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ERIC Number: ED513943
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 44
Abstractor: ERIC
Creating a Climate for Service Learning Success
Jeandron, Carol; Robinson, Gail
American Association of Community Colleges (NJ1)
The American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) defines service learning as the combination of classroom instruction with community service, focusing on critical, reflective thinking as well as personal and civic responsibility. Service learning programs involve students in activities that address local, community-identified needs while developing their academic skills and commitment to their community (Gottlieb and Robinson 2006). In 2000, AACC published the project brief, "Creating Sustainable Service Learning Programs: Lessons Learned from the Horizons Project, 1997-2000". The publication suggested benchmarks and steps that colleges could take toward the institutionalization of service learning programs. Ten years later--and 15 years after Learn and Serve America began funding community colleges around the country--it is time to ask if colleges are meeting the same challenges in similar ways. Are students learning better or differently? Have faculty development efforts improved? Are colleges introducing both full-time and adjunct faculty to the service learning pedagogy? Have the types of community partnerships changed? This publication looks at 13 colleges that were selected in a national competition for AACC's program, Community Colleges Broadening Horizons through Service Learning. The colleges received funding of $5,000 to $16,000 per year from 2006 through 2009 and participated in consortium-wide training and leadership development efforts. The stories in this report are those of the 13 Horizons colleges, but they represent the 60 to 70 percent of community colleges across the country that have solidly embraced service learning and community engagement. The 2000 sustainability publication looked at activities and strategies used by previous Horizons colleges to ensure institutional and community support for service learning. The strategies fell into eight major topic areas: (1) Campus Climate; (2) Student Participation and Leadership; (3) Faculty Development and Involvement; (4) Curricular Integration; (5) Community Collaboration; (6) Administration Involvement and Support; (7) Program Development and Management; and (8) Sustainability and Institutionalization. This new report describes similar strategies that the 2006-2009 Horizons colleges used or supported, and then offers lessons learned to help advance the service learning and community engagement field. Most of the strategies are similar to those used a decade ago--proven strategies that work--with the addition of new media and technologies that have been developed in recent years. In the end, sustaining and institutionalizing service learning comes down to building and maintaining reciprocal relationships. (Contains 16 online resources.)
American Association of Community Colleges. One Dupont Circle NW Suite 410, Washington, DC 20015. Tel: 202-728-0200; Fax: 202-833-2467; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Two Year Colleges
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: American Association of Community Colleges