ERIC Number: ED405913
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Feb
Reference Count: N/A
Civic Literacy, Service Learning, and Community Renewal. ERIC Digest.
At a time of widespread public cynicism about social institutions, America's community colleges are striving to reconnect with the communities they serve and function as catalysts for community renewal. In a recent national survey, about a third of the colleges questioned had formalized service learning in their course work, and nearly half provided an office or campus center to coordinate service opportunities and communicate them to students. In establishing service learning and civic literacy components, faculty support is crucial, while methods that faculty can use to demonstrate the ideas behind good community citizenship include balancing course materials to reflect the values of both individual rights and community responsibility and being prepared to confront ethical issues. Trustees and administrators, for their part, can model good citizenship by working for partnerships between education, business, and the community, as well as by sharing and publicizing "best practices" in community services. These are only first steps, however, and it is important that students move from theory in the classroom to reality via service learning in their communities and that their civic literacy include an understanding of the workplace within the broader social context. Finally, community-based programming models help community colleges address the most critical issues facing their communities and can place the colleges at the heart of efforts for community renewal. (HAA)
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse for Community Colleges, Los Angeles, CA.