9). The ten principles are as follows:
1. An effective program engages people in responsible and challenging actions for the common good.
2. An effective program provides structured opportunities for people to reflect critically on their service-learning experience.
3. An effective program articulates clear service and learning goals for anyone.
4. An effective program allows those with needs to define those needs.
5. An effective program clarifies the responsibilities of each person and organization involved.
6. An effective program matches service providers and service needs through a process that recognizes challenging circumstances.
7. An effective program expects genuine, active, and sustained organizational commitment.
8. An effective program includes training, supervision, monitoring, support, recognition, and evaluation to meet service and learning goals.
9. An effective program insures that the time commitment for service-learning is flexible, appropriate, and in the best interest of all involved.
10. An effective program is committed to program participation by and with diverse population (Porter & Poulsen, 1989, p. preamble).
The previous events finally developed a foundation for mutual understanding of the nature of service-learning among practitioners and theorists. Additionally, Bringle & Hatcher (1995) proposed what has been considered by some experts one of the most accepted definitions in the field:
Service-learning [is] a course-based, credit-bearing, educational experience in which students (a) participate in an organize 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 civic responsibility (p. 112).
Ultimately, what is at stake here is that service-learning is an academic activity and, moreover, it is connected to a curriculum. This feature differentiates service-learning from other community-based programs such as community service and volunteering (Furco, 1996). Another distinction from this definition is the assessment of reflection as the critical component of service-learning because it is the link that connects philosophy and pedagogy, theory and practice, universities and communities, the cognitive and the ethical. As Eyler (2001) notes, “Reflection is the hyphen in service-learning; it is the process that helps students connect what they observe and experience in the community with their academic study” (p. 35).