Designating a Service-Learning Course
Designating a Service-Learning Course – What’s in it for you
The Office of Service-Learning and Civic Engagement has been tracking service-learning courses since 2006. The designation process helps:
- The Registrar’s Office code undergraduate/graduate courses as having a service-learning component on student transcripts as well as on Murphy.
- The university quantify community engagement in the Carnegie Foundation’s “engaged campus” category as well as apply for grants.
- OSLCE plan and budget properly, ensuring fairness across the various colleges, departments, and units it serves.
Faculty also benefit from the designation process:
- Current annual review, tenure, and promotion policies in the College of Arts and Sciences recognize the offering of quality service-learning courses as meritorious. Only designated courses count for this rating.
- Doing service-learning entails risk. OSLCE provides liability assistance for faculty engaging the community.
- OSLCE publicizes designated courses on its website. Students who are looking for service opportunities will be able to find only courses that have gone through the designation process when they visit the service-learning page.
- Faculty with designated courses are eligible to receive the annual service-learning faculty award.
The Designation Process
Complete the SL Designation Form and email a copy of your syllabus and description of the service-learning component to ServiceLearn@stthomas.edu. A subcommittee of the Service-Learning Advisory Board reviews all applications.
Courses must meet ALL the criteria below to be given a service-learning designation. If you have any questions or would like to consult with someone in SL, contact ServiceLearn@stthomas.edu.
- The service-learning component is integrated into the course content and learning objectives.
- There are opportunities for structured reflection (written, verbal, or other) about the service-learning experiences.
- The service-learning activities are meaningful, relevant, and intentionally linked to academic content.
- The service-learning component benefits the common good and raises issues of social responsibility.
- Both the community partner and the University benefit from the relationship. Expectations for each party are set.
- The service-learning experience is required for all students.
Service Learning Tiers
“Tier 1” Component – Introductory Course: Service-Learning courses considered as “Tier 1” are courses with a service-learning component. Rather than being integrated throughout the entire course, the service and reflection satisfies the requirements for a single unit. Courses with fewer hours of engagement (between 5 and 15 hours) will typically qualify as “Tier 1”. This component does not appear of the class transcript.
“Tier 2” Service-Learning Courses: “Tier “2 Service-Learning courses provide for an integrated service-learning experience throughout the entire course. Typically, “Tier 2” courses will require 20 to 40 (or more) hours of service. “Tier 2” courses will appear on student transcripts.
Courses with a Service-Learning Component (PDF Download)
Here are some of the academic service-learning opportunities that will be offered during J-Term and Spring Term 2013. Faculty members teaching these courses have included a brief description of the service-learning projects in their courses. This list will be updated as new courses are designated. Click the term you wish to view.