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Title: Seeing the “big picture” : exploring the impact of the duration of community service volunteer work and learning on university students
Authors: Raykov, Milosh
Taylor, Alison
Keywords: Service learning
Student volunteers in social service
Students -- Attitudes
Issue Date: 2021-12
Publisher: University of Malta. Faculty of Education
Citation: Raykov, M., & Taylor, A. (2021). Seeing the “big picture” : exploring the impact of the duration of community service volunteer work and learning on university students. Malta Review of Educational Research, 15(2), 241-268.
Abstract: Community service learning (CSL) is growing in higher education across Canada and has been a part of university programs in the US for decades. It is described by the Association of American Colleges and Universities as a “high impact” educational practice, along with academic learning communities, undergraduate research, study abroad, internships, and capstone courses or experiences (Kuh, 2008). Some of the service learning program characteristics that reportedly contribute to its impact include the quality of CSL placements, the quantity and quality of opportunities for student reflection, the application of the placement to academic content, and the duration and intensity of service (Eyler et al., 2001). This paper focuses on the question, what difference does the duration of service learning through volunteering and classroom activities make for student outcomes, drawing on data from a mixed methods study of students engaged in service learning at a Canadian university. Our previous analysis suggests that CSL is perceived very positively by most students who participate and that it contributes to their development in a variety of ways. The study found that even when students did not opt to engage in a community placement within a community service-learning course, they were positively impacted by peer learning. However, little research has examined the relationship between the intensity of service learning and students’ attitudes. This study provides a contribution to this insufficiently explored domain.
Appears in Collections:MRER, Volume 15, Issue 2

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