Developing a Syllabus
Syllabus development is one of the most critical and difficult aspects of successfully implementing an academic service-learning course. Below is a suggested list of questions that should be considered when developing a service-learning syllabus.
Questions to consider when developing an academic service-learning syllabus:
- Have I sufficiently clarified mutual objectives with community partners
- Have I connected service components with the course objectives?
- Clearly stated expectations for students
- How should I encourage students to respectfully engage with community partners, appreciating the learning opportunity that exists in the relationship?
- How can I incorporate writing into students' grades to ensure adequate time commitment?
- Clearly state expectations of students
- Include service as an expressed goal
- Clearly define how the service experience will be measured and what will be measured
- Describe the nature of the service placement and/or project
- Specify how students will be expected to demonstrate what they have learned in the placement/project (journal, papers, and presentations).
- Present course assignments that link the service placement and the course content
- Include a description of the reflective process
- "Constructing a Service-Learning Syllabus"
- Campus Compact (Service-learning syllabi arranged by discipline)
- Community-Campus Partnerships for Health (CCPH maintains a growing collection of service-learning syllabi and course materials).
- Service-Learning Syllabi Examples from West Virginia University
In addition to these resources, the Center for Civic Engagement maintains numerous examples of Binghamton University academic service-learning syllabi.