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ERIC Number: ED431678
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Nov
Pages: 16
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Service Learning: Perceptions of Preservice Teachers.
McMahon, Rebecca
Efforts are currently being made across the country to strengthen the connection between students' service learning experiences and course content at the university level. A study used qualitative data for gaining insight into preservice teachers' experiences and perceptions related to service learning. Subjects were undergraduate students enrolled in two sections of an early childhood course. Each student volunteered to work a minimum of 10 hours for an organization that serves children. Students reflected on their experiences by keeping dialogue journals and participating in two reflection sessions. At the end of the semester, students contemplated involvement in community service by responding to a set of open-ended questions in the form of a narrative reaction paper. Reaction papers were individually analyzed by two researchers for the purpose of identifying patterns or similarities in three broad areas of interest: (1) overall attitude, (2) learning that occurred, and (3) impact on university life. Following a collaborative analysis of research notes, findings were synthesized. Data analysis revealed a favorable perspective toward service learning. Academic benefits cited ranged from clarifying an individual's choice of major to observing or applying information present in university courses. Additionally, participants communicated learning outcomes in regard to each individual, the community, and children/adolescents. Contains 3 references. (BT)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A