What is Service-Learning?
Service-learning is a pedagogical strategy that combines meaningful service with academic study in order to 1) teach civic responsibility, 2) strengthen communities, and 3) exchange community- and university-derived resources and expertise. Working together, LUC instructors, students, and local partners seek to achieve well-defined objectives that meet real community needs, while also developing students' skills and achieving a deeper collective understanding of social issues in The Hague.
Service-learning is distinct from internship experiences or volunteer work in that it aims to equally benefit both the recipients and the providers of the service, all within a framework that promotes civic engagement and enriches the scholarship of the university.
In a service-learning course, students participate in a three-part process. First comes the presentation and analysis of theories or ideas in the classroom. Next is the opportunity to apply or test those theories in a concrete way within a service setting. And third is the chance for students to reflect on and refine what they have learned in light of their experiences. These steps repeat over the course of the semester and are guided by an instructor working in tandem with a community partner (Jeavons 1995, 135).
To find out more more about service-learning, visit Campus Compact, a U.S. coalition of more than 1,100 colleges and universities committed to fulfilling the public purpose of higher education.