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ERIC Number: EJ1086104
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 19
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 36
ISSN: ISSN-1534-6102
Picturing Service-Learning: Defining the Field, Setting Expectations, Shaping Learning
Donahue, David M.; Fenner, Derek; Mitchell, Tania D.
Journal of Higher Education Outreach and Engagement, v19 n4 p19-37 2015
This study used content analysis and audiencing to understand how service-learning is presented visually by institutions of higher education and interpreted by college students. Data included 834 photographs from the service-learning web pages of 63 four-year institutions in California. The majority showed a narrow range of direct service including engaging with young people in out-of-classroom activities, tending gardens, tutoring, and working at a building site. Looking at a selection of these photos, a sample of 14 college students questioned definitions and power dynamics of service and noted a pattern of those serving being White and those served being people of color. Images were perceived differently by viewers depending on their backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives. If service-learning is to draw on the talents of students from diverse backgrounds and develop the knowledge, skills, and commitment to engage with society's complex problems, then the visual representation of service should reflect those aims.
Office of the Vice President for Public Service and Outreach, University of Georgia and the Institute of Higher Education. Treanor House, 1234 South Lumpkin Street, Athens, GA 30602. Tel: 706-542-6167; Fax: 706-542-6124; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California