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ERIC Number: EJ1146280
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1937-0814
Service Learning and Its Impact on Middle Level Preservice Teachers' Learning from Field Experiences
Harrison, Lisa M.
Middle Grades Research Journal, v8 n3 p23-38 2013
This qualitative self-study examines the incorporation of service learning in 2 sections of a middle childhood undergraduate methods course. As a beginning teacher educator, I used self-study to explore the following research questions: (a) How does engaging in a service-learning project during a field experience influence middle level preservice teachers' beliefs about teaching and working with young adolescents?; (b) How does engaging in a service-learning project during a field experience impact middle level preservice teachers' learning from field experiences? Data was collected from 55 preservice teachers who were placed in 4 different schools within Midwestern rural Appalachia. Three major findings emerged during data analysis. First, engaging in service learning allowed preservice teachers to feel they were adding value to their school in ways beyond that of their previous field experiences. Second, engaging in the service-learning project encouraged and required preservice teachers to interact with school personnel, the local community, and students with whom they previously had not interacted during their placements. These interactions raised perceptions of role responsibilities and increased preservice teachers' sense of professional identity. Finally, some preservice teachers' stereotypes about the Appalachian context were reinforced during the needs assessment process. However, the service learning projects created a space to start meaningful conversations to address these preservice teachers' cultural deficit perspectives and consider strengths-based ways of knowing their students and their families.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Middle Schools; Secondary Education; Junior High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A