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ERIC Number: EJ888071
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 64
ISSN: ISSN-1076-0180
Service-Learning Is... How Faculty Explain Their Practice
O'Meara, KerryAnn; Niehaus, Elizabeth
Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning, v16 n1 p17-32 Fall 2009
Many researchers have explored faculty engagement in service-learning. However, scholarship rarely considers ways in which the discourses used by faculty to describe service-learning--the stories they tell about what it is they are doing and why--construct images of subject positions, problems, and solutions that inform our beliefs about service-learning and our practice. The purpose of this study was to understand the dominant discourses used by faculty to explain service-learning. The nomination files of 109 exemplary faculty nominated for the Thomas Ehrlich Award were analyzed. Findings indicate that faculty use four dominant discourses regarding the purposes and significance of service-learning: (a) a model of teaching and learning; (b) an expression of personal identity; (c) an expression of institutional context and mission; or (d) or embedded in a specific community partnership. These findings affirm those of previous studies regarding faculty attraction to and motivation for involvement in service-learning, but also point to continuing challenges in institutionalizing service-learning in higher education. (Contains 6 tables.)
Edward Ginsberg Center for Community Service and Learning, University of Michigan. 1024 Hill Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-3310. Tel: 734-647-7402; Fax: 734-647-7464; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A