Service-learning: History, Theory, and Issues

Front Cover
Bruce W. Speck, Sherry Lee Hoppe
Greenwood Publishing Group, 2004 - Education - 209 pages

Although service-learning programs can have diverse theoretical roots, faculty who engage their students in service-learning may not be be cognizant of alternatives to the one they adopt. This book presents not only a historical perspective, but it also debates the theories and issues surrounding the conflicts inherent in those theories. One theory, based on a philanthropic model, engages students in a commitment to serve others from a sense of gratitude for their own good fortunes or from a desire to give back to communities from which they have benefited. Typically, service-learning programs based on the philanthropic or communitarian models deal with the overt needs of community members. In contrast, the civic model requires deeper analysis of the various political and social issues that may be the cause of social conditions that require the help of the more fortunate. Opponents of the civic theory fear that proponents see the classroom as a forum for advancing particular political agendas, conceivably indoctrinating students to a particular view of social injustices.

This book presents the theories and critiques their merits and liabilities, providing insight into the widely divergent curricular applications. It also examines the reasons professors should consider service-learning components in their classes and provides resources for further investigation of both theory and practice.


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Theoretical Roots of ServiceLearning Progressive Education and the Development of Citizenship
The Historical Origins of ServiceLearning in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries The Transplanted and Indigenous Traditions
Theoretical Models
A Justification of the Philanthropic Model
A Critique of the Philanthropic Model
A Justification of the Civic Engagement Model
A Critique of the Civic Engagement Model
A Justification of the Communitarian Model
A Synthesis of the Theoretical Stances
Related Issues
The Ethics of Classroom Advocacy
ServiceLearning and Professional Ethics in a Catholic University
Selected Sources on ServiceLearning
About the Editors and the Contributors

A Critique of the Communitarian Model

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Page xi - A moral law, like a law in physics, is not something to swear by and stick to at all hazards ; it is a formula of the way to respond when specified conditions present themselves. Its soundness and pertinence are tested by what happens when it is acted upon.
Page 1 - A society which makes provision for participation in its good of all its members on equal terms and which secures flexible readjustment of its institutions through interaction of the different forms of associated life is in so far democratic. Such a society must have a type of education which gives individuals a personal interest in social relationships and control, and the habits of mind which secure social changes without introducing disorder.
Page xii - The belief that all genuine education comes about through experience does not mean that all experiences are genuinely or equally educative. Experience and education cannot be directly equated to each other. For some experiences are mis-educative.
Page 203 - MA from the University of London, and a Ph.D. from the University of Delaware.

About the author (2004)

BRUCE W. SPECK is the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Professor of English at Austin Peay State University.

SHERRY L. HOPPE is the President of Austin Peay State University.

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