Academic Service Learning

Service Learning:  Experiences and Reflections

Barbara Smith Mishara, AIA, LEED AP, Department of Architectural Technology

New York City College of Technology, City University of New York

Selected bibliography The amount of information on service learning is immense. Part of my rationale in discussing the history of the movement was to help you navigate through to the type of service learning project which interests you. It helps if you are clear what you wish to accomplish – community service, civic engagement, and specific learning outcomes.

Service learning is the umbrella term. Service learning generally has a strong component of civic engagement or doing good.  Academic service learning is more closely tied to the teaching of a particular discipline and its learning objectives, although community involvement remains important.

This is not a comprehensive list; the literature is too copious. Rather it is a compilation of sources which I found helpful when I started to plan my academic serving learning project.


Campus Compact.

Campus Compact is a national coalition of more than 1,100 college and university presidents, dedicated to promoting community service, civic engagement, and service-learning in higher education. Under faculty resources, its web site provides many course syllabi  Each syllabus gives thought provoking ideas for projects.

National Service-Learning Clearinghouse.

The organization provides resources for service learning projects which can be accessed under the resources type tab. Of particular interest are the following:

Faculty Toolkit for Service-Learning in Higher Education, a downloadable monograph of 167 pages, provides information on planning, designing and implementing service learning projects into curriculum, as well as assessment.

Service-Learning Ideas and Curricular Examples (SLICE), a database of syllabi and project ideas.

Bibliographies on topics of interest

Service-Learning At-A-Glance: Selected Resources

Syllabi and Curricula for Higher Education Service-Learning: Selected Resources

Reflection in Service-Learning: Selected Resources

Impacts and Outcomes of Service-Learning in Higher Education: Selected Resources

Models of Service-Learning Partnerships

Theory of Service-Learning: Selected Resources


This is a monograph series which was published by the American Association of Higher Education between 1997 and 2005. The series is now available through Stylus Publishing ( search for “service learning”)

The series covers diverse disciplines as environmental studies, philosophy, mathematics, history, nursing, sociology, medical education, teacher education, political science, hospitality (lodging, foodservice, and tourism), accounting, biology, women’s studies, engineering, communication studies, management, psychology, peace studies, sustainability, writing, social justice, planning and architecture.

Hardin, Mary C. (ed), From the Studio to the Streets: Service Learning in Planning and Architecture, Heardon, VA., Stylus Publishing 2006.

Tsang,  Edmund,  Projects That Matter: Concepts and Models for Service Learning in Engineering,

Heardon, VA., Stylus Publishing 2000.

Another source is

Howard, Jeffrey and Wilbert McKeachie (ed.). Praxis I: A Faculty Casebook on Community Service Learning.Ann Arbor,Mich,  University ofMichigan, 1993.

This book contains chapters on sociology, English, biology, psychology, public health, political science, women’s studies, social work, and architecture.


I found this material helpful.

Bonnette, Roy. “Out of the Classroom and into the Community: Service Learning Reinforces Classroom Instruction.” Technology Teacher; Feb 2006, Vol. 65 Issue 5, p 6-11.

Hatcher, J. A., and R. G. Bringle. “Reflection: Bridging the Gap between Service and Learning.” College Teaching 1997 Vol. 45 Issue 4, p153-8.

Jacoby, Barbara (ed.)  Service-Learning in Higher Education: Concepts and PracticesSan Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1996.

Stanton, T. K., D. E. Giles, and N. I. Cruz. Service Learning: A Movement’s Pioneers Reflect on its Origins, Practice, and Future.San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 1999.

Tai-Seale, Thomas. “Liberating Service Learning and Applying the New Practice.”

College Teaching; Winter 2001, Vol. 49 Issue 1, p14-19.

Weigert, Kathleen Maas. “Academic Service Learning: Its Meaning and Relevance.”

New Directions for Teaching & Learning; Spring 98, Issue 73, p3-11.

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