Types of Service Learning

Times spent in actual service learning activities can range from a three hour field experience up to a commitment of forty hours at a local organization. Service learning can run for a period of up to sixteen weeks.

The various types of service learning experiences are explained briefly below

  • Service-Learning Stand Alone Courses 

These courses are designed to maximize student involvement in service learning.  You will spend the majority of your course involved in service learning.  Depending upon whether your course is a 1 hour or a 3 hour class, your experience may involve 20 to 40 hours of community service.  Instructors usually require a service learning plan, daily or weekly journal writing, and/or a reflective paper.

  • Service-Learning Course Components

This is one of the more popular methods instructors utilize in offering students a service learning experience.  Each instructor offers this in a creative manner, e.g., in lieu of one test grade, or 10 percent extra credit towards your earned grade; or as an independent study project.  Usually this involves 5% to 40% or your total grade and 15 to 30 hours of volunteer work.

  • Service-Learning Field Studies

Instructors offer students opportunities to do brief field studies in a particular course.  The service learning opportunity is usually accomplished in one or two brief time intervals, for example, serving for an afternoon at the Oxley Nature Center while observing a botanist, or shadowing an early childhood development specialist at a preschool site while assisting with classroom activities.  The time commitment is usually 3-6 hours.