Volunteerism, community service, and experiential learning are fundamentally different from service-learning. An activity should be called service-learning only if it has both a curricular and a graded service component.
- A pedagogy integrating service, fieldwork, or community-based research that reinforces course content and brings meaningful service to the community.
- A means to help students develop critical thinking skills in applied situations and gain experience with real-world problem-solving.
- An opportunity for students to understand—and exercise–civic engagement.
- Volunteerism or community service not connected to a graded course.
- Experiential or applied class content that does not have a benefit for the community.
- Worthwhile class activities that benefit the community but are not integrated into the specific learning objectives of the course.
For detailed information about how to develop a service learning course, download the 2015 Faculty Guide to Service Learning.