Click here for more details on service-learning
possibilities at Ricks College.
Ricks College Service-Learning
Working from a broad definition, Ricks College
has several service-learning activities currently in place: Elementary Education
student-teacher assignments, Nursing clinicals, Home Economic homemaking evenings.
Brian Schmidt reports that the Discovery
Program sponsored by the Sociology Department permits students majoring in sociology,
social work, criminal justice, or psychology to earn up to nine credits while acting as
camp counselors for inner city youth in Chicago. The camp encourages youth (mainly
LDS) to stay away from gangs by giving them positive role models and a larger vision of
what is possible in their lives.
All of the current service-learning opportunities at Ricks College have been designed and
implemented by individual departments, teachers, and students.
Because the benefits of service-learning offer so much, it is time for Ricks College to
research ways to support the involved faculty and to find ways to educate and support
faculty interested in starting service-learning.
The Corporation for National Service defines service-learning
as a method under which students learn and develop through active participation in
thoughtfully organized service experiences that meet actual community needs, that are
integrated into the students' academic curriculum or provide structured time for
reflection, and that enhance what is taught in school by extending student learning beyond
the classroom and into the community.
The National Society for Experiential Education defines service-learning as any carefully
monitored service experience in which a student has intentional learning goals and
reflects actively on what he or she is learning throughout the experience.
Service-learning programs emphasize the accomplishment of tasks which address community
issues and include features which foster participants' learning about larger social issues
and an understanding of the reciprocal learning and service which can occur between
students and community members.
Why is Service-Learning Important?
A national study of Learn and Serve America
programs suggests that effective service-learning
programs improve academic grades, increase
attendance in school, and develop personal and
social responsibility. Whether the goal is academic
improvement, personal development, or both,
students learn critical thinking, communication,
teamwork, civic responsibility, mathematical
reasoning, problem solving, public speaking,
vocational skills, computer skills, scientific method, research skills, and analysis.
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Allison Bergstrom, as a requirement for her English 111 course, helps a young
Lincoln School 4th grade student with her writing skills.